“The true fruit of an apple tree is not an apple, but more apple trees.”
If you think about it, from the perspective of an apple tree, this statement is actually a true statement. The goal of an apple tree is not to grow apple, but rather to grow more apple trees. An apple tree isn’t satisfied being full of apple, but not able to grow more trees out of the apples. An apple tree gains its fulfillment in the growing of more apple tress, not more apples.
Spiritually, it is the same. It is not enough to just bear fruits. The fruits has to grow more trees. That means, our goal isn’t to grow more fruits, but to grow more disciples, through our fruits. This is exactly what Jesus has called us to do as his last words. After all the sermons and teachings, at the end he points to discipleship. Because, that is what the fruits are for.
In the Bible, the fruits of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. Through these, the seed of Christ can be planted and grow. The seed has to be Christ, so that the new tree will be ‘of Christ’. Thus, it is only through Christ can you produce fruits that contain the seed of Christ.
Spiritual maturity shouldn’t be an end in itself. Spiritual maturity has to lead to ministry.
Spiritual fruits shouldn’t be an end in itself. Spiritual fruits have to lead to discpleship.