Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; and so shall ye be my disciples.John 15:8 ASV
“Whosoever will” is invited.
The great commission was to the “whole creation.” In the very shadow of the cross, Jesus’ passionate desire was “much fruit”; and Jesus’ stressing this here emphasizes the truth that the evangelization of the whole world is the first, last, and great duty of the church.
Fruit … may not be understood here as meaning exclusively the manifestation of the graces and virtues of holy living, although the fruit of the Spirit is definitely said to be such things (Galatians 5:22).
A larger and more comprehensive meaning is included here, namely, that of producing more Christians. Conversions are the fruit Christ had in view here; and no Christian, and no church, can be considered truly “in Christ” unless passionately engaged in soul-winning.
At this point, the farewell discourse of Jesus turned to his love and the necessity of his followers abiding in his love, thus concluding the analogy of the vine.
Whether apostles or just Christians, all who hope for redemption must be “in Christ,” abide in him, and be found in him at last.
Failure to abide in the Lord, that is, failure to abide in his teachings: or failure to remain in his spiritual body, shall ever result in forfeiture of all spiritual blessings.
The great purpose of unity with Christ is the salvation of the world, to the extent it may be possible.
Men shall recognize Christ’s disciples by their constant efforts to enlist others in the service of Christ. “And so shall ye be my disciples.”
Also, every cluster of grapes has a few “no good” grapes on it; and there are no congregations which do not manifest the same characteristic.
It is not affirmed here that such thoughts were in the mind of the Lord when he gave the analogy; but none can deny the truth of this.