"I [Jesus] am the true vine and my Father is the gardener. He takes away every branch that does not bear fruit in me. He prunes every branch that bears fruit so that it will bear more fruit."It is God who cares for the vine. He is the one taking away and pruning. His reputation as a gardener is at stake. He will work at making sure that the vine bears and that the yield is great.
God purges so as to form bigger, better, more flavoursome, more nutritious fruit. In the process you may lose something precious to you, but it may be in God’s plan that that loss is so as to improve your fruit and make you resemble God more in your character and behaviour.
And what is the yield in view? What fruit must come from the Christian? Christianity! Christian-ness! Christ-likeness! In fact some commentators suggest that so far as John is concerned, the sheer fact that you have been grafted into the vine is fruit, because it’s not something you can do yourself – only God can make you, a wild branch, part of the vine.
© Copyright Bruce M. Axtens, 2018