John 15:5 “…For without me you can do nothing.”
Like all chapters in the bible, John Chapter 15 is also very significant and important. It was our Lord speaking to his disciples before being crucified. He is strengthening them with strong promising words. Further if you read, you will come to know that not only his disciples, but whoever abides in him and walks with him will also have these promises in their life. Jesus is not talking to any multitude or Pharisees here, but he is speaking to his disciples. Who are his disciples? Disciples are the chosen ones, the sheep who has a shepherd, the true followers, and the one who surrendered and left everything for their master. But unfortunately many of us are not up to this standard which the Lord desires.
He does not want us to be like multitudes who just seek temporary benefits and like Pharisees who boast in his self righteousness.Unfortunetely both of these groups do not have any relation with Jesus. The people, who say proudly that they are Christians, let them judge themselves whether they belong to multitudes, Pharisees or Disciples.
We are too good to judge others but today let us ask ourselves as to where we belong.Multitude needs signs and miracles. They want something which will make their worldly life easy. Pharisees on other hand are little different. They are religious and much disciplined. They know the things better than a multitude, but they work on their own principles. They please men and their community and are self righteous. But a disciple is a true follower who wants to please his master. For that reason,he leaves everything which was important for him and follows the footsteps of his master. More than that, a disciple only knows the heart of his master. A disciple has a proper guidance and he knows where will be his next step. Psalms 23 says,” Even though I walk through the valley of shadow of death I will not fear evil because you are with me.” Now who can say this bold statement? The one who makes Jesus as his Shepherd can say this. The next step of David is death, but he is saying that he will not fear evil. Why? Because he is not following his own steps but he is following the step that is walking ahead of him…that’s why he says,” I will not fear evil because you are with me.” A disciple knows his next step. Many around us fear and don’t know where to put their next step but I thank God that I am a disciple.
In the beginning, God created man to be fruitful and so he planted him in a fruitful Eden garden .But due to sin alone, the ground which was more fruitful then, was also cursed. He put man out of the garden. God never created thorns, but it came purely due to sin. Sin brought the death of inner man. So instead of love, kindness, goodness, longsuffering which is the fruit of spirit, it gave birth to thorns (works of flesh i.e. hatred, adultery etc.) which was never from God. Even though man was cursed due to his sin, God still wants us to be fruitful again. How we can be fruitful? Yes, by abiding in him. Adam and Eve were in the garden as long as they abided with God but once they were away from Him, they were cut down from the place where God planted them. Remember you have not grown by yourself but you are planted. You are planted by God. So if we are planted by God, He desires that we must be fruitful.
The subject for this week is about a branch which bears fruit. John 15 speaks about one wine and two different branches. One branch bears fruit. Another one does not bear fruit. One branch is pruned to bear more fruit. Another one is cut down forever. One branch is still with the wine but another one is cast down into the fire. Now this was very difficult for me before, but when I sat in the presence of God he filled me with His wisdom to understand the most important text.
Now my question to God was,” how can a single wine bear two different branches? (one is non-fruitful and another fruitful).” If one branch can bear fruit then why can’t the other branch be fruitful? So, it is not the problem of wine but it is the problem of branch….Every branch can bear fruits, but it depends upon how it will receive those things which is needed to bear fruits from the wine. The wine is powerful and it has all those things which can make the branch fruitful.
Now here the wine is our Lord Jesus and we are the branches.As we are like branches, we need to receive from the wine and bear fruits.Now how we should receive and what we should receive to be more fruitful?
These are good questions; let me try to answer these queries.
Now in verses 7 and 10, Jesus says,” if you abide in me and my words abide in you, you will ask what you desire and it shall be done for you and if you keep my commandments you will abide in my love.”So every Christian who abides in Jesus must receive the word and keep his commandments. This is what verses 7 and 10 says. Now my question to the reader:
Are you the one who just abide in Jesus without receiving and keeping his words?
If you are abiding in him, you should not only receive the word but you should also keep his word. Many of us receive the word of God but we fail to keep the word of God.
To keep the word means to obey, to practice, a doer of the word and to walk according to the principles of God. Each and every Christian who abides in Jesus must receive the word and keep His commandments. How you should receive the word? Mathew 13:23 says, “But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces some a hundredfold, some sixty and some thirty.”As I mentioned earlier, one branch was unfruitful because it did not receive the things which was essential to bear fruits. Though this branch was attached to the wine it was unfruitful. Many proudly say that they are Christians (attached to wine) but almost unfruitful in all our ways. Why there is hatred and envy still in your mind? It is not the problem of any pastor or anyone you see around. Stop complaining about others. Be a good ground. Receive the word and keep the word so that you will bear the fruit of spirit. What are the fruits of spirit? It is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control.(Galatians 5:22).If you do not bear this fruit of spirit in your life, you are like a branch with green leaves around but without fruits. God is not looking for a branch with some green leaves. You may have all glories of this world in your life but still unfruitful in all your ways.
A small prayer from your heart can change you today…this is your day…God bless