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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Sunday, March 22, 2015
The grapevine is a prolific plant; a single vine bears many grapes. In the Old Testament, grapes symbolized Israel’s fruitfulness in doing God’s work on earth (Isaiah 5:1-71). In the Passover meal, the fruit of the vine symbolized God’s goodness to his people.
When a vine produces “much fruit,” God is glorified, for daily he sent the sunshine and rain to make the crops grow, and constantly he nurtured each tiny plant and prepared it to blossom. What a moment of glory for the Lord of the harvest when the harvest is brought into the barns, mature and ready for use! He made it all happen! This farming analogy shows how God is glorified when people come into a right relationship with him and begin to “produce much fruit” in their lives. (NLT)
John 15:1-9 – [Jesus said] “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more. You have already been pruned for greater fruitfulness by the message I have given you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful apart from me.
“Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. Anyone who parts from me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned. But if you stay joined to me and my words remain in you, you may ask any request you like, and it will be granted! My true disciples produce much fruit this brings great glory to my Father.
“I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love.”
To read the stories in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/
For more Helpful Inspirational Material:
OPPRESSED, OPPRESSION: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/oppressed-oppression/
GOOD, GOODNESS: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/good-goodness/
GUILT, GUILTY: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/guilt-guilty/
SPIRITUAL GROWTH: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/spiritual-growth/
ATTITUDE, ATTITUDES: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/attitude-attitudes/
1 The lesson of the song of the vineyard shows that God’s chosen nation was to bear fruit—to carry out his work, to uphold justice. It did bear fruit, but the fruit was bad. This passage uses plays on words: the Hebrew words for justice and bloodshed sound very much alike, as do those for righteousness and oppression. Jesus said, “The way to identify a tree or a person is by the kind of fruit that is produced.” Have you examined your own “fruit” lately? Is it good or bad—useful or wild? (NLT)
Isaiah 5:1-7 – Now I will sing a song for the one I love about his vineyard: My beloved has a vineyard on a rich and fertile hill. He plowed the land, cleared its stones, and planted it with choice vines. In the middle he built a watchtower and carved a winepress in the nearby rocks. Then he waited for a harvest of sweet grapes, but the grapes that grew were wild and sour. “Now, you people of Jerusalem and Judah, you have heard the case; you be the judges. What more could I have done to cultivate a rich harvest? Why did my vineyard give me wild grapes when I expected sweet ones? Now this is what I am going to do to my vineyard: I will tear down its fences and let it be destroyed. I will break down its walls and let the animals trample it. I will make it a wild place. I will not prune the vines or hoe the ground. I will let it be overgrown with briers and thorns. I will command the clouds to drop no more rain on it.”
This is the story of the Lord’s people. They are the vineyard of the Lord Almighty. Israel and Judah are his pleasant garden. He expected them to yield a crop of justice, but instead he found bloodshed. He expected to find righteousness, but instead he heard cries of oppression.
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