[Jesus says] “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)
Bible Reading: John 15:1-8
[Jesus says] “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. 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. If anyone does not abide in Me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be My disciples.”
Looking past the full leaves and colorful fruit, amazing discoveries can be found by studying the grapevine. This woody vine is considered a perennial and is present at all seasons of the year. It is cultivated to produce useful fruits.
In order to fulfill its purpose, the vine must be lifted up to send out branches that will bear fruit. The vine’s main function is to draw water and nutrients to provide the shoots with everything they need to promote growth. Clusters of grapes are produced. Some are sweet, yet others are sour.
Under the care of the vinedresser, the grapevine is prepared for the best opportunity to raise crops. This is done through pruning. Pruning is the most important part of the growing process. If the branches are not pruned, they become unmanageable and draw energy away from being fruitful. This will lead to the death of the vine. Trimming the shoots and removing the excess allows the branches to produce a higher quality fruit.
Jesus is our true vine. Through Him, we receive everything we need to be strengthened in the faith. Separated from the vine, we wither and die. God the Father lifted up Jesus, so that in Him we may live and bear fruit. He prunes away the excess things that will draw energy away from what is needed. As a testament to God’s work in us, we are able to bear much fruit.
Discussion: What are the ways that God provides water and nutrition to strengthen His people in faith?
Prayer: Almighty Lord, thank You for grafting me into the True Vine. Please continue to sustain me in this life and produce in me fruit that is in keeping with Your good and gracious will. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.