Col 1.9-11 For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy.
Among the things that Paul prayed for the Colossian church was that that they would be fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. This is an echo of Jesus’ thought in John 15:7-8: “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire and it shall be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.”
Good words are empty apart from good works. God’s will for each and every one of you who are in Christ is that you would be fruitful in every good work and increase in the knowledge of God. And the more we increase in the knowledge of God, the more that we will be fruitful we are in good works. Since good works are always the overflow of a healthy walk with Jesus Christ, the emphasis of the Christian life is always on the vertical, not the horizontal.
2Pe 3:18 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.
Jer 9:23 Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: 24 But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.
In his letter to the Colossians, Paul is linking the knowledge of Jesus with the good fruit of abiding in Him. Thus, the good fruit in the life of a believer is Spirit born, not manufactured by our flesh. The more that we increase in the knowledge of The Lord Jesus, the more that we will desire to please Him, not slavishly and out of duty; but lovingly, because He first loved us. A key factor in pleasing God is faith, for without faith it is impossible to please God. Thus, Paul will go on to say that we are strengthen with all might by His glorious power. So, bearing good fruit for the glory of God is not passive. It is the the overflow of fellowship with Jesus and the power of His Spirit that grants me the grace, strength and desire to do so. With joy!