“If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. (8) Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples” (John 15:7-8)
John 15 teaches that “purging” is the avenue to eliminate non-bearing branches and to trim back the productive branches, which initiates new growth to bear fruit, more fruit, and much fruit. This is used figuratively of God’s purging of His children to increase their fruit production.
Christ uses His Word to clean the branches and to cause them to produce more fruit (verse 3); also to reveal that the child of God’s responsibility is in their position of abiding (or dwelling in His House, in full submission and obedience) and of Christ abiding in them (Galatians 2:20). If you abide in this position, then works of faith will follow.
Christ said in John 15:4, you must abide in Me and I in you. (That is, you must be born again (Christ in you); and you must be committed to dwell in the confines of His Body (His House, the Church) and submit to the order thereof.) When this happens, there are five things that will occur:
- Verse 4, “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.” Here the child of God finds there is no life outside of Him. There will be no fruit unless you are in Him; which proves that the child of God only bears the fruit, he does not produce it.
- Verse 5, “I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.” You cannot attain unto the level of “bringeth forth much fruit” unless you abide in Christ and receive “purging.”
- Verse 5c, “…for without me ye can do nothing.” Here the child of God learns he must have Christ’s life in him to bear any fruit.
- Verse 6, “If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.” Here is the negative side; if you don’t abide in Christ and Christ in you, you will be judged in this life and removed from the tree (1 John 5:16; Hebrews 10:29).
- Verse 7a, “If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you…” Here are the promises to the tree:
- Verse 7b, “…ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.” Answered Prayer; all according to His will (1 John 5:14). When you abide in Him and Him in you, and walk in the Spirit and not in the flesh; then you will know His Will and know what to pray for.
- Verse 8a, “Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit…” Because this is the purpose of God for His born again ones in Christ Jesus. That is to bear “much fruit.” For you cannot do this unless you are in Christ and Christ in you.
- Verse 8b, “… so shall ye be my disciples.” As you carry out your duties as servants and friends of Jesus Christ, you have proof that you are His disciples (or His followers). A disciple is one who has completely sold his body, soul, and spirit to his Leader, to his Captain, to his Master; and submits and obeys his Master’s every command; making his Master first above all others and all things (Luke 14:26-33).