Chosen by Jesus to bear fruit!
Scripture reading for April 27th: John 15
Grapes are one of the most widely cultivated crops in the world. There are many varieties and all require some care and tending to make them fruitful and keep them healthy. They provide food, juice, and wine. The branches are good for little because they are weak and bend easily. Jesus used this plant as an example for His disciples of how they must stay attached and produce fruit.
“I am the true vine, and My Father is the Gardener. He cuts off every branch in Me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in Me and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself: it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Me.” (John 15:1-4)
Jesus told them that He was the true vine and that they were the branches that were to produce the fruit. The Father was the gardener that pruned the branches that did not bear fruit. These branches were good for nothing but burning in the fire. (vs. 6) The branches that produced would also be pruned to make them even more fruitful. Branches must not think that they can produce fruit on their own. They must abide in the vine to draw the needed nutrients. Even so, disciples must stay attached to Jesus in order to produce fruit. They must submit to pruning to increase their yield. Not producing fruit is a bad option that yields being cut off! “You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit–fruit that will last.” (John 15:16)