“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener” John 15:1
How long can you thrive if your connection to the internet, power and any devices were cut off? We have become so dependent on these things to facilitate our conversations, livelihood and affairs. Zoom, Facebook, email, Whatsapp, if any of these would be taken away life would prove to be difficult. This verse explains a different kind of connection. One that is so vital and if it were not intact a believer’s walk would be hard. The grapefruit was a common vine in the times of the book of John, that is why it is used all over many illustrations in the bible. It required special care, trimming, to grow high-quality grapes. The branches of the vine must be one with the root vine for them to produce a bountiful harvest. A branch that appeared to be connected to the vine because of its superficial attachment was removed.
Isaiah 5:1-7 gives a breakdown of a farmer who put up a vineyard and gave it everything needed for its sustenance. He built a watchtower, a winepress in the vineyard. But when he came to harvest of all his hard work, he got bad bitter grapes. What a disappointment, it turned out to be a false vineyard. There are many false vines in the world promising the best results but disappointing like the vineyard in Isaiah. Man-made religion and philosophies have replaced the place of God’s heart in us which as a result has cut short the supply of fruits.
Fruits can only be harvested from their respective sources, a mango can not come from an orange tree or vice versa. Jesus likened Himself to the true vine because it’s only through Him that we get life and life in abundance. Every other vine is false, it doesn’t matter the investment put into it, it will yield bitter fruits. We must remain connected to the true vine in order to bear fruits.
A husbandman is more than a farmer. He knows every nitty-gritty detail about the grapes. He has an intimate relationship with each grapevine, he comes to know them uniquely and individually. The vinedresser will be present from the planting of the cuttings and will wait for 2 to 4 years before they begin to bear fruit. Any branches that are not bearing fruit then will be pruned, any foreign things that he did not plant are uprooted by their roots. The disciples of Jesus are like the branches on the vine. Every branch requires a decision, He will look at its position, thickness, colour and the number of buds it has.
In the same way, God the father is our vinedresser (1 Corinthians 3:9). When we do not walk in obedience He prunes us. Through His marvellous providence, He separates us from false teachers and doctrines. Being a diligent vinedresser means He must keep pruning every fruit-bearing branch because if He does not do it our fruit will reduce (John 15:2). Sometimes these experiences bring us closer to Jesus and make our roots deeper in Him. God is the one who nurtures us and defends us.
King James Version (KJV)
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.”
New International Version (NIV)
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.”
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinegrower.”
New American Bible (NASB)
“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.”
English Standard Version (ESV)
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser.”
The Living Bible (TLB)
“I am the true Vine, and my Father is the Gardener.”