A Part Or Apart?

24 Oct

A post from several years ago about abiding in Christ.

5I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5

There are times when the English language fascinates me. Jesus’ words in this verse bring to mind just one such occasion.

If you are a part of something you belong to it, you are connected and attached. To steal an analogy from the apostle Paul, I have various parts of my body. They work together to form my physical self. They each have various functions and purposes. Each is vital in its own way.

If you are apart from something you no longer belong. That connection and attachment has been terminated. Were I to lose a body part, it would no longer be a part of me. I have been slowly losing my hair for the past ten years. When my hairs fall out I cannot take them and put them back in my head. Now I could set them back on top of my head, could possibly even superglue or duck tape them to my scalp. They would not be living, growing parts of my body anymore. They are apart from me, they are dead.

When I was in high school I was a member of several athletic teams as the student trainer. My senior year I considered playing baseball. My best friend and I both loved and still do love the sport, and we decided to play. Well it came time to join the team and he was unsure whether or not he wanted to play now, so I told him the decision was his. We ended up not playing. The team went on to win the state championship that season. I remember sitting by my friend in the stands before the championship game. We both just looked at each other, not really saying much. We could each tell how much the other wanted to be out on the field though. I cheered loudly as the team won in extra innings in a dramatic fashion. I was excited for them. I was not part of the team though. I was at most of the games during the season and at every game during the playoffs, yet my share of their success was miniscule. I knew and still know many of the players and coaches well. I celebrated the victory with them. Still though, I was apart from the team. I do not own a championship ring. I had no part in their on-the-field accomplishment. I had nothing to do with their winning the state title.

Jesus says here that if you are a part of Him, i.e. remaining in Him, you will bear much fruit. He then continues and declares that apart from Him you can accomplish nothing. Much like, I accomplished nothing for my high school baseball team while sitting in the stands as a fan. Today I commend you to live for Him by being a part of Him, not apart.

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Posted by on October 24, 2012 in Bible, Culture, Life


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