Spiritual Warfare   

 

Spiritual Warfare:  The World, the Flesh, the Devil & the Glory of God

    
Spiritual warfare for the Christian is about truth and falsehood, love and hate, good and evil, and the integrity of God's Word. These aspects are experienced in the realms of the world, the flesh, the devil and his devil spirits. Our weapons of warfare are found in the Wisdom of Christ: God's Word & Holy Spirit
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Why Did Jesus Say, " I Am the True Vine?" (John 15: 1-20)

 

Vine

 
 

"I Am the True Vine" John 15: 1-20

A Response

     Jesus Christ portrays Himself as the true vine of God to His disciples for a two-fold purpose: First, to let His disciples know that even though He would not be physically present with them always, He would send the Holy Spirit to be “with” and “in” them (Joh.14:17 ASV).  Second, He uses this opportunity to instruct them to remain in close fellowship with Him, the only True Source of life, through the power of the Holy Spirit, that they may bear spiritual fruit, receive answers to prayer, and have fullness of joy. 

     Although I prefer to use the KJV, the verses below, regarding the “True Vine,” were taken from the 1965 Bible in Basic English, because of the difficult language sometimes used in the King James Version. Some explanations have been added in brackets for a clearer understanding of certain verses.

The Gospel of John, Chapter 15: 1-20

1 I am the true vine and my Father is the gardener.

2 He takes away (Greek airō [to raise up, elevate, lift up or redirects]) every branch in me which has no fruit, and every branch which has fruit he makes clean, so that it may have more fruit.

     Christians who continue to bear fruit will also continue to grow and prosper spiritually. The Lord will continue to purge us from all sin, in that He "makes clean" for the branch to bear even more fruit.  In First John we read,

1Jo 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. 

     God's Word instructs us,

Rom 6:4 ". . . that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." Walking in newness of life is the same as abiding in Christ.

3. You are clean, even now, through the teaching which I have given you.

4 Be in me at all times [in fellowship or relationship with Him] as I am in you [by the Holy Spirit]. As the branch is not able to give fruit of itself, if it is not still [remaining] on the vine, so you are not able to do so if you are not in me [walking in the Spirit].

5. I am the vine, you are the branches: he who is in me at all times as I am in him, gives much fruit, because without me you are able to do nothing.

     Jesus Christ is the source of life unto the branches or the body of Christ. Christ is the Head or "source" of life to the church (the body of Christ).  As children of God, we have Christ in us through God's gift of the Holy Spirit given to every believer. He is in us at all times; and therefore, we are to abide in Him at all times, and not the carnal or sinful nature.

     The Apostle Paul reveals the mystery, "Christ in you" the hope of glory, Col. 1:27.  We need to walk with the Lord in order to abide in Him, and manifest the fruits of the Spirit in our lives.

6. If a man does not keep himself in me, he becomes dead and is cut off like a dry branch; such branches are taken up and put in the fire and burned (consumed).

     This verse simply means that a person who is not abiding in God, then he or she is not growing spiritually in the knowledge and ways of God, and is lacking in the fruits of the Spirit.  This person is or becomes useless in the things of God, and is similar to a withered branch that men would gather and burn because it bears no fruit.  This is an analogy that Christ uses and does not mean that He is literally or figuratively going to take us, throw us in the fire, and burn us because we are not bearing fruit.  This verse has been terribly misunderstood. 

     In the KJV they interpret this part of the verse as “men will gather you and throw you into the fire” clearly this is not God, but as it states “men.” In a sense, a Christian who is not bearing spiritual fruit will be lacking in true purpose and also be lacking in God’s power to stand up under, and overcome many of the assaults of life, as well as their witness for Christ. 

Jesus Christ said,

Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men (Mat 5:13).

7.  If you are in me at all times, and my words are in you, then anything for which you make a request will be done for you.

8. Here is my Father's glory, in that you give much fruit and so are you my true disciples [truly committed to Christ]

9.Even as the Father has given me his love, so I have given my love to you: be ever in my love.

We are to remain in the love of Christ.  The next verse explains how we are to remain in the love of Christ.

10. If you keep my laws, you will be ever in my love, even as I have kept my Father's laws, and am ever in his love.

If we continue to do what Christ has told us to do, we will remain in His love.

Rom 5:5 And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.

11. I have said these things to you so that I may have joy in you and so that your joy may be complete.      

     The verses above confirm God’s promises to those who walk by His Spirit or in other words remain in Christ. They that remain in close fellowship with Him will reap spiritual fruit, receive answers to prayer, and have fullness of joy.

What an offer!

12. This is the law I give you: Have love one for another, even as I have love for you.

Jesus clearly states what He means by keeping His laws. Love one another as He has loved us.

     As stated in 1Jo 1:7 above, "we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."

13.  Greater love has no man than this, that a man gives up his life for his friends.

14.Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.

15. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.

16. Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

     Here Christ is speaking to the first disciples gathered together with Him just prior to His Crucifixion.  As we will see below, Christ is preparing them for the hate and persecution that these first disciples will endure from the unbelievers in the world.  Christ has chosen them out of the world to go forth and proclaim God's Truth and for this they will be hated. 

17. These things I command you, that ye love one another.

18. If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.

19. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.

20. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.

The Holy Spirit will guide and direct our lives through God's Word, and empower us as we yield our lives to Him. By remaining in the vine, we remain as lights in the world, and remain as the salt of the earth being witnesses of Christ.

Joh 13:35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

Fellowship is the believer's key to fruit, answered prayer, and fullness of joy. This fellowship with God through Christ is also referred to as the Sanctification of the believer.

     The nine fruits of the Holy Spirit in a believer's life are a power house  and a buffer indeed against the flesh [fallen nature], the world,and having our victory in spiritual warfare. By this we put on our belt of truth and all of God's armor, in the manifestation of the reality of Christ in us.  These fruits are:

Gal 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.  The Spirit of God brings life to the soul.

Eph. 5:9(For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)

     When we walk in the Spirit, we are abiding in Christ, "the True Vine," and will reap fruit. We begin to realize that we truly died with Christ on the cross, and now live in the power of His resurrection. The battle is already won for every believer in Christ!  We are asked to stand against the darkness in the victory of Christ.

     We consider our flesh already crucified with Christ, and walk in newness of life, bearing witness to Christ, and overcoming the world.

(Click on the link below if you would like a further understanding of this topic.)

Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin . . .

Other links:

Proof that Jesus Christ is the Good Shepherd and Only Door to God

If you would like to know more about salvation please see:

What is Salvation and How to Know if We Are Saved?

Orig. post 7/18/05 - Updated  last: 5/2012-

 
 

 

 

 

   
 
     
      

Pulling down strongholds with the truth of God's Word, the power of the Holy Spirit, and in the operation of faith in our spiritual warfare with the world, flesh and devil!

1Jn 4:15 Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.


  By Magdalene:

http://battleinchrist.com


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