You Can Provide Clean Water to Persecuted Christians

John 15

Jesus Is the Vine--Followers Are Branches

1 "1I am the true vine, and My Father is the 2vinedresser.
2 "Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit.
3 "3You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.
4 "4Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot * bear fruit of itself unless * it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless * you abide in Me.
5 "I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he 5bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing *.
6 "If anyone does not abide in Me, he is 6thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned.
7 "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, 7ask whatever * you wish, and it will be done for you.
8 "My 8Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so 9prove to be My disciples.
9 "Just as 10the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love.
10 "11If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as 12I have kept My Father's commandments and abide in His love.
11 "13These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your 14joy may be made full.

Disciples' Relation to Each Other

12 "This is 15My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you.
13 "16Greater love has no one than this, that one 17lay down his life for his friends.
14 "You are My 18friends if 19you do what I command you.
15 "No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for 20all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.
16 "21You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and 22bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that 23whatever * * you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.
17 "This 24I command you, that you love one another.

Disciples' Relation to the World

18 "25If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you.
19 "If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but 26I chose you out of the world, 27because of this * the world hates you.
20 "Remember the word that I said to you, '28A slave is not greater than his master.' If they persecuted Me, 29they will also persecute you; if they 30kept My word, they will keep yours also.
21 "But all these things they will do to you 31for My name's sake, 32because they do not know the One who sent Me.
22 "33If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin.
23 "He who hates Me hates My Father also.
24 "34If I had not done among them 35the works which no one else did, they would not have sin; but now they have both seen and hated Me and My Father as well.
25 "But they have done this to fulfill the word that is written in their 36Law, '37THEY HATED ME WITHOUT A CAUSE.'
26 "When the 38Helper comes, 39whom I will send to you from the Father, that is 40the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, 41He will testify about Me,
27 and 42you will testify also, because you have been with Me 43from the beginning.

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John 15 Commentary

Chapter 15

Christ the true Vine. (1-8) His love to his disciples. (9-17) foretold. (18-25) The Comforter promised. (26,27)

Verses 1-8 Jesus Christ is the Vine, the true Vine. The union of the human and Divine natures, and the fulness of the Spirit that is in him, resemble the root of the vine made fruitful by the moisture from a rich soil. Believers are branches of this Vine. The root is unseen, and our life is hid with Christ; the root bears the tree, diffuses sap to it, and in Christ are all supports and supplies. The branches of the vine are many, yet, meeting in the root, are all but one vine; thus all true Christians, though in place and opinion distant from each other, meet in Christ. Believers, like the branches of the vine, are weak, and unable to stand but as they are borne up. The Father is the Husbandman. Never was any husbandman so wise, so watchful, about his vineyard, as God is about his church, which therefore must prosper. We must be fruitful. From a vine we look for grapes, and from a Christian we look for a Christian temper, disposition, and life. We must honour God, and do good; this is bearing fruit. The unfruitful are taken away. And even fruitful branches need pruning; for the best have notions, passions, and humours, that require to be taken away, which Christ has promised to forward the sanctification of believers, they will be thankful, for them. The word of Christ is spoken to all believers; and there is a cleansing virtue in that word, as it works grace, and works out corruption. And the more fruit we bring forth, the more we abound in what is good, the more our Lord is glorified. In order to fruitfulness, we must abide in Christ, must have union with him by faith. It is the great concern of all Christ's disciples, constantly to keep up dependence upon Christ, and communion with him. True Christians find by experience, that any interruption in the exercise of their faith, causes holy affections to decline, their corruptions to revive, and their comforts to droop. Those who abide not in Christ, though they may flourish for awhile in outward profession, yet come to nothing. The fire is the fittest place for withered branches; they are good for nothing else. Let us seek to live more simply on the fulness of Christ, and to grow more fruitful in every good word and work, so may our joy in Him and in his salvation be full.

Verses 9-17 Those whom God loves as a Father, may despise the hatred of all the world. As the Father loved Christ, who was most worthy, so he loved his disciples, who were unworthy. All that love the Saviour should continue in their love to him, and take all occasions to show it. The joy of the hypocrite is but for a moment, but the joy of those who abide in Christ's love is a continual feast. They are to show their love to him by keeping his commandments. If the same power that first shed abroad the love of Christ's in our hearts, did not keep us in that love, we should not long abide in it. Christ's love to us should direct us to love each other. He speaks as about to give many things in charge, yet names this only; it includes many duties.

Verses 18-25 How little do many persons think, that in opposing the doctrine of Christ as our Prophet, Priest, and King, they prove themselves ignorant of the one living and true God, whom they profess to worship! The name into which Christ's disciples were baptized, is that which they will live and die by. It is a comfort to the greatest sufferers, if they suffer for Christ's name's sake. The world's ignorance is the true cause of its hatred to the disciples of Jesus. The clearer and fuller the discoveries of the grace and truth of Christ, the greater is our sin if we do not love him and believe in him.

26,27. The blessed Spirit will maintain the cause of Christ in the world, notwithstanding the opposition it meets with. Believers taught and encouraged by his influences, would bear testimony to Christ and his salvation.

Cross References 43

  • 1. Psalms 80:8f; Isaiah 5:1f; Ezekiel 19:10f; Matthew 21:33f
  • 2. Matthew 15:13; Romans 11:17; 1 Corinthians 3:9
  • 3. John 13:10; John 17:17; Ephesians 5:26
  • 4. John 6:56; John 15:4-7; 1 John 2:6
  • 5. John 15:16
  • 6. John 15:2
  • 7. Matthew 7:7; John 15:16
  • 8. Matthew 5:16
  • 9. John 8:31
  • 10. John 3:35; John 17:23, 24, 26
  • 11. John 14:15
  • 12. John 8:29
  • 13. John 17:13
  • 14. John 3:29
  • 15. John 13:34; John 15:17; 1 John 3:23; 2 John 5
  • 16. Romans 5:7
  • 17. John 10:11
  • 18. Luke 12:4
  • 19. Matthew 12:50
  • 20. John 8:26; John 16:12
  • 21. John 6:70; John 13:18; John 15:19
  • 22. John 15:5
  • 23. John 14:13; John 15:7; John 16:23
  • 24. John 15:12
  • 25. John 7:7; 1 John 3:13
  • 26. John 15:16
  • 27. Matthew 10:22; Matthew 24:9; John 17:14
  • 28. Matthew 10:24; John 13:16
  • 29. 1 Corinthians 4:12; 2 Corinthians 4:9; 2 Timothy 3:12
  • 30. John 8:51
  • 31. Matthew 10:22; Matthew 24:9; Mark 13:13; Luke 21:12, 17; Acts 4:17; Acts 5:41; Acts 9:14; Acts 26:9; 1 Peter 4:14; Revelation 2:3
  • 32. John 8:19, 55; John 16:3; John 17:25; Acts 3:17; 1 John 3:1
  • 33. John 9:41; John 15:24
  • 34. John 9:41; John 15:21
  • 35. John 5:36; John 10:37
  • 36. John 10:34
  • 37. Psalms 35:19; Psalms 69:4
  • 38. John 14:16
  • 39. John 14:26
  • 40. John 14:17
  • 41. 1 John 5:7
  • 42. Luke 24:48; John 19:35; John 21:24; 1 John 1:2; 1 John 4:14
  • 43. Luke 1:2

Footnotes 9

  • [a]. Lit "cleans;" used to describe pruning
  • [b]. I.e. pruned like a branch
  • [c]. Lit "from"
  • [d]. Or "become My disciples"
  • [e]. Or (imperative) "know that"
  • [f]. I.e. guilt
  • [g]. I.e. guilt
  • [h]. Gr "Paracletos", one called alongside to help; or "Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor"
  • [i]. Or (imperative) "and bear witness"

John 15 Commentaries

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