“Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country!” – John F. Kennedy
I have often said that this famous comment could very easily be applied to the life of the Body of Christ…just replace the words ‘your country’ with ‘the Church’.
We are told by Yeshua that He is the vine and we are the branches…John 15
This parable, like many others given by our Savior in the Gospels, is intended to teach truth upon truth upon truth…given by our very Jewish Savior, He taught with a Hebraic influence and a Hebraic style. He was not Greek! He was a Jew living in a world infused with Greek, Roman, Palestinian and even Babylonian and Egyptian influence.
The Hebrew language is multi layered. Many deep meanings are found in Hebrew words and even the letters. It is the same with the Old testament stories, writings, poetry, prophecy: it is the same in the teachings of Yeshua…especially His parables. They are intended not just to teach precept…but example!
They are deep, multi-faceted, and layered teachings…one truth or treasure discovered which leads to the next.
This parable of the Vine and the Branches is no different!
Imagine one coming into the vineyard and noticing the healthy vine and its ripe fruit! The hungry traveler eats the fruit and is not only satisfied, but is reenergized, refreshed and made new. Yet, who are these travelers? They are unbelievers, un saved! we who are saved, sanctified, and sent are part of the vine! If we continue to eat fruit, we are not only cannibals, but we devour it all so there is none left for the lost world traveling in the parch desert.
You are saying, “but wait! we must receive sustenance too! Christians need the fruit of the vine as well!” No! you are missing the point! We need no fruit, because we receive nourishment from the vine! From Yeshua!
The Church is filled with genie lamp rubbing, fill my cup, blessing seeking, fix my problem Christian fruit eaters! instead of being the Church of Acts, we learn about them, ask for a handout spiritually or physically, then go home!
In order to produce fruit we have to stop eating it! Receive your nourishment from the Vine! From your warrior prayer closet! In your requests for God’s Will not your own to be done! Empty yourself of your own desires and self seeking pleasures, hear from the Lord, read you Word! LISTEN! WAIT! BE STILL! STOP WHINING!
You will be pruned! It will hurt! Your fruit will grow, however! And when the morning comes, maybe unexpectedly, a lost, parched, hungry traveler will happen upon your fruit! Since you will have become someone seeking to bless, provide, sacrifice for, and give to your fellowship and the others there within, rather that looking to be filled…Your fruit will be good, and be a blessing to the weary traveler! And in time, He too will seek to be grafted in! Be faithful to the Call of Yeshua! Not to your flesh!