Read John 15:1-27.
Devotion by: Kara Kennedy
True Vine Discourse
One of my favorite discoveries of God is the way He has woven together the entirety of Scriptures with brilliant consistency, much in the same way He has knit each of us together in the womb with stunning intricacy. His genius as a Creator and an Artist abound in what He has written in His word and within each of us, and a lifetime of study would scarcely reveal the treasures entwined in the passage before us.
In one of His grandest pictures, He weaves together the purpose of life, the source of joy, the communion of God and man, the nature of authentic relationship, the beauty of discipline and the existence of the Trinity, all within His illustration of the grapevine which itself connects to centuries of Scriptures before it. In regrettable brevity, I unearth this one connection between joy and righteousness, and pray it is a catalyst for your own discoveries:
Psalm 45:7 speaks of Jesus, who was “anointed with the oil of joy because He loved righteousness and hated wickedness.”
Out of immeasurable grace, He speaks to us in this passage as His friends and disciples, saying He wants to share His joy with us in such abundance that we are filled and overflowing (v.11), which is only possible when we obey His command to love (v.5, 10).
Only through His creative, sustaining and life-giving power can we obey Him, and such obedience yields lasting fruit. The fruit that a grapevine produces is, of course, grapes. But grapes are only the beginning. They are grown with a purpose, to make wine, which symbolizes joy for both God and man (Judges 9:13).
Therefore, righteousness ultimately yields joy. But neither righteousness nor joy are attainable on our own; they are His alone. This makes His invitation to live in intimate and sustained connection with Him, the True Vine, all the more beautiful. It is an invitation to share in both His righteousness and His resulting joy. It is an invitation to fall under His anointing, to enjoy the fruit of His Vine, to flourish in His unmerited grace.