If your connection to the Lord Jesus is genuine and intact, you will discover: He is the true Vine. From Him you may draw, take, and drink. Then you will experience the riches in Jesus Christ that can never be depleted. “For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness” (Colossians 2:9-10a).
We possess unimagined wealth. In Him, in this Vine, we are the grapes. In general, grapevines are rather useless. In the same manner, we are worthless without the connection to our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ. The vine should have only one goal: to bear fruit!
The branch draws the sap from the vine, and what is not required for personal growth will produce the fruit. Fruit is a concentrated juice: the value and essence of the vine. Since the vine’s nature is to use everything to climb and grow and spread its natural shoots, the vinedresser intervenes.
God, our Father and vinedresser, does the same with us, the vines. He ruthlessly severs whatever does not contribute to bearing fruit. He often uses your fellow man to do this for you. It may be another Christian, or perhaps worldly people, whom He uses as a pruning knife. The pruning tool may also be a member of your own family. It may be at work or in the community of God’s children. But always keep this one thing in mind: the knife cannot do anything, nothing at all, to harm your inner life. The pruning tool is guided by the hand of the Father with just one goal in mind:
Please read John 15, especially the first 16 verses, and immerse yourself in this Word. You wish to bear fruit. It is your goal and desire to glorify your Savior and Redeemer by bearing fruit. You desire to live for His praise and glory.
Yes, you desire to bear it. Every branch, including you and me, yes, every branch that bears fruit, He purifies so that it bears more fruit. This purification process has caused the flow of many a tear in you and also in me. The natural vine also “weeps,” according to an expert, when it is pruned by the vinedresser very early in spring. One “tear” after another falls to the ground.
You have often, and very often, been unable to cope with your fellow human beings. You feel they are to blame for what is happening to you. But know this: the Gardener has placed these people in your life so that you should bear more fruit. You may often think the hand of the Father, the vinedresser, is merciless and severe. He has no compassion! On one hand, you may be right. He does not want to coddle you. It is not the shoots that glorify the Lord but the fruit itself! He wants to enjoy this fruit and receive His praise.
The Lord is seeking it in you. This is what we read in John 15:5, 8. Bringing forth fruit depends on whether you abide in Him, the true Vine, whether you rest in Him and His glorious, completed work of redemption! The Father is glorified when you bear much fruit. You should be an eager student! You can assimilate the love of the Father. You shall radiate it in honor and praise to Him.
When you continually draw from His love anew, your joy will constantly grow. The abundance of the fruit will be more and more to the glory of His wonderful name and to the glory of Christ. You will no longer desire to walk in your own strength. You will only want to live as His servant and slave, as His bondservant. In this manner, the Lord Jesus will always reveal anew how much He loves you and how He wants to give you great and greater things. He will make you a vessel to share His love with the world as you confess Him as your Savior, in season and out of season.
In John 15:16, we read of this lasting fruit. This is what the Lord has chosen, ordained, and appointed us for. We want to detach ourselves from everything, from absolutely everything that hinders us from bearing lasting fruit. Let us also not confuse our own actions and good works with divine fruit.
There are many people who are very zealous in their apparent service for the Lord Jesus, and yet they lack the life in Christ. One must not confuse one’s own zeal and will with the work of God.
How precious are the words of John 15:11, where the Lord says: “These things have I spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.”
Yes, let me emphasize it again: fruit, more fruit, much fruit, and lasting fruit! This is our calling. Yes, we are chosen to live and bear fruit for the glory of God and the honor of God and in praise of our exalted Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!