Jesus flows joy into our life
The Vine and the Branches
15 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.
9 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.
The sermon, titled “The Vine and the Branches,” delivered by Pastor Jeff Sullivan, revolves around the biblical passage of John 15, where Jesus uses the metaphor of a vine and branches to illustrate key spiritual concepts. The metaphor emphasizes the importance of abiding in Jesus to bear spiritual fruit and experience true joy.
Jeff Sullivan begins the sermon by recounting childhood memories of enjoying fruits from trees and bushes, highlighting the joy and simplicity found in the abundance of nature. He ties this to the theme of the passage, stating that just as enjoying free fruit brings happiness, Jesus offers salvation freely.
The sermon delves into the concept of different frameworks people adopt to understand life, illustrating the importance of the redemptive narrative given by God. Jeff stresses that the fundamental narrative is one of redemption and restoration, with Jesus being the Vine, offering salvation and goodness to those who remain connected to Him.
He further elaborates on the importance of abiding in Jesus, drawing on analogies like flowers, kangaroos, and marriage to illustrate the depth and meaning of abiding. Abiding in Christ is shown to result in peace, love, and joy—spiritual fruit that reflects a true connection with Christ.
Jeff encourages the congregation to abide in Jesus, highlighting the role of church involvement and Life on Life Discipleship as means to deepen this connection. He emphasizes that abiding in Christ is essential for spiritual growth, fulfillment, and the ability to bear fruit that impacts the world positively.
The sermon concludes with a prayer, expressing gratitude for the clarity and love God offers, and a call for individuals to connect with Christ, abide in Him, and bear the fruits of love, peace, and joy.