Jesus: I am the true vine, and My Father is the keeper of the vineyard.  My Father examines every branch in Me and cuts away those who do not bear fruit. He leaves those bearing fruit and carefully prunes them so that they will bear more fruit;  already you are clean because you have heard My voice.  Abide in Me, and I will abide in you. A branch cannot bear fruit if it is disconnected from the vine, and neither will you if you are not connected to Me.  I am the vine, and you are the branches. If you abide in Me and I in you, you will bear great fruit. Without Me, you will accomplish nothing.
John 15:1-5 Voice
One of the most distinctive qualities of Jesus’s teaching is his ability to bring clarity out of complexity. Clarity, which is “the quality of being clear and easy to understand,” is one of the reasons it is so easy to believe Scripture is completely inspired by God. No other book reads with the level of depth and continuity we find in the Bible. Nowhere is this more clear than in the Gospels.
One great example of this clarity can be found in John 15:1-5, where Jesus simplifies Christianity. In this passage, he throws out all the biblical laws, human traditions, as well as our internal guilt-driven do’s and don’ts, then comparing us to a branch, he says our fundamental responsibility is to stay connected to the Vine. There is nothing more we need to know. Do this and live!
- Read John 15-16.
- Read Luke 10:38-42 and relate it to John 15 and the importance of staying in the Vine.
- Read Psalm 73 and identify 3-5 things that might make you leave the Vine.
- Read Psalm 18 and identify 3-5 reasons you should stay connected to the Vine.
Few of us possess the clarity of Jesus, but this does not mean we shouldn’t pursue it. The first step in the process is to simplify our faith, and one of the best ways to do this is to make our primary passion walking with God. When we examine Jesus, one thing is clear, and that is his primary focus and passion was for his relationship with God. His personal clarity about the importance of his relationship with God allowed him to teach his simplicity to others.
*Definitions in “The 12 Days of Jesus” studies are based on the Cambridge Dictionary
- Feature: The 12 Days of Jesus
- Day 1: Conqueror of Darkness
- Day 2: Courage in the Temple
- Day 3: Compassion for the Disabled
- Day 4: Confidence Turns the Tide
- Day 5: Captivating the Crowds
- Day 6: Cagey and Colorful in Conflict
- Day 7: Controversial to the Conventional
- Day 8: Convincing the Confused
- Day 9: Comforting the Cautious
- Day 10: Clarity for the Complicated
- Day 11: Calm for the Chronically Contentious
- Day 12: Concerned about the Cynical