Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Christian Outdoor Object Lesson 34: The Vine



Key Verse

“I am the vine. You are the branches. He who remains in me, and I in him, the same bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”
John 15:5 WEB

Lesson

Note: When using a vine or climber as an object for this lesson, be sure it is not poison ivy or some other poisonous plant before letting participants touch it!

Have you ever stopped to look closely at a vine? You may have heard them called a climber or creeper plant. One of the most famous teachings of Jesus is that of the True Vine. Jesus said I am the vine and you are the branches. Why did he make this comparison? Vines are usually pretty small. Why not compare himself and his church to a mighty tree? Jesus wanted his followers to realize their need and dependence on him.

Vines have several characteristics that jesus wanted to emphasize to his followers. The branches of a vine cannot support themselves. They are too weak on their own to support their weight.1 This is why they must hold on to something like a large rock, tree, or wall. Vines must wrap around something stronger than themselves in order to absorb sunlight. Jesus wanted his followers to understand that as fallen, sinful humans, we are not like the branches of a mighty tree that can stand on their own. We are like those of a vine that must cling to something stronger than ourselves.

Vines share another characteristic with Jesus followers. Vines are very resilient. Their branches can bend and twist and withstand a lot of flexing and movement without breaking. Unlike a large tree who’s branches often break in a storm, the branches of a vine can bend and flex to withstand strong winds. They are resilient. When we become followers of Christ and a branch of God’s vine, we gain resilience.

As Christians we know that God has everything under control. We learn patience, and to have trust and faith that God will see us through the storm. The followers of God are compared to a vine throughout the Bible, even in the Old Testament. When we follow Jesus we recognize our dependence on God and we become branches in His vine. We can flexibility and resilience to the difficulties of this life. Only when we remain in Christ will we bear much fruit, because apart from him we can do nothing!

Questions

Have you ever swung from a vine?

Have you ever tried to break a vine? Which was easier, a vine or tree branch?

How do we become branches in God’s vine?

What did Jesus mean when he said you will, “bear much fruit?”

Sources


1 http://www.britannica.com/plant/vine-plant

Written by David F. Garner
Photo Credit: Brennon Garner

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