We all need to feel we belong. We need to be part of something bigger than ourselves.
In calling himself the vine, Jesus wants to give us that connection.
Just as branches receive their life from the vine to which they are attached, Jesus says that we are totally dependent on him. A branch becomes weak if it receives little nourishment from the vine.
Without Jesus, eventually we will die — forever.
Our society promotes an individualism that rebels at this. Unbelievers may even scoff at Christianity. Yet the fact is that everyone lives by some belief. We’re all attached to some vine.
If we’re not attached to Jesus, what is it? For some it’s the human mind. Others look to money or success. Still others draw their strength from other people. In the end, all such “vines” will fail.
Jesus alone has defeated death and can keep us alive forever. Jesus alone can produce in us the priceless fruits of faith he desires.
Jesus produces in us the fruit of prayer. He promises, “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you” (John 15:7). Attached to him, we learn to pray, “Your will be done” (Matthew 6:10). And God’s will is always for our best.
Jesus produces the fruit of joy — not simply a passing pleasure but an eternal contentment. He says, “I have told you [about my Father’s love] . . . that your joy may be complete” (John 15:11).
Jesus also produces the fruit of love: “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you” (John 15:12). The Bible calls love the greatest of gifts, without which we are nothing.
Through Jesus we are intimately connected to the source of life. In the church we participate in that connection with other believers. Come and celebrate that connection every Sunday!