Archive for May 19th, 2018

John 15: The Vine and Branches

Saturday, May 19, 2018

We continue our exploration of the way in which Jesus describes himself, helping us to sustain strength on our difficult journey, to remain always in and for the Lord.

Because he understands the difficulties of our lives, Jesus explains our connection to him with a simple yet powerful image. This power, wisdom, strength, and understanding were predicted by the prophet Isaiah. Listen while I sing you this song, a song of my friend and his vineyard. (Isaiah 5:1)

Later, Jesus tells his followers – as he tells us – just how important we are to his kingdom.

I am the Real Vine and my Father is the Farmer. He cuts off every branch of me that doesn’t bear grapes. And every branch that is grape-bearing he prunes back so it will bear even more. You are already pruned back by the message I have spoken.

Jesus says to his disciples – as he says to us – that we are essential to God’s plan.

Live in me. Make your home in me just as I do in you. In the same way that a branch can’t bear grapes by itself but only by being joined to the vine, you can’t bear fruit unless you are joined with me.

Jesus wants each of us to experience the joy of sorrow becoming celebration, of grief turning to gladness.

I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. My commandment is this: love one another, just as I love you. The greatest love you can have for your friends is to give your life for them. And you are my friends if you do what I command you.

Jesus leads us into the newness of redemption and resurrection with the grace of fidelity. Jesus leads us from fear to mercy with the gift of transformative love. Jesus shows us the Way from shadow to sunshine and invites us to join him in outrageous hope.

Tomorrow, Isaiah and The Vineyard Song.

When we compare other translations of John 15, we discover how we might become strong branches on Christ’s sustaining vine.  

Image from: https://redeeminggod.com/sermons/john/john_15_1-8/


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