I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. John 15:1
As a symbol of Israel, the vine was lacking. Israel was dragged through the mud and wandered for a long time. Just because they came out of a 40 year drought in the desert doesn’t mean they didn’t find their way back to a wasteland of mis-led faith and surrender to foreign fates. Jesus was the true vine that came to grow a kingdom. He came to save Israel from itself and its oppressors. The savior also came for the rest of us. Not as an afterthought, but Christ came with intention.
Abide in me, and I in you. 15:4
We are called, by Jesus, to obey and follow him. We are without fruit when we are without Jesus. When we are set adrift, we are without union and fellowship. A branch without contact to the vine is lifeless hence we are dead in our sin. It took Israel a long time to grasp these concepts, but when they did, they flourished.
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. 15:6-8
A genuine life with Christ is marked by an abundance of fruit.
This fruit comes form the Spirit and includes such things as love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22) among other things. We have the calling to be in communion with Jesus and to fish for men. We are to be a witness of the good news to others.
As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. 15:9
By abiding and remaining in Christ, we set the bar for our walk. We should walk in a way the praises the Lord and calls attention to His goodness. We can flourish, too. As modern-day people, we have grand opportunities that no other societies could possibly dream of. We have the Lord’s Word right at our finger tips on our smart devices. There are a multitude of versions and languages in which to read the Bible. We can freely preach the good news on most street corners without breaking the law and we can invite people to worship with us without feeling afraid.
Opportunities to abide in the Lord’s will and presence are in abundance in this life of ours.
Many people still find themselves in a desert of sorts and think that the rules are too binding. They don’t realize that God’s commands are freeing through His son Christ Jesus. We can move in love and truth, abiding in the Lord’s grace without the constraints of the law. The time is now, don’t waste it.We can move in love and truth, abiding in the Lord's grace without the constraints of the law. The time is now, don't waste it. Click To Tweet
Join me each Monday as I blog devotions through the Bible. This month we will focus on the Book of John. I hope you discover a good reading plan over the Lenten season. I recommend reading one of the Gospels. There are some excellent resources and plans on the YouVersion Bible App.