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March 19, 2021 8:00 am
We all could use some encouragement and will find it together today in the Bible to a screeching of Dr. Don Wilton in this message to the book of John. That's right, we read of John chapter 15 about this message direct understanding of the church as we study the word know that we are here for you 24 hours a day at 866899 866-899-WORD 9673 John chapter 3. One of the most intriguing of all of the passages in all of Scripture. One of the most intriguing statements that the Lord Jesus Christ made to his disciples indeed. I'm sure that you would agree with me that the disciples had now become the embryonic church and right ear.
At this juncture, Jesus was saying something to them as it is applied to each one of us and somehow subject today I direct understanding of the church now for the sake of time this morning. I'm only going to read to you the first seven verses a big upon the verse first eight verses money going to read the first eight verses, but I am going to be preaching from almost the entire chapter so that he would follow along with me in God's word. John chapter 15 Jesus said I am the true vine, and my father is the gardener or the husbandman. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every Bronx that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.
You already clean because of the word I have spoken to you reminding me and I will reminding you know Bronx can bear fruit by itself, it must remain in the vine, neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me, I am the vine and you all the Bronson's. If a man remains in me and I am him, he will bear much fruit, but apart from me you can do nothing.
If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a Bronx that is thrown away and withers. Such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burn.
If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. This is to my father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing your sills to be my disciples by the Lord, right his word upon our hearts. I maybe say just a few minutes with you some thoughts with regard to what Jesus was trying to do. Yet, in John chapter 50, so I want you to bear with me because I'm going to be talking about some very important issues related to each one of us in God's church. This is a staggering proposal, a portion of Scripture, my beloved friends what Jesus says here in John 15 is applicable to us and would require us to spend literally months upon months of study to try and come to an understanding what Jesus was saying, why would Jesus talk about the vine and the branches well.
There are three prominent viewpoints with regard to the reasoning behind that I'm going to give them to you very quickly. First of all, some people believe Jesus used this imagery because of the burnings that took place in the Kidron Valley right outside of Jerusalem. Historians tell us that you could literally see the fires taking place all over the place as the seven bronzes that had been pruned from the blinds were burned in the Kidron Valley. That's a very plausible sort. The second most prominent salt is that Jesus used this language because of the golden vines that embellish the temple courts.
Again, I think that that has a high level of plausibility to it because everybody could see these these vines.
These golden vines that embellish the courts they were there for public consumption, but I believe that it is the third theory that I believe to be the most accurate personally is your pasta many people, including myself, believe that Jesus talked about the vine as one of the three trees in Scripture that came to symbolize the nation of Israel that you want to go back and do your homework.
You can read about this, not only in Psalm 80, but also in Isaiah chapter 5 verses one through seven. The prophet and the psalmist very clearly talk about Israel as the vine and so we come up to this I am saying of the Lord Jesus Christ. Why did Jesus say in verse five I am the vine and you are the branches. Well, consider Israel for just about Israel went into bondage did they not they were brought out of bondage.
They were led through the cyanide visit, they were delivered to the promised land.
What did God Jehovah do for Israel. He repeatedly he repeatedly hedged her about and protected her with a series of divinely appointed leaders and if you go back into the Old Testament with me if we had time this morning and you began to read about how these leaders were treated you going to discover that God repeatedly came to look for a return on his investment and get what happened. They murdered some of those leaders, they beat some of them that abused others by disobeying the divinely appointed leaders of God, and now here in the New Testament at the embryonic stage of the New Testament church. God is sending his only son, and what are they doing to him. Israel is about to kick him out. Israel is about the music. Israel is about to execute the son of the living God, keep your finger in John chapter 15 and turn back with me to Matthew chapter 21 quickly. Do that.
So to Matthew chapter 21 I believe that yet Jesus talks about this very thing.
Matthew 21. I'm going to read to you from verse 33.
A very provocative parable and extremely provocative parable.
Parable for the church to the but directly related to Israel's favored nation status with God and we going to read what happens when someone who is under the favor of God teaches that relationship and becomes a severed wrong if you please listen. Matthew 21 verse 33. Listen to another parable, there was a landowner Dupont to the vineyard. He put up a wall around it.
He dug a winepress in it, and a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and he went away on a journey. Think of this road when the harvest time approached, he safety service to the tenants to collect these fruit attainments sees these servants.
They beat one. They killed another advice from the third then he sent other servants to them more than the first time and the tenants treated them the same way, lost of all heritage you ready for this. There is folks going to find ourselves right at the outset of the gospel story lost the ball verse 37 he saved his son to the they will respect my son. He said, but when the team and saw the sun they said to each other. This is the air, let's kill him and take his inheritance so they took him and they threw him out of the vineyard and they killed him and what was the result. Look at verse 43 verse 43 is a very key passage in trying to understand John chapter 15 therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and will be given to laypeople who will produce its fruit.go back to John chapter 15, that's exactly what Israel had done. That is exactly what Israel was doing.
They were rejecting the son of the living God.
They were three consequences that the Bible teaches us about number one, there was the unmitigated visitation of the anger of God upon God's chosen people, number two, there was the removal of God's favored nation status from Israel and number three there was the approval of God transferred and placed on another people, the Gentiles, and so we have here the institution of the New Testament church. Therefore it seems to me, my beloved friends.
In this age, God's purpose centers in the Lord Jesus Christ and in his church.
In the Old Testament, the vine symbolized Israel corporately in the New Testament the vine symbolizes the Lord Jesus Christ and his church corporately. Therefore, God has a new instrument and a mutilation for carrying out these purpose, the Lord Jesus Christ and his church. Now how does this work out for us to go. I'm going to submit to you today that amongst many other things that we need to contemplate my friend. Is that what Jesus is teaching at this point is that any local gathering is the average of its members. What we need to understand about the understanding of the church is that the corporate, spiritual, and spiritual life of the church is a direct reflection of the spirituality over carnality of its people, and in particular of its leaders. That's what Jesus was trying to teach so I question this morning is how then does the husbandman God relate to his church. Why would Jesus say this after all the disciples were the embryonic church. Jesus was about to be crucified. Was he not and Hill was the markings or the beginnings of the church as we know it today as instituted by the Lord Jesus Christ.
What was that God was trying to say. How does the husbandman relate to the New Testament church. While I want to share with you for things that God does in relation to his church.
Number one he cops all the useless. He cops all the useless value can look with me at verse two of chapter 15 then again at verse six. Listen to what the Bible says Jesus is God.
Every branch in me that bears no fruit.
Look at verse six rather staggering statement. If anyone does not remain in me is like a Bronx that is thrown away and withers. Such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burn the friends I want to show you something very interesting gun. Some of you guy disciple preacher I'm not an English teacher, you don't have to be there is a very subtle shift in the grammatical construction here in John chapter 15 and particularly from verse six. Prior to this.
Jesus refers in the first and second personal pronouns.
He talks about.
I leave and he but caring verse six. All the sudden he changes into the third person he talks about you.
He talks about he talks about them and he talks about the what Jesus perhaps was trying to teach his disciples is that when you and I belong to him and we all connected to him that we come into a personal relationship with him and that the blood flows directly from him.
He was talking perhaps about Judas who loves Judas Judas was a severed and brought Judas was a seven. What about Judas. I think we can all agree a couple of things about Judas Judas had an attachment to the course, but he didn't have an attachment to the Christ. Judas was the one man who replayed demised someone who had an attachment to a program, but he certainly had no attachment to the person behind the program. Judas there is no doubt my claim he had an attachment to the momentum of the action, but he had no attachment whatsoever to the man behind the momentum and the action. And so what happened when the calls collapse. He sold out to the Christ because he was never connected to the Christ. What a tragedy. Beloved friends.
We read about it in Revelation chapter 3 in verse 16 with the church at Laodicea with God's word says I will spew you all my mouth to the church at Ephesus in Revelation chapter 2 and verses four and five. God's word says repent. All I will come quickly, and I will remove thy candlestick out of his place.
What was Jesus trying to teach the disciples perhaps three things at this point he is saying. First of all that the Lord Jesus Christ has no use for useless churches and no use for useless people. Number two. He was saying that despite all of their activity and the zeal they had become fruitless branches and number three. He was sorry that their lack of virtuality was a direct reflection of the carnality and the worldliness, not any of its people, but of those who led them to see my beloved friends.
It seems remarkably significant.
During John chapter 15 that we must conclude that what Jesus was saying is first the bull that the husbandman relates to his church and that he will caulk all those who are unproductive, but I'm going to say to you, my beloved friends that Jesus was telling his church that if you are a severed brownish you will be cut.
You will be comfortable but there's a second thing that God does for his church. He not any counsel for useless buddy cultivates the committed, he cultivates the commitment now.
I like this one because there are so many thousands of people here in Spartanburg also deeply committed to the Lord Jesus Christ. Look at verse two, he says a dry thin verse chapter 15 and verse two he cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit. Garrett is while on the other hand, every bronze that does bear fruit he prunes. Why, in order that it will become one more fruitful. I like adventure. They just simply saying the listen. I'm going to cultivate the committed what Jesus was saying please disciples is that when you trust Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.
You are not set free, unto a license within yourself. You are safe.
Three unto a life of committed discipleship and because you belong to me.
I'm going to do whatever it takes to make you everything that I know that you can be because of who I am in and through all of us yesterday can testify to the pruning shears of Almighty God in our own lives and you might say to me today pasta how exactly does God cultivate the committed how does he prune us to what is number one. He prunes are severely with a knife.
Yes sir, number two he prunes us gently with these word that's what the Bible says he prunes are severely with these not the Bible says that the husbandman as those of us who work in these areas in agriculture will tell you is so true that the husbandman takes that surgical knife and by his grace, and in his wisdom he slips share any thoughts they any savers. This offer any changes that so that we find ourselves in a better position stronger than ever before to be the recipients of the on flowing Christ that is given to us by God in Christ Jesus, and the consequence of that is that the fruit we bear is far tastier formal delicious and formal meaningful buddy modern he prunes us severely with my the cultivates as gently by means of his word tells us in verse three you already, even you are already clean because of the word which I have spoken unto you. Please forgive the interruption will be back with the rest of today's message a direct understanding of the church with Dr. Don Wilton but he insisted I remind you we are here for you to talk with you. Pray with you connect with great resources online at T. E. Dublin online.org that's TW online.org. Also with this phone Chinatown start your cell 866-899-WORD 866-899-WORD 9673 with Dr. connect with you. Now back to the days great teaching with what I would God do for us.
Well it does many things doesn't. But there are three predominant things that the word of God does number one.
It is a source of continual cleansing. God's word is a source of continual cleansing. That's where the word clean comes from authority in the Greek New Testament it means to be made. Thoroughly clean from beginning to end. It means to be set free from any kind of obstruction it means to be set free from any obstacles so that we can flow by the grace and the grace of God in and through the Lord Jesus Christ. It is a source of continual cleansing, but not in the second place, the word of God keeps us from evil yes sir does we are about the business of sharing the word what is the Bible say Bible says hide God's word in your heart.
Why, because the word of God will keep you from evil. The will of God will keep you from evil. It is a source of continual cleansing. It keeps us from evil.
But there's 1/3 byproduct of the word of God. It drives away pretenders the word of God drives away pretenders. In other words, beloved friends by submit to you today that what Jesus was saying was simply this, that people will not stay when these principles he's precepts and he's practices. Other who are black, unless they themselves have a viable connection with the one who is the only one we can be connected to and that is the Lord Jesus Christ. You see the word of God.
My friend drives away pretenders. I'm going to cite you the word of God teaches us many times that they will always be those who cannot tolerate, they cannot put up with.
They cannot accept the unapologetic preaching and teaching of the word of God, and they were scattered to the four winds and I will find anything else to go to other than the subject themselves to the word of God.
God the husbandman. He console for useless heat cultivates the committed, but there's 1/3 thing that he does brush he connects all the components together. I love this one not require he connects all the components together. Jesus was saying you don't worry about that son you know why because God the husbandman connects all the components together.
He is the great connector. What was he trying to teach us.
Maybe what he was saying. My friend is that there is no line and there is no fruit by itself, he tells us in John chapter 15. He was telling us that the fibers of the vine run from its organic connection from the roof to the very fathers brought what he was telling us is that we as a church must be attached. We must be connected to the brought to the vine. Why because severed, we will die. He was telling us that the life-giving slap of the Lord Jesus Christ rises up from the roots and enables the branches to bed.
Green leaves and to bring forth delicious fruit. What an incredible picture God gives to us of these church remaining me. He said remaining me. Why because I'm the one who connects all the components so there are two questions. How does this applied to the life of the individual believer number two how does this apply to the New Testament church and he connects all the components of friend as far as the individual believer's concern. We must remain close to one another. That's what Jesus was saying all is one thing my friend that I have so much pride about and so much brag about, and so much appreciated about the hundred and 50 year history of first Baptist Spartanburg.
It is the spiritual unity among its members. What Jesus was saying my friends is that we must remember connected together. We must, he was saying the life of Christ is the life of the believer and that apart from him. There can be no fruit. You cannot live the class live apart from Christ himself. He was saying that the Mustang moment by moment and situation by situation and issue by issue. We need to be connected into the only one who the connection.
The one and only God the father of our fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob. What was Jesus. I about the church just the same as he was saying about the believer that as the church today. God, the husbandman connects the components together. Why because he is God.
He alone is God what a tremendous privilege.
What a tremendous privilege but I want you to note in the fourth place. My friends, that God cares enough to grant us.
He's blessed. Number one God cuts off the useless number two God cultivates the committed number three God can let all the components together, number four, God cares so much he wants to us is manifold blessed. That's what John 15 is all about the manifold blessings of God. Jesus simply saying to his disciples listen you abide in me, and I use this is the blessings that I'm going to give to you that there are so many blessings we never get through them. But there are three that he talks about Roger in this passage number one, we will receive from God. Verse seven in verse 16 we will receive from God. What a blessing number two we will bear fruit that remain. We will bear fruit that remains. Look at verse 16 fruit that lost not stuff that's kind of fallen rock on the ground but there's 1/3 manifold blessing because God cares for us so much that simply this, that we will be called the friends of God is indeed a great blessing as we come to know God, not just know about him, but knowing personally.
You've heard great teaching from Dr. Wilton great preaching from doctoral to the now as he steps into the studio. I pray you just let him share his heart. Are you ready to give your heart and life to the Lord Jesus Christ. Why don't you pray this prayer with me right now. Dear God, I know that on the center and I know that Jesus died for me on the cross today, I repent of my sin and by faith I receive you into my heart. In Jesus name, my friend.
I welcome you today into the family of God. This is exciting new welcome to the family of God are welcome back, I'm convinced somebody just prayed along with Dr. Wilton for some you're ready to call us at 866-899-WORD and have a conversation about giving your life to Jesus. Our phone number again is 866-899-9673, and we stand ready right now it's my thing anytime day or night to talk with you. Pray with you and watch God work to encourage the power of his word and we also connect online at our website, tewonline.org, G. And while you're there, you will discover a great new book coming from Dr. Don Wilton. Here the dictates of our new website. You can reserve a copy of Dr. Wilton's brand-new book Saturdays with Billy in days with the daily time shares heartwarming stories.
Mr. Graham just delete words changed on life. They can change our lives today to a knee and leaned on God's grace into returning discover their powerful friends online.know our great week teaching… Often reminds us, make sure you're in church this week and sometimes that can only be virtually at this particular time of year, but no would also love to have you worship with us virtually with our television ministry. You can find the details on our website at tewonline.org G that's tewonline.org