By the close of the book of Genesis, God had chosen a small, insignificant people to lead. He wanted to raise up a people who would be living examples of his goodness to the heathen world. To bring about such a testimony, God took his people into places that were beyond their control. He isolated Israel in a wilderness where he alone would be their source of life, caring for their every need.
“Therefore whoever confesses me before men, him I will also confess before my Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies me before men, him I will also deny before my Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 10:32-33, NKJV).
The Greek word for confess in this passage means covenant, assent or agreement. Jesus is speaking of an agreement we have with him. Our part is to confess him, or represent him, in our daily lives. We are to live by his promises of protection and personal care for us, and we are to testify of his marvelous blessings by how we live.
Fruit in the Bible can mean a lot of things; it can mean fruit of the Spirit, which is love, joy, meekness, kindness; but it can also mean fruit of ministry. As we see in the New Testament, certain men from Cyprus and Cyrene went to Antioch, and the hand of the Lord was with them, and multitudes turned to the Lord (see Acts 11:19-26).
As Christ’s witnesses, we are called to a seemingly impossible task. We are asking the world to lay down the things that are most dear to them: their sins. In their eyes, the Christian walk — a life of purity and holiness — looks like a form of slavery. Our idea of heaven seems to them more like hell. When they hear us talk about the gospel, it is an offence to their lifestyle. Christ’s gospel calls them to repent of the sins they love, to repent of rejecting the God who died for them on a cross.