“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

The disciple of the Lord Jesus needs the constant reminder that “apart from me you can do nothing.” Our strength is in Christ alone; apart from him, fruitfulness is a mere mirage. He who trusts in himself will, in time, discover an alien presence, as did the Apostle Peter. Our only safety is found in Jesus Christ; he is our security; he is our strength. With this in view, William Cowper (1731-1800) wrote the following hymn titled “Dependence.”

To keep the lamp alive,
With oil we fill the bowl;
‘Tis water makes the willow thrive,
And grace that feeds the soul.

The Lord’s unsparing hand
Supplies the living stream;
It is not at our own command,
But still derived from Him.

Beware of Peter’s word,
Nor confidently say,
“I never will deny Thee, Lord,”—
But,—“Grant I never may.”

Man’s wisdom is to seek
His strength in God alone;
And e’en an angel would be weak,
Who trusted in his own.

Retreat beneath his wings,
And in His grace confide!
This more exalts the King of kings
Than all your works beside.

In Jesus is our store,
Grace issues from His throne;
Whoever says, “I want no more,”
Confesses he has none.

Is your life characterized by a total reliance on Christ alone?

Taken from . . .
Renewed by the Spirit: 365 Daily Meditations
by Ralph I. Tilley
copyright © 2016 Ralph I. Tilley
paperback and Kindle editions available at

Author: Ralph I. Tilley

I joyfully identify with the long history of the orthodox, evangelical stream of the Church. Theologically, I am a conservative. On issues of secondary importance, I will not quibble with my brothers and sisters in Christ. We are called to “maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” I would hope I have no doctrinal biases; however, I realize that is a practical impossibility: “Now I know in part.” You can read more on the About page.