The Vine – #4 – The Branch
John 15: 5
Does a vine need branches to bare fruit? Where would it grow the fruit if it weren’t for branches? Well guess what! With God, nothing is impossible! Watch this short video (2:22) and you will see exactly what I’m talking about.
The Jabuticaba – The Brazilian Grape Tree Grows Fruits & Flowers Directly on The Trunk! Amazing, but then, God never ceases to amaze me with the things that He is able to do. He especially blessed the country of Brazil with some of the most incredible plants and animals I would never have seen if it weren’t for the internet.
“Well”, you say, “that is a tree and not a vine”, so back to Jesus and the illustration of “The True Vine” where The Branches bare the fruit. There are a multitude of lessons that can be drawn from the fact that WE are the branches, but before we dive into that pool, let’s take a closer look at how the vine is developed by the husbandman.
Let’s watch this short video (9:33) that covers training young vines to develop the strength they will need to support the branches & fruit that will eventually grow.
What Did We Learn?
In the video we observed that the vine is totally dependent upon the husbandman for all it’s training and development. Jesus depended totally upon His Father for His growth and development. The disciples (branches) had Both The Father & Son working to prepare them to bare fruit.
Let’s summarize what has happened so far.
First of all, we found out that God (The True Husbandman) had a lot of work to do in preparing The Land (Israel) to be ready for The True Vine (Jesus, The Christ) to be Planted (Conceived & Born).
Then The Vine had to grow up and develop to the point where it was strong enough to support branches. The earthly husbandman in the examples we are using today is Roy Kladaric.
Roy shares the same philosophies that are prevalent throughout the industry, and he holds it to be true that there can only be one vine (One Savior, Jesus) coming from the root structure in order for it to thrive. Then, that ‘trunk’ must be carefully developed by the husbandman to the point where it is ready for branches.
1. When training a young vine, enemy #1 is Tendrils & Off. Shoots. All the tendrils are Removed as the vine is growing. up to pencil thickness, because they steal the energy from. the rest of the plant.
All unnecessary growth is removed from the young vine so. that all the nourishment is focused on the growth of the. trunk, and that includes the removal of all the buds of new. laterals (off shoots) that try to branch off & all tendrils (the. curly, clingy things).
During Jesus training and development God made sure that He had no offshoots & tendrils distracting Him from what He needed to learn. As a matter of fact, God didn’t even allow any ‘branches’ (Disciples) to grow until Jesus was 30, baptized, and had spent 40 days & nights in the wilderness being tried & tested.
A parallel could be made with the branches, and things that take away from the growth of the fruit. Do we have ‘tendrils’ that are attaching us to things that are detrimental to our Christian growth?
Look at the husbandman who is removing healthy things off of the vine in order for the growth to increase according to His plan. Sometimes even ‘good things’ can distract us in bad ways. When we are willing to allow God to work in our lives HE will remove the things that we don’t need.
2. Pencil thickness = enough strength to survive & do it’s job. The pencil thickness standard illustrates God’s understanding of when we are strong enough to handle bigger challenges in life, in our growth as an instrument for good. To be able to handle the weight of the fruit, the branch must be strong and well grounded in the vine or it will break.
If you watch enough of these videos, that show the husbandman working with the branches, you will see how easily branches snap off when they are young & tender. In like manner we all need to constantly maintain that strong connection with Jesus so that our growth continues according to God’s will.
2. Creating a crown at the wire with three (one spare) laterals, called cordons.
Note: I like to think of the two cordons that stretch out from the trunk as the arms of Jesus outstretched just waiting to give us all a hug. From each of these ‘arms’ coming off of the trunk, it is suggested that no more than 8 branches each be allowed to grow up in the first grape baring year (the third year).
The parallel I like from this is that The True Vine had 6 branches (12 disciples) from each arm that were selected by The True Husbandman. In His prayer, just days before his crucifixion, Jesus said, John 17:12, “…those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.”
This proves further that Jesus even depended on His Father to select the disciples (1st growth branches) for Him to nurture and develop. We will continue with more about the branches in future studies.
Live Link*1 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8dtl2TtiSD0 Jabuticaba – The Brazilian Grape Tree (It Grows Fruits & Flowers Directly on The Trunk)
Live Link *2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qRitu20KipM Training Grape Vines -Training A Young Lateral To Reach The Wire.pt1