Jesus Is the Vine—Followers Are Branches
15 “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.
What an amazing moment in scripture to reflect upon. Jesus was addressing His disciples even while Judas was meeting with the Jewish leaders in plans to have Him arrested. Still, Jesus took these last few hours to encourage His remaining disciples. What’s so great is that the same encouragement applies to us today.
Jesus is the true vine! He is not just any vine amongst many vines; He is the only true vine. That means He is our source, our connection to God, the vinedresser. What encouragement is Jesus extending to us? The same words “abide in Me and I in you” He spoke to the disciples, He is speaking to us. There is a reciprocity that must take place and through that connection, we become branches to the true vine of Jesus. As branches, we bear fruit, not just any fruit but faithful fruit that comes directly from the vine. Jesus states that remaining in Him we will bear much fruit…not barely enough or blemished fruit but exceedingly good fruit.
That fruit is in abundance because the Father prunes us so that we can hold fruit that is living versus the dead. This ought to bring us joy even as we go through the pruning season. The cutting shears may be sharp and even hurt but the result is a healthy fruit that is tasteful in the service of the Lord.