John 15 joy vs. happiness
There is a big difference between joy and happiness. Happiness is a reaction to
something great. Joy is the product of someone great. Let us never forget the difference, nor
fail to enjoy both happiness and joyfully on this earth. Jesus died to erase guilt and shame.
Children do this …one moment happy next second crying…emotions
“Chosen by God” the importance of knowing I’m eternally secure!
Jn. 15:1 The True Vine
I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.
In the 15th chapter of the Gospel of John, a drama is unfolding in the form of a parable told by
Jesus. A drama is unfolding in this passage, and indeed, in our lives. As in many good plays,
the primary characters are identified at the beginning of the script. Jesus begins by giving us
the identity of the players involved in this scenario.
(For those of you who wish to study this a little further, Isaiah 5 is a companion chapter to John
15. A small amount of comparison will reward you with a good deal of insight into the heart of
God on this matter.)
Three Parties: ( 3 individuals involved)
…my Father is the gardener… v:1
The Gardener, or, if you have the KJV, the husbandman is God the Father. He is the care-taker
of the vineyard. He is in charge of the garden. It’s His crop, and He takes responsibility for the
outcome. He tends His garden. He chooses a fertile location, clears the soil, and plants only
the best vines. Then He builds a watchtower and waits for the harvest.
…I am the true vine… v:1, 5
The second member of the cast is Jesus Himself. He is the Vine. What is meant here is the
trunk of the vine. The tree-like portion of the vine is rooted in the soil. It is the life source of
the rest of the vine. Uproot or damage this part of the plant, and it spells death for the entire
…you are the branches… v:5
The third and final character revealed in this drama is the branch. I should actually say, more
correctly, the rest of the cast of characters are the branches. In this parable, every one of us is
participants, whether we wish to be or not. We are all branches. That much is predetermined.
The only two things yet undetermined are (1) whether we are fruitful or unproductive, and (2)
what will be our fate?
Three Parts: (3 components)
The Savior is the Source. The Source of life, salvation, and the Supply of whatever nutrients are
needed to produce “fruit.”
The saints and the sinners. The same Source of supply is available to all the branches – all of
This is to my Father’s glory that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.
The sweets and the souls.
I guess most people tend to interpret the “fruit” mentioned here in the sense of evangelism. In
this case, the fruit produced would be the souls won to Jesus.
It would seem from the context that Jesus is talking about spiritual fruitfulness such as “the
fruit of the Spirit. The product of having the life force of Christ at work within our lives.
In either case, we are expected to produce results. The Father will expect to find evidence of
the life of the Son in us. Fruit is the result of a good, healthy, living attachment to the Lord.
Fruit is the result of a vital, nourishing connection with the vine. the main purpose of allowing
the branches to remain on the vine, to begin with. You do not allow branches to flourish and
grow just for the sake of nice, leafy foliage. “Oh, that’s such a fine growth of grape leaves you
Illustration: Grape orchards in Israel
Why is that?
Branches require sap to grow in order to support an
ever-increasing expanse of greenery. All that extra sap going to produce healthy leaves actually
takes some of the much-needed sap away from the process of producing fruit. Now as much
as those vineyard owners might enjoy the beauty of large leafy vines, they would much rather
see a vine-full of large juicy grapes. That is the real breadwinner of their business. They might
derive a small, or a relatively sizable, income from craft makers who wish to but their vines for
wreath and basket making. That’s unlikely, but nevertheless, winery, not “vinery,” is the
backbone of their industry.
The Father is not in the business of making wreaths. He is in the business of producing fruit.
The kingdom of God is not about decoration or ornamentation. It is about generation and regeneration.
Three Possibilities: (3 possible case scenarios)
…apart from me, you can do nothing … v:5b
Nothing of eternal significance will ever be done apart from a relationship of vital
connectedness with Christ. The mechanisms and machinery of men are just that… The best-laid plans of men are just that… But with this life-flow type of union with Christ, on an individual
level, productivity and fruitfulness are made possible. As we “remain in Him” or “abide in Him.”
His life-producing, life-generating source flows through us as water flows through a pipeline.
But these energies, powers, and nutrients are not intended to be contained in us only. We are
meant to be conduits (branches) for this life-flow and to channel it into the production of fruit
that gives the Father pleasure.
…every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful… v:2b
If you are productive for the kingdom, if you are producing fruit that pleases the Lord, you will
experience times of pruning…if you have the 1st, you will have the 2nd …
Pruning is a necessary step to increase productivity. It is a process with varying degrees of
severity – depending on the present condition.
Severance of Vital Connectedness
…He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit,…such branches are picked up, thrown into
the fire and burned… v:2, 6
If the first two conditions are being met in us, we need not fear the last stage of which Jesus
informs us. However, if we do not produce the fruit that pleases the Gardner, and if the pruning
is ineffective, the 3rd scenario will be the end consequence.
Severing our vital connectedness with the Vine is the final and dreadful act in the drama of
humanity. Being “cut off” separated from Christ, and thrown into the fire, is the end result of an
Fruitfulness or productivity is the determining factor as to whether a branch is pruned or
completely severed from the vine to be burned.
“Only one life twill soon be past
Only what’s done for Christ will last.”
Are you producing fruit that brings the Father glory?