Worthy of the Name
Scripture: John 15: 1-8
As The Deer Panteth for the Water
One of the great experiences in the world is to plant a seed in the ground, water it, and care for it until it begins to grow. Even the very tiny sprout that initially comes out of the dirt is very exciting. Growth is a wonderful thing.
Jesus has referred to himself as the “true vine” and the Father as the “vine-grower.” The vine-grower removes the things in Jesus that bear no fruit, and even the branches that bear fruit will be pruned, in order to keep the entire vine healthy and the pruned branches producing even more fruit.
The message here seems to be about staying together, staying pure, and staying connected to Jesus, understanding that it won’t always be easy. As a matter of fact, there will be times when it will be painful. Jesus is speaking to his disciples about their relationship to him as the source of their spiritual needs.
The passage speaks to those of us who call ourselves Christians. It reminds us that without Christ we are fruitless and will be “taken away” as worthless to the vine. It also calls us to present ourselves to God in prayer, searching our hearts and being willing to confess our sins so that those things in us that will hinder growth can be cut away from our mind and spirit.
It is the abiding in Christ that will cause us to develop the attributes of a true disciple, with a life that is productive and good. This is what pleases and glorifies God so much that we can ask what we will, and it will be done. Remember that being pruned and purified keeps us in Christ, yearning for those things that keep us strong and help us to have a mind like Christ and to live a life that is faithful and worthy of the name “Christian”.