Tag Archives: True Vine

Taken From F.B. Meyer’s “True Vine”

     We live in a world that has trouble with defining “Love” and knowing whether it is genuine or not.  True love for man, woman, child, neighbor, friend, or enemy lies in the foundation of obedience.  In our obedience to God we show the true depth of our ability to love.  Mark 12:30-31 says “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.   And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.  There is none other commandment greater than these.”   John 15:13 says, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”  True love has always been, and will always be, found in the expression of our obedience to the laws of God, and our willingness to sacrifice on the behalf of others.  F.B. Meyer puts it this way: 

October 27

” Ye Are My Friends, if Ye Do the Things Which I Command You ”

Joh_15:14

Our Lord has said what He gave as proof of His friendship: He gave His life for us. He now tells us what our part is to be—to do the things which He commands. He gave His life to secure a place for His love in our hearts to rule us; the response His love calls us to, and empowers us for, is that we do what He commands us. As we know the dying love, we shall joyfully obey its commands. As we obey the commands, we shall know the love more fully. Christ had already said: “If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love.” He counts it needful to repeat the truth again: the one proof of our faith in His love, the one way to abide in it, the one mark of being true branches is—to do the things which He commands us. He began with absolute surrender of His life for us. He can ask nothing less from us. This alone is a life in His friendship.

This truth, of the imperative necessity of obedience, doing all that Christ commands us, has not the place in our Christian teaching and living that Christ meant it to have. We have given a far higher place to privilege than to duty. We have not considered implicit obedience as a condition of true discipleship. The secret thought that it is impossible to do the things He commands us, and that therefore it cannot be expected of us, and a subtle and unconscious feeling that sinning is a necessity have frequently robbed both precepts and promises of their power. The whole relation to Christ has become clouded and lowered, the waiting on His teaching, the power to hear and obey His voice, and through obedience to enjoy His love and friendship, have been enfeebled by the terrible mistake. Do let us try to return to the true position, take Christ’s words as most literally true, and make nothing less the law of our life: “Ye are my friends, if ye do the things that I command you.” Surely our Lord asks nothing less than that we heartily and truthfully say: “Yea, Lord, what Thou dost command, that will I do.”

These commands are to be done as a proof of friendship. The power to do them rests entirely in the personal relationship to Jesus. For a friend I could do what I would not for another. The friendship of Jesus is so heavenly and wonderful, it comes to us so as the power of a divine love entering in and taking possession, the unbroken fellowship with Himself is so essential to it, that it implies and imparts a joy and a love which make the obedience a delight. The liberty to claim the friendship of Jesus, the power to enjoy it, the grace to prove it in all its blessedness—all come as we do the things He commands us.

Is not the one thing needful for us that we ask our Lord to reveal Himself to us in the dying love in which He proved Himself our friend, and then listen as He says to us: “Ye are My friends.” As we see what our Friend has done for us, and what as unspeakable blessedness it is to have Him call us friends, the doing His commands will become the natural fruit of our life in his love. We shall not fear to say: “Yea, Lord, we are Thy friends, and do what Thou dost command us.”

If ye do

. Yes, it is in doing that we are blessed, that we abide in His love, that we enjoy His friendship. “If ye do what I command you!” O my Lord, let Thy holy friendship lead me into the love of all Thy commands, and let the doing of Thy commands lead me ever deeper into Thy friendship.

Taken from F.B. Meyer’s “True Vine.”

     You know I’m very blessed.  I seldom have bad days.  I think the reason I have so many good days is because I always try to spend them with my Lord.  You know when you’re loved, and know it, it’s very easy to love others.  May you find this devotion as much of a blessing as I have . . . .    

October 25

 

” This is My Commandment, That Ye Love One Another, Even as I Have Loved You ”

Joh_15:12

 

This is the second time our Lord uses the expression—Even as I. The first time it was of His relation to the Father, keeping His commandments, and abiding in His love. Even so we are to keep Christ’s commandments, and abide in His love. The second time He speaks of His relation to us as the rule of our love to our brethren: “Love one another, as I have loved you.” In each case His disposition and conduct is to be the law for ours. It is again the truth we have more than once insisted on—perfect likeness between the Vine and the branch.

Even as I

—But is it not a vain thing to imagine that we can keep His commandments, and love the brethren, even as He kept His Father’s, and as He loved us? And must not the attempt end in failure and discouragement? Undoubtedly, if we seek to carry out the injunction in our strength, or without a full apprehension of the truth of the Vine and its branches. But if we understand that the “even as I” is just the one great lesson of the parable, the one continual language of the Vine to the branch, we shall see that it is not the question of what we feel able to accomplish, but of what Christ is able to work in us. These high and holy commands—”Obey, even as I! Love, even as I”—are just meant to bring us to the consciousness of our impotence, and through that to waken us to the need and the beauty and the sufficiency of what is provided for us in the Vine. We shall begin to hear the Vine speaking every moment to the branch: “Even as I. Even as I: My life is your life; and have a share in all My fullness; the Spirit in you, and the fruit that comes from you, is all just the same as in Me. Be not afraid, but let your faith grasp each “Even as I” as the divine assurance that because I live in you, you may and can live like Me.”

But why, if this really be the meaning of the parable, if this really be the life a branch may live,who do so few realize it? Because they do not know the heavenly mystery of the Vine. They know much of the parable and its beautiful lessons. But the hidden spiritual mystery of the Vine in His divine omnipotence and nearness, bearing and supplying them all the day—this they do not know, because they have not waited on God’s Spirit to reveal it to them.

Love one another, even as I have loved you

—”Ye, even as I.” How are we to begin if we are really to learn the mystery? With the confession that we need to be brought to an entirely new mode of life, because we have never yet known Christ as the Vine in the completeness of His quickening and transforming power. With the surrender to be cleansed from all that is of self, and detached from all that is in the world, to live only and wholly as Christ lived for the glory of the Father. And then with the faith that this “even as I” is in very deed what Christ is ready to make true, the very life the Vine will maintain in the branch wholly dependent upon Him.

Even as I

. Ever again it is, my blessed Lord, as the Vine, so the branch—one life, one spirit, one obedience, one joy, one love.

Lord Jesus, in the faith that Thou art my Vine, and that I am Thy branch, I accept Thy command as a promise, and take Thy “even as I” as the simple revelation of what Thou dost work in me. Yea, Lord, as Thou hast loved, I will love.