I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.
I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. John 15: 1,2, 5 – 8
Jesus likens himself to a grapevine and we, his followers, as the branches of the vine. All we have to do to flourish in life and be fruitful is to remain embedded in the vine. We draw our sustenance for life from the vine. If we are detached from the vine we will not only be unfruitful but will die.
We were dead in our trespasses and sins before we were embedded into the vine by faith. When he gave us life it wasn’t apart from himself. We cannot take his life and go our own way as life is a constant drawing from him, the vine. We have to remain in him and let his life – his word, his Spirit – indwell us constantly. A branch that is embedded in the vine but stops drawing life from it still dies. We need to constantly and daily come to him to draw our life essence from him and his Word.
Besides drawing our life essence from the vine we draw our life purpose from the vine. “Apart from me you can do nothing” The purpose of a branch of a vine is to bear grapes. If it doesn’t bear grapes then it is useless and will be cut off. On the outside it looks like a live branch, but actually it is dead. You know them by their fruit. If the fruit is bad or non-existent then there’s a disconnection between the branch and the vine. Our life’s purpose is rooted in Christ, and apart from him we cannot do anything. On the outward we might even have the appearance of being successful – whether in the world or in our Spiritual life, but much of that can be dead works. “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”
It isn’t our outer appearance that glorifies God. It is our fruitfulness that stems from our rootedness in Christ. Fruit that resembles his character, his attitude, and his works. When the world sees us they ought see Christ in us as the very DNA of the vine runs through our beings bearing fruit that we wouldn’t be able to bear without him.