Bible study reading
Please prayerfully read through the following portions of ministry related to this lesson.
In 15:1-11 we see that the vine and the branches are an organism to glorify the Father by expressing the riches of the divine life…The church, the Body of Christ, is not an organization but an organism. What is the difference between an organization and an organism? A table, for example, is an organization, for many pieces of wood are assembled to form one entity. Why is a table an organization and not an organism? Because in the table as a unit there is not one organ. There are no organs in a table because there is no life in a table…In John 15 this organism is likened to a vine tree. The grapevine is used as a figure of this wonderful organism. Within this vine tree we have the tree itself and all of its branches. The Lord Jesus said that the vine tree is just Himself (v. 1). He is the tree, and we are the branches of this tree. By this clear picture we can see that we are the branching out of the tree, for the branches are the branching out of the vine tree…This is not an organization; it is an organism that has life with many organic elements, organs, and organic systems growing in it. (Life-study of John, msg. 33, section 2)
The husbandman is God the Father. The Father as the husbandman is the source, the author, the planner, the planter, the life, the substance, the soil, the water, the air, the sunshine, and everything to the vine. As we have already pointed out, whatever God the Father is, has, and can do has all been embodied in the vine tree. The Son as the vine is the center of God’s economy and the embodiment of all the riches of the Father. The Father, by cultivating the Son, works Himself with all of His riches into this vine, and eventually the vine expresses the Father through its branches in a corporate way. This is the Father’s economy in the universe. (Life-study of John, msg. 33, section 4)
The vine and the branches are an organism to glorify the Father. What is the meaning of the word glorify here? It means to have the intent, the content, the inner life, and the inner riches released from within and expressed. The vine and the branches are an organism to glorify the Father, to have the intent, the content, the inner life, and the inner riches released and expressed from within. As an organism to glorify the Father, the vine and the branches express the riches of the divine life. When the vine tree bears clusters of grapes, that is the time when the riches of the divine life are expressed. This expression is the glorification of the Father because the Father is the divine life. (Life-study of John, msg. 33, section 2)
No plant other than the vine tree can illustrate adequately the living relationship between us and the Lord. We are the branches of the vine. What kind of relationship does this suggest to you? The branches are good for nothing except to express the vine. All that the vine is and has is expressed through the branches. Individually, the branches are the regenerated ones. Corporately, they are the church, the Body of Christ (Eph. 1:22-23). The branches, the believers in the Son, are for the expression of the Son with the Father through the fruit-bearing. (Life-study of John, msg. 33, section 5)