1 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3 You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.
5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
The key word in this passage is the word “abide.” To abide in something means to live there or to dwell there. If you are travelling and stop at a motel you abide there overnight. When you get home you are abiding in your own house or your own apartment. It is not a difficult word to explain or to understand.
In this teaching by Jesus we learn that He wants us to abide in Him while He abides in us. When this unique relationship takes place and is maintained something happens: the fruit of the life of Jesus comes out of us. Have you ever had a friend for so long that you knew what each other was thinking before anything was said? It is like you are abiding in each other’s minds. The Lord Jesus wants us to abide in Him and He wants to abide in us to that degree and more.
Suppose the Lord Jesus truly abode in you and helped you complete every thought and every sentence. Suppose the indwelling Lord Jesus was able to guide you in your purchases and in your investments. Suppose the Lord Jesus while living within you guided your thoughts about God and about people and about life and about sin and about righteousness and… you get the picture. When Christ abides in us we have a relationship with Him that is quite unique. We turn to Him for every answer, we turn to Him with every problem, and we turn to Him with every joy. He is in us, abiding, living, and happily dwelling.
Our lives, filled with His, will naturally produce His attitudes, His reactions, and His concerns. The fruit of the Holy Spirit will come from the branches of our lives. So here is the question: Who or what is abiding in you? Whose fruit you are bearing will tell you who is abiding in you. When we are bearing uniquely spiritual fruit we can be confident that it is coming from the abiding Lord Jesus.
Last night my dad and I went to a meet and greet with Tonia Khouri. Tonia is running for the US Congress seeking unseat Bill Foster. Take a moment to look at her website. As a Christian woman she brings godly character to the table. As a successful business owner, she and her husband own Green T, she understands hard work and its benefits.
Sunday morning I will be embarking on a new book of the Bible. 2 Corinthians was Paul’s fourth letter to the church at Corinth. Paul started this church and truly loved the people there. But Paul and the word of God were under constant attack by those who would pull this church away from its moorings. I am looking forward to this series as I see our church in the chapters of this letter.
Have a great day in the Lord,