Like its physical counterpart, spiritual growth happens slowly. A newly baptized Christian will not produce the fruit of the spirit as easily as a mature one.
The Parable of the Growing Seed is unique to the book of Mark, the most basic of the gospels, perhaps due to it being so simple and its point self-evident.
If we are intent on bearing fruit, we can do some things to make sure that we are not inhibiting the process. We find them in one of the fig tree parables.
The Kingdom parables allude to the process of spiritual maturity, depicting a planted and cultivated seed becoming a sprout, eventually bearing fruit.
Richard Ritenbaugh, reiterating that in physical and spiritual creation, God does not wave a wand, but does a great deal of work. Likewise, in our repentance, there is a great deal of reciprocal effort between God and us. In the stories of Star Wars, the X-Men, or Harry Potter, the protagonist does not grow in character, but …
Bill Onisick, asserting that getting grape vines to bear fruit is difficult, suggests that the production of succulent grapes is at least a two-year project, in which pruning dead wood and lateral vines that produce much foliage, but little fruit, and exposing buds to sufficient sun (by thinning the canopy) are essential. …
Fruit maturation takes time. Waiting for the fruit is just part of the story; while we wait, we must also work, including thinning and pruning.
Fruit is a product of growth requiring knowledge, work, patience, truth (light) and water (God's Spirit). Only by remaining on the vine will we bear fruit.
The first parable of Matthew 13 lays the groundwork (pun intended) for the remainder of the chapter. Martin Collins explains the various soils upon which the seed of the gospel falls, and the reasons why growth—or its lack—results.
Three factors are necessary for successful grafting: (1) compatibility, (2) alignment and pressure, and (3) proper care of the joint site.
We often speak confidently of friends and relatives who will rise in the second or general resurrection to have their opportunity for salvation—but what a shame it would be if we were not there to greet them! Mike Ford, reminiscing about being there for his grandfather, urges us all to make our election sure!
God spreads His Word liberally among the world's people. Besides God's direct involvement in converting people, the difference between one growing in it and another "dying on the vine" is the soil in which the Word is planted, explained in Jesus' Parable of the Sower.
The constant tests to which God submits His people enable them to build character by responding in faith. God perfected Abraham's faith through difficult trials.
Numerous scriptures show the bad effects of impatience committed by ancient Israel, while the patriarchs, Jesus Christ, and the Father set examples of true patience.
Biblically, a harvest represents the gathering and resurrection of the saints, but also includes other aspects of our preparation for God's Kingdom.
We must develop an active, God-given restraint and constancy in endurance while facing trials and waiting for Christ's return, trusting that God will provide.
Drawing an analogy between kudzu and the thorns in the Parable of the Sower, Mike Ford shows how we have to "weed out" detrimental habits that choke our lives. If we want to produce quality fruit, we must weed the garden!