On today’s podcast we are teaching from John 15:1-11. How do we know if we are producing fruit? is what will be discussed today on RIOT Podcast, a Christian Discipleship Podcast
Today we will study John 15:1-11, where Jesus makes His seventh and last “I am” statement: "I am the vine." Jesus considers His disciples to be His friends, He reveals to them that He is the source of their life, in Him all things are new and good. We are the branches in His illustration; if we remain in Him, we can do anything, but without Him, we can do nothing. As branches, we have the privilege and duty of sharing His life and abiding in Him. As His friends, we have the privilege of understanding His perfect will and the option to submit to it.
Let’s read vs 1-11 and uncover all of its fruit.
The planting of vineyards was essential to Israel's economy and way of life back then. According to history, a golden vine decorated Herod's temple. When Jesus employed this picture, He was not introducing anything new; it was well-known to every Jew. Let's dissect four aspects of Jesus' teaching to better comprehend what He is saying. The first is the vine itself.
In the Bible, there are three different vines. The past vine is “Israel”, the future vine is “the earth” as described in Revelation 14:14–20, and the present vine is “Jesus”, which Includes His church as its branches. Let's break down each one, starting with the past.
1. The Past Vine: The past vine mentioned here is an act of God’s grace, He transplanted Israel into the land of Canaan. He blessed them with fruit, milk and honey.
2. The second vine talked about here is “the future vine of the earth” Revelation 14:14-20
So, let's look at what Jesus says, “The first, was that He is the vine, and the second, was that we are His branches.
This crucial idea of connection and communion is emphasized in a number of the biblical passages that relate to Christ and the believer. In Eph 5:25-33, it talks about Jesus as “The Bride” and we as “His bridegroom”. In 1 Cor 12, Jesus is the Head of the body and we are its members, and in John 10 we are Jesus’ “sheep” and He is “our shepherd”. Jesus, in referencing the branch being broken off here, is saying, that a body part that is severed from the body will die.
As Christians, we must accept that we are branches that need to be in communion with Jesus in order to live and breathe.
How can we know for sure that we are continuing to abide in Christ? Is there a distinct feeling we get?
We must keep in mind that while the branches do not consume the fruit, others do. We don't grow fruit to please ourselves, but to help others. We should be the type of people who nourish others through our words and actions. Prov 10:21 says, “the Lips of the righteous feed many.”
There are several different kinds of spiritual fruit that are named in the Bible. Romans 1:13 says, “we bear fruit when we win others to Christ.” In John 4:35 it says, “we are a part of the harvest.” Romans 6:22 says, “We grow in holiness and obedience when we are bearing fruit.” Paul, in Romans 15:28 said that believers that are committed to bearing fruit have a dedicated life bringing of bring God glory. And we know that Gal 5:22 says, “we will bear the fruit of the Spirit which are Joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” Bearing fruit will always build up others around us and point them to Jesus.
What does yielding fruit not entail? That would be living in the flesh. Living in the flesh is living in our effort that produces dead results and cannot be reproduced. If it were Spirit-produced fruit, then it will go on producing from one life to another.
In John 14:27, Jesus spoke about having God's peace living within you. In verses 9-11, He talks about having love and joy in you. The first three fruits of the Spirit are love, joy, and peace. When we abide in Jesus, we will always produce His love, joy, and peace in our hearts.
To wrap up all that we have learned today, we can sum it up like this; We, as branches are to remain in the Vine, we are now entrusted with the dual roles of being faithfully obedient to God and to produce fruit so that others can eat from us.
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