‘Without me, you can do nothing’

In 2005, Guinness World Book of Records claimed that the largest grapevine in the world is found in Hampton Court near London, England.

In 2005, Guinness World Book of Records claimed that the largest grapevine in the world is found in Hampton Court near London, England. That vine was planted under the direction of Lancelot Brown in 1769.

In 1887, its base was four-feet thick … by 2005, it was 12 feet at the base, and from this singular root, branches and vines stretch out for more than 120 feet.

Even though some of the smaller branches are very far away from the root, their connectivity to the main stem still permits them to yield grapes.

None of this happens by accident. It’s the result of methodical, skilful cutting and pruning.

And, obviously, this pays off — for in 2001, the Hampton Court vine produced 845 pounds of black dessert grapes.

Jesus lived in a land where grapevines were common and in John 15:1–11 (please take the time to read this fascinating passage in its entirety), Jesus referred to Himself as, “the true vine.” His analogy, of course, has to do with how all Christians are a part of Him, the true vine. The implications and applications are numerous and noteworthy.

To begin with, (verses 1–3) discipline is addressed. As a grapevine must be pruned and unproductive or dead branches removed, so discipline must come to those who believe in and follow Christ.

And as with a grapevine, the purpose of this is not to injure the vine, but to increase its health and productivity.

In the next two verses (4, 5) Jesus explains that life and the resultant fruitfulness flows only one way … from the vine to the branches.

In Verse 5, Jesus says that abiding in Him results in much fruit and He adds, “… without me you can do nothing.”

The branches are entirely reliant upon their connectedness to the vine. For this reason, the real acid test for any alleged or professing Christian group (or person for that matter) is how they treat Jesus Christ, both theologically and practically.

If they minimize or marginalize Him in any way, shape or form, then they are probably not a part of the true vine.

Finally, like the massive grapevine in Hampton Court, there is also remarkable growth and longevity to “the true vine.”

This Vine, this powerful root, has sent out productive, fruitful branches for the past 2,000 years that have covered the entire globe!

“The branch of the vine does not worry, and toil, and rush here to seek for sunshine, and there to find rain. No, it rests in union and communion with the vine; and at the right time, and in the right way, is the right fruit found on it. Let us so abide in the Lord Jesus.” — Hudson Taylor

Pastor Ross Helgeton is the senior pastor of Erskine Evangelical Free Church.

— Faith & Reflection

 

Just Posted

Big Valley man denied bail again in Drumheller court

Victor Foley faces drugs, weapons charges

Stettler Lightning defeats Coaldale Copperheads in nailbiter

Stettler scores in shootout, defeating Coaldale 3-2

Stettler Wildcats go entire season undefeated

Downs Drayton Valley Warriors 28 - 7 in last game of season

Canada Post strikes leaves small shops in the lurch as holidays approach: CFIB

Rotating strikes began in Victoria, Edmonton, Halifax and Windsor

Election watchdog seeks digitally savvy specialists to zero in on threats

Move follows troublesome evidence of online Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election

Crown says man guilty of B.C. girl’s 1978 murder based on alleged confession

Jury hears details of girl’s 1978 murder while Crown says man should be convicted of girl’s murder based on alleged confession.

CFL playoff picture still muddled heading into weekend action

League revealed last week no fewer than 64 potential playoff permutations

New monitoring of vessel noise impact on endangered whales announced

Federal government to monitor underwater ship and mammal noise in B.C.’s Salish Sea

Three men charged in Alberta man’s murder will go straight to trial

The three men are charged with first degree murder in the death a 20-year-old from Alberta.

Liberals write off $6.3 billion in loans as part of money never to be collected

That includes student loans and a $2.6 billion write off that came through Export Development Canada

Most Read