In Jesus had just told His Disciples that He would be leaving them. Knowing how disturbed they would feel, He gave them this lovely metaphor of The True Vine as one of His encouragements.Jesus wanted His friends, not only those eleven, but those of all time, to know that He was not going to desert them, even though they would no longer enjoy His physical presence. His living energy and spiritual reality would continue to nourish and sustain them. It would sustain them just as the roots and trunk of a grape vine produces the energy that nourishes and sustains its branches while they develop their fruit. Jesus wanted to remove any misunderstanding about what He meant
He said that no branch can even live, let alone produce leaves and fruit, by itself.
Cut off from the trunk, a branch is dead. Just as vine branches rely on being connected to the trunk from which they receive their energy to bear fruit, Jesus’s Disciples depend on being connected to Him for spiritual life and the ability to serve Him effectively. The fruit we produce is that of the Holy Spirit—Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Goodness, Kindness, Gentleness, Fruitfulness, and Self Control Our source of life and spiritual fruit is not in ourselves; it is outside us; in Christ Jesus. Jesus under-scored His point more strongly by saying, “Apart from Me, you can do nothing”. No believer can achieve anything of spiritual value independently of Christ Jesus.
So, we depend on Jesus for everything; starting with our very life—“For in Him we live and move and have our being” including our reconciliation with God through Him No one can serve God effectively until he is connected with Jesus Christ by Jesus is our only connection with the God who gave life and who produces in us a fruitful life of righteousness and service.
Fruitful And Empty Vines:
Mentioned more than any other plant in the entire Bible, the grape vine was very important culturally and economically in Biblical times. Because of its centrality in everyday life, it is often used symbolically in scripture. A fruitful vine was a symbol of obedient Israel, while wild grapes or an empty vine spoke of Israel’s disobedience
This woody vine is only cultivated with effort and hard work. records part of the process. Typically grown on a hill, a vineyard needed to be cleared of many stones which are common in Israel. Only then could vines be planted. A wall or hedge built around the vineyard, alone with watch tower, kept thieves at bay. The plant requires pruning in order to bear fruit
Uses of grapes and grape leaves:
The grape vine can grow on the ground, on stakes or poles, or can be planted in an orchard and trained to climb trees. The sweet fruit with white flesh, and green, red, or purple skins, grow in clusters. The produce can be eaten fresh, dried as raisins, pressed for wine, or made into vinegar. Grape leaves are also used in some Middle-Eastern recipes. Wine was often mixed with stale cistern water to make it drinkable.
Grapes in the Bible:
The vine is listed in (pomegranates, honey, wheat, barley, fig trees olive oil), as one of the seven species in the good land that God was giving to the nation of Israel. It was a land where the grapes grew in large clusters as reported by the expedition of Hebrew spies sent into Canaan Moses sent one man each from all the 12 tribes to go and check out Canaan. The grape clusters were so large that they carried them on a stick between two men. This gift from God was meant to be enjoyed and men were not to go to war until they had tasted of their own grape harvest according to less they die in battle and another man benefits from it and his hard work.
The True Vine:
Jesus said, “I am the true vine and My Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit, He taketh away; and every branch that beareth fruit, He purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. 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. 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. 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. If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is my Father, Glorified, that ye bear much fruit, so shall ye be my disciples.”
All those characters play a part in Jesus’s metaphor. The Vine is Christ; the Vinedresser is the Father; the fruit bearing branches represent the 11 and all true Disciples of the Church Age.
Jesus said, “I am the true vine and my Father is… .”
The Gospel of John refers to Jesus not simply as the vine, but more specifically as the TRUE vine. The implication is that in contrast to Israel which became unfaithful and incurred the Judgment of God, Jesus remains faithful and thus fulfills Israel’s calling to be the vine of God. In we see where God brings the vine (Israel) out of Egypt and planted it in the promised land, but because of disobedience, the vine yielded “wild grapes”. Jesus is called the “True Vine” because He remained faithful
Jesus is not the trunk or the root; He is the Vine. He is the True vine who fulfills the destiny to which Israel was called.