Passover and Resurrection (4): Jesus is the True Vine

Date: 5/6/2012
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Type: Sunday Sermon
Organization: All Saints
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Passover and Resurrection (4): Jesus is the True Vine

John 15:1–8 - (A) “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. (B) 15:2 “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. 15:3 “You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. (C) 15:4 “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. (A’) 15:5 “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. (B’) 15:6 “If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned. (C’) 15:7 “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 15:8 “My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.

(A) Accept the True Vine v1
     (B) Branches not Fruitful v2
          (C) Abide in the Vine to be Fruitful v4
(A’) Accept the True Vine (and He abides in us) v5
     (B’) Branches not Abiding (dry up and are burned) v6
          (C’) Abide in the Vine to be Fruitful (in prayer, bringing glory, as a disciple) vv7-8

Renew Your View of Jesus. Jesus fulfills Israel’s role to be God’s fruitful vine (Ps. 80:8; Isa. 5:1-7; Jer. 2:21; 6:9; Ezek. 15). In John 15, at the Last Supper, Jesus is not only the Lamb but the Source of the wine at the Table. He is the source fruitfulness and abundance, as shown when the feast is concluded on the Day of Resurrection.

Receive Jesus as the Source of Life. Jesus taught His disciples that He is the vine and His Father is the Gardener. Jesus provides the life we need. We have no means of true life apart from Him. Those who disconnect from Him will dry up and receive judgment, like Judas Iscariot. Bearing fruit shows that we are becoming disciples of Jesus (v8).

Repent of Disconnecting from Jesus the Source of Life. Specifically repent of trying to live apart from Christ: 1) Renew your (internal) relationship with Jesus in prayer and learn His Word (v7). Memorize: 2 Cor. 5:7, Rom. 12:1-2, Gal 2:20, and John 14:21. 2) Revive your (external) relationships with Jesus’s disciples. Prepare for the Word and Sacrament ministry. Use church events for getting to know others (Jn 15:12: love one another). Don’t disconnect from the Body. Purpose to befriend a believer.

Gregg Strawbridge Gregg Strawbridge, Ph.D., is the pastor of All Saints Church in Lancaster, PA. He became a committed follower of Jesus Christ at age 20, discipled in the context of a University Navigator Ministry. As a result of personal discipleship he went on to study at Columbia Biblical Seminary (M.A., Columbia, SC, 1990), as well as receive a Ph.D. in education and philosophy... read more