Sunday School Notes 3-1-2015

Topic: United with Christ…

Scripture: John 15:1-8

“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vineyard keeper. Every branch in Me that does not produce fruit He removes, and He prunes every branch that produces fruit so that it will produce more fruit. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in Me, and I in you. Just as a branch is unable to produce fruit by itself unless it remains on the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in Me.

I am the vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in Me and I in him produces much fruit, because you can do nothing without Me. If anyone does not remain in Me, he is thrown aside like a branch and he withers. They gather them, throw them into the fire, and they are burned. If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you want and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this: that you produce much fruit and prove to be My disciples.”

Am I in Christ, or is Christ in me? (vv. 5)

  • What does it mean that Christ is in us?
    • It means that Christ is the source of our life, and of the source of the fruit that we produce.
      • Our fruit is our works, thoughts, actions and beliefs.
      • We rely completely on Christ to produce those within us.
      • Can a tree live and produce fruit without water?
        • If Christ is the vine, the Holy Spirit is the water.
      • What does it mean that we are in Christ?
        • It means that Christ is our authority (Lord) and our savior.
          • Our being in Christ enables us to receive sustenance from Christ.
          • A branch that falls away from the tree will no longer receive water through the tree.

If being in Christ means that Christ is my authority, what does my disobedience do to me?

  • A branch that is disconnected from the tree is without life.
    • Can we lose our salvation? (NO!)
    • When we do not obey Christ, we reject the nutrients of the Spirit and fail to produce healthy fruit.
    • We still belong to God, but we act as practical dead men, instead of those who have been made alive in Christ.
      • Why would we live as dead men when we have been given life?
    • We must remain in Christ. When we remain in Christ, Christ remains in us.
    • Any person who is disobedient to Christ will not recognize His presence because he or she is rejecting Christ as the true vine.

How is God the Father glorified?

  • God is glorified when we produce much fruit and prove to be Christ’s disciples.
    • What is considered fruit?
      • Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, self-control, etc…
      • Fruit is also found in our action and in our belief and in our thoughts.
      • Fruit is stuff that comes out of us that originates with God.
      • Just as water flows into the branches from the base of the tree, so also the Spirit flows into us from Christ and brings about fruit.
    • Where does fruit come from?
      • God is the source, and we are the vessels.

Homework!

It is important that we remain in Christ as we know that Christ remains in us. In western Christianity we place so much emphasis on Christ living in us. How important is it that we also remain in Him?

Read James 4:1-17

How did James view ‘good fruit’?

How important are good works in the Christian life?

What makes a person a friend of the world and an enemy of God?

If knowing the right thing to do and not doing it is a sin, what should we do when we see a need?

Think, journal or blog about what you discover.

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