“I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5
Man has accomplished so much! We’ve put men on the moon. We’ve created microprocessors the size of a quarter that contain millions of transistors. We’ve built great cities with amazing architecture. We’ve learned how to transplant a heart from an accident victim into the body of man dying from heart disease! With our education system and the plethora of colleges at our disposal, we can do just about anything! The sky is the limit! Right?
Jesus reminds us – and it’s recorded in John 15:5 – that He is the vine and we are simply branches. He tells us that we are able to do nothing without Him. He tells us that the only way we can bear fruit is by remaining IN HIM! Now, how can this be true? Man can do anything… right? What is Jesus saying here? Has he not seen the great works of man? Jesus is talking about LASTING and ETERNALLY SIGNIFICANT FRUIT! He is talking about doing things that would have eternal impact. Sure, we might be able to transplant a heart, but can we heal someone or give life to something that is truly dead. We can send a man to the moon, but can we give a man eternal life? Sure, we can create drug that will sedate a man, but can we give him peace that passes all understanding?
The fact is, man is limited in what he can do. He can accomplish some things as God has given man intellect and creativity, but all that man can accomplish will eventually be destroyed and cannot be taken with him once his body gives out. Only those who remain in Christ can produce fruit that will last forever! Only those who abide in the vine do work that will have eternal significance. Only those who walk in the Spirit will be able to make an impact on others that will result in peace, joy, and eternal life!
Are you abiding in the vine? Are you bearing fruit? Will your life’s accomplishments ultimately be tossed in the fire and burned up or will you be able to see the results of your efforts in eternity? True satisfaction comes from knowing that you’ve made a difference – that your efforts have not been in vain. The only way to bear good fruit, long lasting fruit, is to abide in the vine of Christ. This is done through daily prayer, quiet time, reflection, worship, Bible study, and fellowship with other believers, and by letting God’s Spirit lead you in your daily decisions. Are you abiding in the vine?