In today’s gospel passage, Jesus tells his disciples that he is the true vine. Why is it that Jesus uses this allegoric imagery?
Jesus said to his disciples:
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower.
He takes away every branch in me that does not bear fruit,
and everyone that does he prunes so that it bears more fruit.
You are already pruned because of the word that I spoke to you.
Remain in me, as I remain in you.
Just as a branch cannot bear fruit on its own
unless it remains on the vine,
so neither can you unless you remain in me.
I am the vine, you are the branches.
Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit,
because without me you can do nothing.
Anyone who does not remain in me
will be thrown out like a branch and wither;
people will gather them and throw them into a fire
and they will be burned.
If you remain in me and my words remain in you,
ask for whatever you want and it will be done for you.
By this is my Father glorified,
that you bear much fruit and become my disciples.”
The image of the vine and branches reminds us that the fruits of our faith only appear when we enter into an intimate relationship with Jesus. Everything that we do as Christians is derivative of the love of the Son of God. Without the vine, the branches whither.
Do we love Christ enough to be his branches, reaching out to the world in his love?