Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Grafted Into Christ

 

  

John 15:1-8

The Vine and the Branches

15 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. NIV Bible Gateway.com

   A vinedresser plants and tends his vines for the purpose of seeing them produce grapes. God, as our vinedresser, encourages us to bear spiritual fruit. He wants us to have a character like that of Christ - marked by love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal. 5:22-23). Our Father wants to ensure that believers will be fruitful; for this reason, they are removed from the dead tree of humanity and grafted onto the living vine, Jesus Christ.
   After His baptism, Jesus was "full of the Holy Spirit," who led Him to the next step (Luke 4:1). Christ's life and ministry were the result of the Spirit's empowerment, and when we become believers, God sends the very same Helper to indwell us. In the language of vineyards, the sap from the vine flows into a grafted branch, giving it life and the capacity to grow the kind of fruit typical of that plant. The branch and the vine become one life. The Living Bible translation says, "Let your roots grow down into him and draw up nourishment from him" ( Col. 2:7).
    Some people run away from the Christian life because they think they cannot do it. And they're right: They cannot, but the Holy Spirit can. When we are one with Jesus Christ, the Spirit of God lives His life through us. That doesn't mean we are free from responsibility - the Spirit can do His work only as we wisely choose to yield to Him. When we are obediently following the Lord, our joy and peace are not dependent upon circumstances; the One in whom we are rooted is our joy and peace.
Stanley, Charles F. "Grafted Into Christ." In Touch: Daily Readings For Devoted Living August 2016. Atlanta: In Touch Ministries. page 36. 

 

 

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