I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. —John 15:5
Take away the branches from the main stem of a tomato plant and you will not get any tomatoes. Take away the branches from the main stem of a pepper plant and you will not get any peppers. Take away the branches from the trunk of an apple tree and you will not get any apples. Take away the branches from the trunk of an oak tree and you will not get any acorns.
Take away the branches from the main trunk of the vine and you will not get any grapes. Take away ourselves from Jesus and we will not bear any fruit that honors our Father. Vine, branches, fruit— that is the progression in plants and trees and that is the progression of fruit-bearing believers. There is no other way. Jesus said, “…for apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). Did you hear that? We can do nothing without Jesus that would bear godly fruit. Yes, we can do all kinds of things apart from Jesus, but those are ungodly things, things that are done from worldly or satanic motivations. We read in First John 2:15-17 to “not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.” In Matthew 16:23 “Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.” We need to be aware of how Satan works (II Corinthians 2:11; I Peter 5:8).
What a joy it is to see a plant or tree’s branches sagging with much fruit on it. In the same way we honor our Father by bearing much fruit and also show to truly be the disciples of Jesus. So, what are our branches looking like? Are they still connected into the vine or off by themselves? If we, as a branch, are off doing our own thing and not connected to Jesus then all we are doing and the “fruit” that we are bearing has no eternal value! Only the fruit that we produce while in fellowship with Jesus will have godly, eternal significance. Oh, that our branches would be sagging with much fruit as we are connected to Jesus and by doing so, honoring our Father.
So it is with the world. All that is done apart from Jesus has no lasting, godly value. Do not be deceived. All that is done apart from Jesus has some other motivation behind it other than the love for God and godly love for people (Matthew 22:37-40). We have an enemy in this spiritual conflict. Yes, be on guard!
Dear Father, oh, that I would stay connected to Jesus and bear much fruit to honor You. Please help me to sensitive to the enemy and his schemes. May this be so!