Sunday, March 10, 2024

Trees#12 - BRANCHES (Part#1)


TREES #12 - BRANCHES (Part#1)

Over the past few months we have been studying the different parts of trees like: roots, branches, trunk and leaves.

In today's continuation of the tree series, we will be focusing on Branches.

This is Trees#12 on "Branches (Part#1)".

In the Old Testament Jesus is referred to as the "Branch" and in the New Testament we (the believers) are called the branches.  Today we will be focusing on those two aspects of "branches".  Next time we will learn about "ingrafted" branches.

Notice in the Scripture passage below "My Servant the BRANCH".  Also - He "will remove the iniquity of that land in one day" - that's the Messiah!!:


And it's even clearer in the verses below - "a righteous Branch" - from David's line.  And then precisely stated: "The Lord Our Righteous Savior" - that's Jesus!!


In the New Testament (John chapter 15) we learn that we are the branches and we must have utter dependence on Jesus (who is the Vine).  In order to "bear much fruit" - (not just a mediocre amount of fruit but "much fruit" - a large amount) we must be completely and totally reliant on Him (see verses below): 

Jesus said, "I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.  He cuts off every branch in Me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit He prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.  You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.  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.  Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing."
John 15:1-5

If you are trimming a grape vine or fruit tree and throw the "bad" branches that you cut off onto a pile;  you will notice that these branches will do nothing.
It's the same with us - without Jesus we can do NOTHING.  Another interesting choice of words "Nothing" - I looked up the meaning:

NOTHING - no thing, not anything.  No part, no portion.  One of no consequence, no significance.  Something that has no existence, no quantitative value, zero.

Again, that is absolute - no beginning and therefore no ending - NOTHING. 

Another way of looking at this is the opposite of "nothing"  - With Jesus all things are possible and when we trust God we can do anything and everything that He wants us to do.

When we are talking about the "bad branches" or the "fruitless branches" - those are the areas of our life that need to be changed.  When we cut out that sin from our life, then we are building character and learning to endure hardships.  It doesn't feel good when that branch is being cut off but then afterwards our whole vine (life) becomes healthy and strong (see Scripture below):

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for photo SundayVine3_zps53326d0f.jpg 

In the township where I live, there are a few months in the fall and spring when we are allowed to burn our yard waste.  Many of the branches that I trim off during late spring sit in a pile at the back of my urban farm until burning season.  I have noticed that many of these branches that I have thrown away struggle to live and hang on to their leaves for many weeks - but they never make it.  These cast out branches always end up withering away.  
These withered & cast away branches symbolize two things:
1.  We can try living without our Lord and Savior and struggle along but without Jesus we will eventually wither away.
2.  That "bad branch" (or sin), when cast away and when not given any water (or attention) will become weaker and easier to ignore or avoid doing.

When we "remain" in God we are given certain privileges and can "ask whatever we wish."  Be careful - we are Christians and must ask according to the Father's will.  A branch on a grape vine or fruit tree will draw from the sap of the vine/tree and grow abundant fruit - that branch and the fruit glorify the vine/tree.   We must glorify Him (our Heavenly Father).

Jesus is The Branch and since His Spirit is inside of us, we are also branches drawing from the sap/strength of our Heavenly Father.

Previous Tree posts:

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