Abide and Bear Fruit - Pt. I

So that you may believe - Gospel of John  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  57:11
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Understanding the vine

For us to get a better understanding of our passage we need to get a better understanding of the culture of the people who are hearing what Jesus is saying this to.
He is speaking this to Hebrews in Israel who Vineyards mean something too.
Vineyards are important to the economy of Isreal.
A golden vine adorned Herod’s temple as sign of power and authority
The vine is used in scripture in several uses
The Past Vine-Israel nation (Ps80:8-9; Isa80:8-19; Isa5:1-7)
Psalm 80:8–9 “8 You removed a vine from Egypt; You drove out the nations and planted it. 9 You cleared the ground before it, And it took deep root and filled the land.”
The future vine -vine of the earth (Rev14:14-20)
This is the unbelievers, the unsaved. Those who depend on the world for their sustenance and satisfaction. Whereas the believers depend on Jesus Christ, the unbelievers on the world. The vine of the earth, well. will be cut down and destroyed. (invite everyone to turn to)
Revelation 14:14–17 “14 Then I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and sitting on the cloud was one like a son of man, having a golden crown on His head and a sharp sickle in His hand. 15 And another angel came out of the temple, crying out with a loud voice to Him who sat on the cloud, “Put in your sickle and reap, for the hour to reap has come, because the harvest of the earth is ripe.” 16 Then He who sat on the cloud swung His sickle over the earth, and the earth was reaped. 17 And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, and he also had a sharp sickle.”
Revelation 14:18–20 “18 Then another angel, the one who has power over fire, came out from the altar; and he called with a loud voice to him who had the sharp sickle, saying, “Put in your sharp sickle and gather the clusters from the vine of the earth, because her grapes are ripe.” 19 So the angel swung his sickle to the earth and gathered the clusters from the vine of the earth, and threw them into the great wine press of the wrath of God. 20 And the wine press was trodden outside the city, and blood came out from the wine press, up to the horses’ bridles, for a distance of two hundred miles.”
The present vine (Jn15:1-5) Jesus Christ, the present, the true vine
Tonight we will look at part of this passage about the vine, the branches and the fruit, yes, and unfruitfulness over the next couple of weeks.

The True Vine Passage

John 15:1–2 NASB95
1 “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.
John 15:3–4 NASB95
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.
John 15:5 NASB95
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.
Anything significant stick out to you in this passage?
Who is the true vine (v.1); who is the vinedresser (v.1)?
Who can you assume is the branch (v.2)? Who does the pruning (v.2)?
Who is clean (v.3) because of the word?
Clear instruction (v.4), what is it, and why?
What is a surety given (v.5)?

The True vine (Jesus)

There is a simple truth stated (v.1); this carries us back to (14:6) for this is another of the great “I AM” statements.
If there is a true vine, what else must there be (v.1)?
Who, what could be a untrue vine?
Vineyard terminology would be very common to them. Jesus later will use it in other passages (ref: Mt21:33-44)
Going back, Jesus had rocked their world by saying he was leaving, one would betray, one would deny, all would scatter.
They had troubled hearts. Jesus was bringing comfort to troubled hearts. Going from comfort to assurance and a call to abide in our passage tonight.
Vine dresser picture here
What do you believe the definition, description of a vinedresser is?
Defined as: (N) noun: vinedresser a person who prunes, trains, and cultivates vines.
In the O.T. we see the use of the vine as Israel as noted before, how did the vinedresser prune, train, cultivate the vines then?
In the N.T. there is a difference in that we have a personal relationship with the vinedresser and the vine for we are the branches.
Look at (v.2) your version may say “takes away” another may say “cuts off”
In the Greek it is “airea” - to raise, lift up, take away, remove
that is part of the what the vinedresser does, cultivate.
The ones taken away are either
Lifted up to get more of the sun, so they can bear fruit
Take away: Remove, cut off for they were never really abiding in the vine for there was no fruit.
What is the purpose of pruning (v.2)?
To prune: : to cut off or cut back parts of for better shape or more fruitful growth.
In the Greek it is transliterated as to cleanse, purify, to expiate
Morris said: “Left to itself a vine will produce a good deal of unproductive growth. For maximum fruitfulness extensive pruning is essential.”
Tenney states on this verse: “Dead wood is worse than fruitlessness, for dead wood can harbor disease and decay. God removed the dead wood from His church and disciplines the life of the believer so that it is directed into fruitful activity.”
In looking at (v.3) how were “you” already clean?
We are talking about the continual cleansing (Jn13:10; Eph5:26)
God’s word is cleansing agent; condemns sin, inspires holiness, promotes growth, reveals power for victory
Ephesians 5:26 “26 so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,”
Tenney stated: “As Jesus applied the words God gave Him to the lives of the disciples, they underwent a pruning process that removed evil from them and conditioned them for further service.”

A vital relationship (branch / vine)

John 15:4–5 NLT
4 Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me. 5 “Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing.
What do you see as “vital” in (v.4-5)?
Go back, read it slowly again, can you see that it is a mutual remaining (abiding)?
Abide, remain, think about what Jesus means on this.
Boice says: “When the Lord says ‘abide in Me,’ he is talking about the will, about the choices, the decisions we make. We must decided to do things which expose ourselves to him and keep ourselves in contact with Him. This is what it means to abide.”
Comfort to a troubled heart started back in chapter-14, after the shake up in chapter-13. Jesus now is telling them even in His departing they are to stay connected, and he will be connected with them.
Abiding in a choice, they would need to make it, the next section will giving warning if they do not make the right choice.
Trapp uses a good word play: “All our sap and safety is from Christ. The bud of a good desire, the blossom of a good resolution, and the fruity of a good action, all come from Him.”
In the introduction tonight I mentioned the:
Past vine- Israel the nation/people.
This is term that the disciples would be familiar with so Jesus needs to clarify that the vine is not Israel. He is the vine. They needed to stay connected to Him, the True vine (v.1).
The branches purpose, bear fruit. If you are abiding in Him, and He is you. YOU WILL BEAR FRUIT
What fruit, the vine’s fruit (Jesus); we have His Spirit so it is the Spirits fruit that is evident (Gal5:22-23); Much fruit. It will be evident.
What is the purpose of fruit? (bonus question)
To nourish
To reproduce more fruit
Abiding is not just the branch (you and me) to the vine (Jesus) but Jesus to us too.
A branch is still a branch if not attached, but it cannot produce fruit if not attached. It is just deadwood (more on this next week).
One more quote:
“‘Without me ye can do nothing;’ if this be true of apostles, much more of opposers! If his friends can do nothing without him, I am sure his foes can do nothing against him.’” (Spurgeon)
(summarize) (prayer) (Close)
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