I Am The True Vine

I Am The True Vine

In this last of the “I am” sayings series of headers, Jesus, in John 15:1, employing agrarian ancient Eastern imagery describes himself by saying: “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinegrower.” Then, in verse 5, he goes on to reiterate: “I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing.” Once again, Jesus emphasises that it’s all about relationship and remaining connected with him. The vine, and branches by nature, grow and bear fruit. So it is in life. Life is a journey of growth, of producing and bearing fruit. Abiding in Jesus the true vine means participation in the Word and Sacraments-worship; the community/communion/koinonia of sinner-saints; and acts of loving kindness. Shorter, pruned branches remain closer to the vine—hence; they are the most healthy and fruitful. So in our lives, pruning vis-à-vis repentance and sufferings keep us closer and more connected with Christ the true vine for the purpose of growth and bearing fruit. Vines, of course, produce grapes, which are one of the symbols for Israel. Grapes, in turn, become wine—the drink of life for Jews in the Passover and for Christians in Holy Communion.

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I am the Resurrection and the Life

I am the Resurrection and the Life

In this fifth “I am” saying of Jesus in John 11:25, our Lord described himself with a view to the future. He speaks these words of comfort and hope to Martha who is grieving over the death of her brother, Lazarus. As the story unfolds, Jesus authenticates his claim as the resurrection and the life by revealing his power over death and raising the dead Lazarus. This sign was a foretaste of the future, when Jesus himself would be raised from the dead and promise all would-be followers that, one day; they too would be raised from the dead and be given the gift of eternal life. Each Sunday is a celebration and reminder of Christ the resurrection and the life, present and active among us. Life is graced with many small resurrections whenever the risen Lord gives hope to the hopeless; faith to the doubting; love to the loveless; new life to the dying.