John 15 documents a great visual that Yeshua provided to help us as His followers. Read the scripture and then we can review some key points afterwards.
Jesus Is the Vine—Followers Are Branches
1“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. 2“Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit. 3“You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. 4“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. 5“I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. 6“If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned. 7“If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8“My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples. 9“Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. 10“If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. 11“These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.
Let’s review a few key points that jump out to me. You may find others as well.
- Yeshua is the vine. He is essential to supply the branches.
- The Father is the vinedresser. He is in control.
- Disciples of Yeshua are the branches. Our purpose is to bear His fruit. We must stay connected to Him to remain healthy and effective. We can not “go it alone”.
- The Father will remove branches that bear no fruit. They will be cast aside and burned. This should get our attention as a stern warning. Arguably He is talking about those who claim to follow Him or did follow Him at one time follow Him. Those who never knew Him would not be branches connected on the vine to Yeshua. We must not grow complacent! Challenge ourselves to keep knowing, loving, and serving our Father… bearing His fruit rather than our own.
- Even those branches that bear fruit, shall be pruned by the Father so that we will bear even more fruit. Pruning is sometimes a difficult process for the branch, but it helps!
- Yeshua also, as is common in scripture, ties together our obedience to God’s commandments with our love for Him.
- He wants us to be joyful! It is His joy in us, not joy we achieve on our own apart from Him.
Prayerfully reflect on this visualization for our relationship with our Father and ask Him to show you areas in your life where you may be able to apply the word. Reflect on whether or not you bear fruit, and if so, if it is the Father’s fruit. When you may be going through difficult situations, consider perhaps that He may be pruning you to bear even more fruit in the future. Seek to understand His commandments so that you may obey them to demonstrate your love for Him. Pray for Him to help you experience His joy in you!
Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.