Vine and Branches
Text: John 15:1-17
I. Jesus uses a metaphor so his disciples will understand their relationship to him
A. Some have used this to justify denominations. Each denomination being a branch off of the vine (Jesus).
1. However, notice the pronouns. The branches are individuals
2. Much like I Corinthians 12:12-14, 27
B. In this metaphor, the branches are individual Christians, the vine is Christ, and the vinedresser is the Father.
1. A vinedresser prunes the vine, removing the dead and sickly growth so the vine remains productive
2. Can a branch produce fruit or even survive if it is removed from the vine?
a. Apart from Christ we can do nothing - John 15:5
b. Colossians 3:17 - Do everything in the name of Jesus
3. What is meant by being attached to the vine?
a. It is equated to having Jesus and his words abiding in us - Romans 10:8
b. It is equated to abiding – living nearly, dwelling closely
c. Abiding in Jesus is to love him - John 14:9
d. Loving Jesus is to obey him - John 14:15; 15:14
C. What is done with unproductive branches?
D. What is meant by bearing fruit?
1. Matthew 3:8 - deeds (Galatians 5:22-23)
2. Colossians 1:10 - fruit in every good work and increasing knowledge
E. What are the benefits of staying with the vine?
1. Prayers are answered - John 15:7
2. God is glorified - John 15:8
3. We show we are Christ’s disciples - John 15:8; 17:19-21
4. We have the love of God - John 15:9-10
5. We will have joy - John 15:11
II. We are commanded to love each other.
A. To what extent?
B. How is love shown
1. A willingness to sacrifice self for others
2. A willingness to obey
C. What is our relationship to Jesus if we truly love him and others?
1. What is the difference between a slave and a friend?
2. Who picked us as friends?
a. Notice that the one selecting places the criteria.
b. We do not tell God what we will accept, God tells us who is accepted.
D. What is God’s desire for us?
1. Bear fruit
2. Bear lasting fruit
3. Ask and it will be answered
4. Love each other.