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Bonus Content: S.W.A.T.
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Stay With Me by Harrison Chastain
One of the most beautiful flowers in nature is the sunflower. They begin as tiny sprouts but grow into big beautiful flowers. The reason they grow so big is they follow the movements of the sun. When the sun rises in the east, the flower points east. It follows the sun throughout the day. When the sun sets in the west, it is pointing west. It does this every day. Hence the name “sunflower.” They always seek the sun, and because of this, they are always growing.
Our topic for this lesson, “Stay With Me”, revolves around this concept. When we are “sonflowers”, we receive something beautiful in return.
The context of our text, John 15:1-6, is the upper room and possibly on the way to Gethsemane. This is the last “I am” statement of Jesus using familiar imagery to help his audience understand his identity. Let’s see who Jesus is in this passage and
what role we play.
Location (John 15:1)
- Vine language was often used figuratively and literally in scripture, but this is the first time Jesus calls himself the “true vine” (15:1).
- Naturally, the grapevine is the source of water, nutrients, and life for the branches and grapes. Jesus is saying he is the only true source of life for his disciples.
- Interestingly, the theme of life in Christ captivated John in his writing (Jn. 1:4, 3:16, 14:6, 20:30-31).
- Jesus Christ is the true vine, and his Father is the vinedresser (farmer) (15:1). As the vinedresser, God is in charge of ensuring the vine and branches have every chance to be successful and bear fruit. Therefore, if true growth does not
occur, it is not God’s fault.
Connection (John 15:4)
- Jesus encourages us as the branches to abide in him (15:4) (UNDERLINE “in
me” and “in you” in John 15:1-11).
- Discussion: How do we as the branches ensure we are abiding in Jesus Christ?
- Be baptized into Jesus Christ (Acts 2:38; 1 Pet. 3:21; 2 Cor. 5:17)
- Allow God to communicate to us through his word (Jas. 1:21)
- Speaking to God in prayer (1 Thess. 5:17). IF we fail to do these regularly, the
consequences are deadly. We will die spiritually (Jn 15:4).
Every Valentine’s Day, I get roses for my wife. I put them in a vase, water them, and put flower food in them. Regardless of what I do, the roses still die because they have been disconnected from the rose bush.
Suppose a man and woman get married and never spend any time together. It would be unrealistic for them to expect a great marriage. The same is true for us as Christians. It would be unrealistic for us to expect a great relationship with Jesus if we spend no time with him.
Action (John 15:5-6)
- A. Jesus Christ is the true vine, God is the vinedresser, and he expects us as his
followers to be true branches (15:5-6).
- B. Contrary to popular belief, it is impossible for us to abide in Christ without obeying his commandments (15:10; Jn. 14;15; Deut. 6:4-5, 5:32-33).
This text reminds us of the importance of knowing our location, branches abiding in Christ. It also reminds us of the connection we should have to Christ as the branches. It also should remind us that abiding in Christ requires action, our obedience to him.