The True Vine

1) I am the True Vine, and My Father is the Vinedresser.  John 15:1 AMP

Jesus is the Vine. God is the Vinedresser; the Husbandman; the Gardner; the Farmer. Believers are the branches. The grapevine is a very prolific plant – from a single vine comes forth numerous branches that bear many grapes. Grapes, in the Old Testament, symbolize the fruit brought forth by Israel when they obeyed God and served Him. The fruit of the vine in the Passover meal symbolizes God’s goodness toward His people.

2) Any branch in Me that does not bear fruit [that stops bearing] He cuts away (trims off, takes away); and He cleanses and repeatedly prunes every branch that continues to bear fruit, to make it bear more and richer and more excellent fruit.  John 15:2 AMP

There is a difference between pruning a branch and cutting it off. A branch that bears fruit is pruned to promote growth – so that it can bring forth even better fruit. From time to time, the Lord has to discipline us so that we can grow and be stronger in character and faith. Whoever the Lord loves, He disciplines.

No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.  Hebrews 12:11 NIV

A branch that that bears no fruit at all is useless and will be totally cut off at the trunk. A fruitless branch is not only useless and worthless, but it might contaminate the rest of the tree. It is important that we stay plugged in to Jesus, and that we allow Him to prune us and that we continue to bear good, healthy fruit.

A good (healthy) tree cannot bear bad (worthless) fruit, nor can a bad (diseased) tree bear excellent fruit [worthy of admiration]. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and cast into the fire. 20 Therefore, you will fully know them by their fruits.  Matthew 7:18-20 AMP

Bear fruits that are deserving and consistent with [your] repentance [that is, conduct worthy of a heart changed, a heart abhorring sin]. And do not begin to say to yourselves, We have Abraham as our father; for I tell you that God is able from these stones to raise up descendants for Abraham. 9 Even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees, so that every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and cast into the fire.  Luke 3:8-9 AMP

3) You are cleansed and pruned already, because of the word which I have given you [the teachings I have discussed with you].  John 15:3 AMP

The Word of God will cleanse, purify and “prune” all those who receive, believe, and obey it.

4) Dwell in Me, and I will dwell in you. [Live in Me, and I will live in you.] Just as no branch can bear fruit of itself without abiding in (being vitally united to) the vine, neither can you bear fruit unless you abide in Me.  John 15:4 AMP

Branches must “abide in” Christ and Christ in them in order to produce fruit.

Being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.  Philippians 1:11 NKJV

5) I am the Vine; you are the branches. Whoever lives in Me and I in him bears much (abundant) fruit. However, apart from Me [cut off from vital union with Me] you can do nothing.  John 15:5 AMP

The branch, by itself, never can and never will produce fruit by itself. Its life, its support and its nourishment come from the roots via the trunk. The branches are completely dependent on the trunk and roots – in fact, without them, the branch would not even exist. If we live in Christ and He and His Word live in us, then we will bring forth abundant fruit. Without Him we can do nothing. Jesus cannot produce fruit through us unless we remain in Him; united with and in Him.

6) If a person does not dwell in Me, he is thrown out like a [broken-off] branch, and withers; such branches are gathered up and thrown into the fire, and they are burned.  John 15:6 AMP

The branches must live, abide, and remain in Christ, or be cut off and burned.  Remaining, or abiding, in Christ means: You believe that Jesus is God’s Son; You receive Him as Savior and Lord; You do what God says; You continue to believe the Good News; You walk in love toward the community of believers; the Body of Christ.

7) If you live in Me [abide vitally united to Me] and My words remain in you and continue to live in your hearts, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you.  John 15:7 AMP

Branches (believers) must not only remain in Christ, but must have His words abiding in them. When they have done that, then they can ask whatever they will and God will do it for them. What a great promise!

Many people try to please God and produce fruit only with good works and by doing what they think is right. However, Jesus says that the key to producing fruit is to stay closely connected to Him, like a branch is closely connected to a vine. Apart from Christ, all our efforts are unfruitful. He makes it easy for us – as we connect, and stay connected, with Him then we are nourished by Him and we will inevitably produce good fruit.

8) When you bear (produce) much fruit, My Father is honored and glorified, and you show and prove yourselves to be true followers of Mine.  John 15:8 AMP

God can only be glorified by the branches when they remain in Christ and produce much fruit.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.  Galatians 5:22-23 NKJV

For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light 9 (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) 10 and find out what pleases the Lord.  Ephesians 5:8-10 NIV

And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God.  Colossians 1:10 NIV

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