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  • Rick LoPresti

The 9 principles of the vine


John 15:1-16 is part of John’s record of the discourse Jesus gave at the last supper (Jn 13-17). This passage describes the nature of our relationship with God as that of a husbandman (farmer, vinedresser), the vine, and the branches. God the Father is the husbandman, the man Christ Jesus is the grapevine, and Christians are the branches. Grapes and the products of grapes are symbolic throughout the Bible of fruitfulness, blessing, and abundance. There are 9 principles in this passage about our relationship with God that are vital:

The first is that branches that bear no fruit are cut off.

A. Vs 2 - Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away

B. Vs 6 - If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men

gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned

C. Mt 3:10 - And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which

bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

D. Mt 7:19 -Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire

E. Mk 11:14 - Jesus answered and said unto it, No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever

F. Jud 9, Is 5:1-7, Eze 15, Mt 21:33-41 – parables of vineyard

G. Lk 13:9 - if it bear fruit, well: and if not, then after that thou shalt cut it down

The second is that the branches that bear fruit are purged so they will bring fourth more fruit (Vs 2). The literal meaning of purging is to prune trees and vines from useless shoots. Spiritually it means to cleanse of filth or impurity (Heb 10:2 – only other verse). God removes the things from us that are misdirecting the resources He puts into us to fruitless things. Purging is only done to branches that are producing. It is not a judgment. It is a validation.

The third is directly related to the second, and is that the husbandman desires more fruit from the branches.

A. Vs 2 - more fruit

B. Vs 5 - He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit

C. Vs 8 - Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples

D. Vs 16 - Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go

and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain

We are chosen and ordained ( to set, put, place, to lay by, fix, establish, appoint) by God to bear fruit that remains.

The fourth is that our relationship with God can only be maintained through His word. .

A. Vs 3 - Now ye are clean through the word

1. Jn 17:17 - Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth

2. Eph 5:26 - That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word

B. Vs 7 - If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall

be done unto you

C. Vs 10 - If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my

Father's commandments, and abide in his love.

D. Vs 11 - These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that

your joy might be full.

E. Vs 12 - This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you

F. Vs 14 - Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.

The fifth is abiding. This means to permanently live at an address.

A. Vs 4 - Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in

the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me

B. Vs 5 - I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same

bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing

The sixth is that we cannot bear fruit by ourselves.

A. Vs 4 - As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye,

except ye abide in me

B. Vs 5 - without me ye can do nothing

The seventh is prayer. All relationships are based on communication. Prayer is our communication with God.

A. Vs 7 - If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall

be done unto you.

1. Jn 14:13-15

2. 1Jn 5:14 - if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us

B. Vs 16 - whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you

The eighth is love. Our relationship with God is based on love, not force.

A. Vs 10 - If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my

Father's commandments, and abide in his love.

B. Vs 12 - This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.

C. Vs 13 - Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends

The ninth is joy. Without joy, being a Christian is a drudgery and burden.

A. Vs 11 - These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that

your joy might be full.

B. Neh 8:10 - the joy of the LORD is your strength

C. Jn 16:20-24

D. Jn 17:13 - they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves

E. Rom 14:17 - the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and

joy in the Holy Ghost

F. Gal 5:22 - the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy

G. 1Pet 1:8 - ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory

H. Jude 24 - to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy

If we employ these 9 principles in our walk with God, we will be productive, fruitful Christians. Fruit can be both quality (character), and quantity (leading other souls to God).


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