“You did not choose me; I chose you. And I gave you this work: to go and produce fruit, fruit that will last.” John 15:16. NCV.
Our today’s insight comes of the farewell disclosure of Jesus to his disciples before his death, burial, resurrection, and ascension. The chapters 13 to 16 of the Gospel of John records this final one to one conversation of Jesus to his disciple. Many things Jesus instructed them. Yet one of many is this, he said, “You did not choose me; I chose you.” Isn’t true? None of them chose Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ chose each one of them.
Beloved, God chose you is the foundational truth the Bible reveals. We do not know why he chose those twelve disciples. He chose them out of multitudes of people. Bible says in Ephesians 1 that God chose us in Jesus Christ even before he made the whole world, in the eternity past, when there was only the triune God. Ephesians 3:11 says God chose us in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Christ Jesus our Lord. 2nd Timothy 1:9 says, “He called us not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and according to the grace that was granted to us in Christ Jesus from all eternity.” You see God chose from all eternity past. And God called in time through the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Decision of choice was eternal. The calling came to us at different times according to the times we lived here on this planet earth. It is mind-boggling. However, the Bible consistently reveals this truth in its pages. 1st Corinthians 1:9 says, “God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” 1st Corinthians 2:26 says consider or think about our high calling from God, how he chose you even though you did not have any attractive charisma, name, fame, or anything that is good enough in you.
Now Jesus reminds this eternal choice of God. He says, “You did not choose me; I chose you.” Secondly, it is marvelous He chose you which itself is very hard to figure out, but again he reminds them he gave you a work to do. NIV and other translations say “I appointed you”. What is that he appointed us? It says right there-“to go and produce fruit, fruit that will last.” Jesus appointed you to do things “that will last”. There are three that would last according to the Bible. God, people, and the truth of the word of God. God is eternal. People are eternal and the word of God is eternal.
Beloved, the basic task or work that Jesus wants you to do is investing in people and in the word of God. Apostle Paul invested in people by preaching the gospel and teaching them the word of God. Not only he taught them, but also he took the pen and wrote down for future generations. He bore amazing fruit down through the centuries that would last forever. When you share the gospel of God and the love of God with other people you are investing in them. It is an eternal investment because people are eternal. When you invest your time and energy in studying and teaching the Bible, you bear lasting fruit by helping people to know the truth of the word of God. When you use the money God to help people to know God, you bear fruit that lasts forever.
One day when you are in heaven, many unknown people would come, and thank you. You may wonder what you did to them. However, God knows and they all know. You somehow invested in their life either pointing them to Jesus Christ or informing them the eternal word of God. It could be using your time, money, energy, influence, or by using the spiritual gifts God gave you. Figure out how you can produce fruit, fruit that will last. Sadly many fruits we produce would not last long enough. Invest prudently to bear fruit that will last forever.
“Father in heaven, Thank you because you chose me even before the foundation of the world in Jesus Christ according to your eternal purpose. I believe Jesus died, buried, and rose again for my sins. Please forgive me and grant me your eternal love and salvation. Lord, help me to produce fruit that will last by investing in people and in your eternal Word, the Bible. I surrender my life for your work that you sovereignly appointed me. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.”