I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me, and I in him, bears much fruit. For without me, you are able to do nothing.
There are three things I would like to point out from this passage.
- We need to live in Jesus. Jesus said in verse 9-10, As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my precepts, you shall abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s precepts and I abide in his love. We live in Jesus when we keep his commands. Many people mistakenly think they can do anything they want, as long as they do enough good works to compensate for what they do. But Jesus never said we live in him when we do good works. He tells us to obey his commands so we can live in him. The commandments are to be treated as a whole. We cannot pick and choose. Breaking one, means breaking all.
- Jesus needs to live in us. Jesus lives in us when we receive him. We reject Jesus when we break his commands. Jesus will not force himself on us when we reject him. He respects our decisions. We cannot expect Jesus to live in us when we break his commands.
- Jesus expects us to bear MUCH fruit. This is why we need to live in Christ and he in us. Jesus is not expecting us to bear fruit. He expects us to bear MUCH fruit! This is possible only when we obey his commands. In John 15:12 is one of the most often abused verses in today’s culture: this is my precept: that you love one another, just as I have loved you. The word love has been thrown around today that when I ask those who use that word to define it, all I get is a lot of words that do not mean anything. Scripture tells us God is love. God is revealed in Jesus Christ who says he is the Way, the Truth and the Life. Love therefore points the right path. It speaks the truth and it gives life.
We bear much fruit only when we point to Jesus Christ. When our actions point to our selfish desires and lust, this is not love. When our actions tolerate evil by compromising on the truth, that is not love. When our actions lead to death, by encouraging others to continue in their sin, that is not love.
Love, leads to life because God is LIFE! We bear much fruit only when our actions lead to life. This is what love means: to give life.