April 11, 2008

The True Vine

Isaiah 5:1-7; John 15:1-11

The vineyard of the LORD Almighty is the house of Israel …
Isaiah 5:7


Isaiah’s message is wrapped in beautiful language, with figures of speech borrowed from the everyday life of his listeners. In Isaiah’s parable, the vineyard represents God’s people. God gave his much loved people the best possible attention, carefully “planting” them in a fertile place where they could bear much “fruit” as an example to the surrounding nations. But the vineyard became corrupt and fruitless, eventually to be condemned and abandoned.

In the New Testament, Jesus tells us that he is the key to turning a worthless vineyard into one that yields a wonderful harvest. Jesus himself is “the true vine,” and his branches are the redeemed people of God. All who remain connected to Jesus “bear much fruit.”

Jesus emphatically asserts that he alone is the one who makes the branches fruitful. The only reason they bear fruit is because he grafts them to himself. Those that do not remain in him are like fruitless branches that wither and must be cut away and burned.

Do you experience this spiritual connection with the Lord Jesus?

Jesus empowers all who are grafted into him. He loves us, even as God the Father loves Jesus, his one and only Son. Jesus wants us all to bear fruit through self-giving love.

Father, thank you for arranging for us to be redeemed by your Son and grafted into him. Help us so that by your Word and Spirit we remain in Christ and bear much fruit. Amen.

About the author — Victor Atallah

Rev. Victor Atallah is the broadcast team leader for The Back to God Hour Arabic ministry and the general director of Middle East Reformed Fellowship. These meditations are based on texts of Arabic broadcasts aired a few years ago and an Arabic commentary on the book of Isaiah prepared for publication. Rev. Atallah and his wife, Lisa, live in Larnaca, Cyprus, where The Back to God Hour Arabic ministry is based. The ministry reaches Arabic-speaking people throughout the Middle East and North Africa, introducing them to Jesus Christ, Savior of the nations.

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