“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.” (John 15:16)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Faith bears fruit. The fruit of which Jesus speaks is first the confession of His saving Word to the world and faith that prays with boldness and confidence. That fruit bearing cannot happen without life flowing from the vine. Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). So it was that Jesus chose Simon and Jude to be apostles. They would carry out their appointed task to bring the message of salvation in the Name of Jesus to many lands. Churchly tradition indicates that Simon and Jude travelled together as far as Persia (modern day Iran) proclaiming the Gospel all along the way. While in Persia they were both killed (martyred) for the sake of their confession of Christ. We don’t know anything more about these two men. Perhaps that is the way it ought to be.
We do know what is most important concerning these two. They were chosen by Jesus, filled with faith, and sent to bear the fruits of faith in this world. That is the best that can be said of anyone.
It is what we can say about you! While you do not share the unique apostolic calling of Simon and Jude, you do have a share in their Lord. It is Jesus who called you by His Word, most of you first in the watery Word of Holy Baptism. You were filled with faith and are continually strengthened in that faith as you receive His rich Word of forgiveness each day, and His Body and Blood on the Lord’s Day.
And you are sent to bear the fruits of faith in the places where God the Father sends you. Simon and Jude are pretty much anonymous saints. What a great thing to say of any Christian. We are nothing. Jesus is everything! In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
Almighty God, You chose Your servants Simon and Jude to be numbered among the glorious company of the apostles. As they were faithful and zealous in their mission, so may we with ardent devotion make known the love and mercy of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen. (Collect for St Simon and St. Jude)
Audio Reflections Speaker: Pastor Duane Bamsch