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. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. 8 By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.
There are two points to consider in this teaching. The first point is that when the life of Christ flows through our lives, from Him to us, there isn’t anything that we cannot do for the Lord. All things are possible in Him and all requests are heard and answered when prayed through our Lord. There is spiritual fruit for us to bear and we can bear that fruit when the Lord Jesus lives in us and flows through us.
The key to understanding and living this teaching is the indwelling and life-flowing Jesus. Just yesterday a young believer told me that it is just too hard to live the Christian life. This young believer is right. It is too hard for us to live the Christian life. Sin is too tempting and we just want to do it sometime. But when Jesus lives in us He lives His life through us so it is no longer us who live but Christ who lives through us. We do not live the Christian life but Christ, with His flowing energy, lives His life through us. With Him in us all good things are possible.
The second teaching here is that those who do not have the indwelling and life-giving Lord Jesus are headed to certain eternal punishment. The reference of Christ is specifically about being cast into fire, which in His teachings were always the fires of hell. Those who do not bear fruit are not attached to Christ. Those who are not attached to Christ will be cast away from Him in the time of their judgment and they will be burned. (You can watch two messages that I recently gave entitled, “Is Hell for Real?” www.gracerforlifebc.com )
According to the rest of Jesus’ teachings on hell, this burning is not a consuming but a continual and eternal judgment. Oh how we long to see men and women turn from their sin and come to know and to enjoy the life of Christ flowing through them. The contrast presented by Jesus throughout His teachings is clear, it is eternal, it is avoidable, and it is the contrast between eternal living and eternal dying. Come to the Vine and become one of His branches by faith in His work to save us from our sins. Enjoy His life flowing through you and bearing His fruit in you. There is no greater way to live or to die.
Please remember the McClain family in your prayers today. A week ago, the mom, Roberta, fell with an aneurism in her brain. They disconnected all life-support last night. The aneurism killed Roberta’s brain. Her youngest is a seventeen year-old daughter. Roberta and her husband Randy know the Lord and he is enjoying God’s peace while suffering the loss of his wife.
Pray for our teens. The struggles they face are often overwhelming to them. I was awakened yesterday with one of our teens calling asking what to do for a friend who wanted to commit suicide. Keep all of our teens in your prayers.
Next Sunday we begin a week of revival meetings with Brent Sivnksty. Pray for God to revive our hearts. God knows our needs and we are asking Him to use Brent to bring our needs to our attention so we can let God work on them.
Have a great day in the Lord,