This picture has to do with the Bible truth that as Christians we are to be connected to Jesus Christ–all the time. In other words, we can’t live the Christian life apart from Him. We need to be sustained all the time by His life and only then, can we produce fruit that brings glory to Him. Branches like this one, on their own will never be able to bear living fruit- and neither can we, when we live apart from God.
The Bible teaching on this can be found in John 15:1-14 (NLT)- bold font added. It can be summarized like this:
*God desires to produce fruit within us and through us ( positive actions that bless others and glorify Him).
*We are to be dependent on Him (like a branch to a vine or trunk of a tree) to initiate and carry out the positive action first in our self and then through us to impact others.
*These good works we do in conjunction with God are not to earn His favor, but to express our gratitude to Him for His kindness to us (as seen in Jesus Christ dying on a cross for us so that we could have our sins forgiven and we can be reconciled to God)
*our bottom line desire must for God’s reputation to be honored, more than our own
1“I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more. 3 You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you.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. 6 Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned. 7 But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted! 8 When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.
9 “I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love.10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! 12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. 13 There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command.
Do you desire to submit your life to Him, seeking to understand what it means to be connected to Him?