| The Branch - by Andrew Murray|
The believer is called to, and it is his highest blessedness to enter upon, a life of entire and unceasing dependence upon Christ.
[John 15:2] ‘Every Branch in Me that Beareth Not Fruit, He taketh It away.’
Here we have one of the chief words of the parable--branch. A vine needs branches: without branches it can do nothing, can bear no fruit. As important as it is to know about the Vine, and the Husbandman, it is to realize what the branch is. Before we listen to what Christ has to say about it, let us first of all take in what a branch is, and what it teaches us of our life in Christ. A branch is simply a bit of wood, brought forth by the vine for the one purpose of serving it in bearing its fruit. It is of the very same nature as the vine, and has one life and one spirit with it. Just think a moment of the lessons this suggests.
There is the lesson of entire consecration. The branch has but one object for which it exists, one purpose to which it is entirely given up. That is, to bear the fruit the vine wishes to bring forth. And so the believer has but one reason for his being a branch--but one reason for his existence on earth --that the heavenly Vine may through him bring forth His fruit. Happy the soul that knows this, that has consented to it, and that says, I have been redeemed and I live for one thing--as exclusively as the natural branch exists only to bring forth fruit, I too; as exclusively as the heavenly Vine exists to bring forth fruit, I too. As I have been planted by God into Christ, I have wholly given myself to bear the fruit the Vine desires to bring forth.
There is the lesson of perfect conformity. The branch is exactly like the vine in every aspect--the same nature, the same life, the same place, the same work. In all this they are inseparably one. And so the believer needs to know that he is partaker of the divine nature, and has the very nature and spirit of Christ in him, and that his one calling is to yield himself to a perfect conformity to Christ. The branch is a perfect likeness of the vine; the only difference is, the one is great and strong, and the source of strength, the other little and feeble, ever needing and receiving strength. Even so the believer is, and is to be, the perfect likeness of Christ.
There is the lesson of absolute dependence. The vine has its stores of life and sap and strength, not for itself, but for the branches. The branches are and have nothing but what the vine provides and imparts. The believer is called to, and it is his highest blessedness to enter upon, a life of entire and unceasing dependence upon Christ. Day and night, every moment, Christ is to work in him all he needs.
And then the lesson of undoubting confidence. The branch has no cure; the vine provides all; it has but to yield itself and receive. It is the sight of this truth that leads to the blessed rest of faith, the true secret of growth and strength: "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."
What a life would come to us if we only consented to be branches! Dear child of God, learn the lesson. You have but one thing to do: Only be a branch--nothing more, nothing less! Just be a branch; Christ will be the Vine that gives all. And the Husbandman, the mighty God, who made the Vine what it is, will as surely make the branch what it ought to be. Lord Jesus, I pray Thee, reveal to me the heavenly mystery of the branch, in its living union with the Vine, in its claim on all its fullness. And let Thy all-sufficiency, holding and filling Thy branches, lead me to the rest of faith that knows that Thou workest all.
| 2018/7/18 14:27||Profile|
| Re: The Branch - by Andrew Murray|
I was blessed by this devotion, thank you, David
| 2018/7/19 22:10||Profile|
| Re: The Branch - by Andrew Murray|
Greetings in the Lord, David; grace, mercy and the fellowship of His Spirit be with you.
The Lord introduced me to some writings of Andrew Murray, many years back, around the time I was baptized in the Holy Spirit. The main thing this saint's expressions have always conveyed to me is the simple, pure need to continually be filled with the Holy Spirit - which is our source of "flowing nutrients" from the Vine of Christ. The only way this is possible is by actively waiting upon God and humbly submitting - stilling the soul, clearing the mind and allowing Him to work within and communicate. Obedience to His commands, as a true disciple, keeps the flow and direction unhindered.
Among the works of Murray's, is a short, concentrated and unapologetic exhortation, The Full Blessing of Pentecost: The One Thing Needful, which emphasizes the critical importance of being sure we are filled with the Spirit and setting one's mind on Him. By doing so, a Christian branch is connected to the Vine. By staying attentive and obedient, the fruit is grown inside, providing the Spirit filled, trusting branch the transforming nature to be conformed to the image of Christ, Himself.
I pray and hope the type of active fellowship of His Spirit, abiding in the Vine and bearing His spiritual fruits (pure love, inexpressible joy, peace and removal of fear, etc.) is yours in abundance! You would bless me if you may share of specific things you have gained or ways you have grown, spiritually, from this manner. I'd be happy to dialogue, encourage and fellowship, as much as the Lord allows and you are willing, regarding our mutual faith.
All glory and praise to our life giving Vine, our Lord God; amen and amen!
| 2018/9/26 13:15|
| Re: The Branch - by Andrew Murray|
"It is easy to see what a mighty influence it must exert on the believer who seeks to abide in Christ. What a sure standing-ground it gives him, as he rests his right to Christ and all His fullness on nothing less than the Father's own purpose and work! We have thought of Christ as the Vine, and the believer as the branch; let us not forget that other precious word, 'My Father is the Husbandman.' The Savior said, 'Every plant which my Heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up;' but every branch grafted by Him in the True Vine, shall never be plucked out of His hand. As it was the Father to whom Christ owed all He was, and in whom He had all His strength and His life as the Vine, so to the Father the believer owes his place and his security in Christ. The same love and delight with which the Father watched over the beloved Son Himself, watches over every member of His body, every one who is in Christ Jesus.
What confident trust this faith inspires, -- not only as to the being kept in safety to the end, but specially as to the being able to fulfill in every point the object for which I have been united to Christ. The branch is as much in the charge and keeping of the husbandman as the vine; his honor as much concerned in the well-being and growth of the branch as of the vine. The God who chose Christ to be Vine fitted Him thoroughly for the work He had as Vine to perform. The God who has chosen me and planted me in Christ, has thereby engaged to secure, if I will but let Him, by yielding myself to Him, that I in every way be worthy of Jesus Christ. Oh that I did but fully realize this! What confidence and urgency it would give to my prayer to the God and Father of Jesus Christ! How it would quicken the sense of dependence, and make me see that praying without ceasing is indeed the one need of my life, -- an unceasing waiting, moment by moment, on the God who hath united me to Christ, to perfect His own Divine work, to work in me both to will and to do of His good pleasure.
And what a motive this would be for the highest activity in the maintenance of a fruitful branch-life! Motives are mighty powers; it is of infinite importance to have them high and clear. Here surely is the highest: 'You are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works:' grafted by Him into Christ, unto the bringing forth of much fruit. Whatever God creates is exquisitely suited to its end. He created the sun to give light: how perfectly it does its work! He created the eye to see: how beautifully it fulfills its object! He created the new man unto good works: how admirably it is fitted for its purpose.
Of God I am in Christ: created anew, made a branch of the Vine, fitted for fruit-bearing. Would God that believers would cease looking most at their old nature, and complaining of their weakness, as if God called them to what they were unfitted for! Would that they would believingly and joyfully accept the wondrous revelation of how God, in uniting them to Christ, has made Himself chargeable for their spiritual growth and fruitfulness! How all sickly hesitancy and sloth would disappear, and under the influence of this mighty motive -- the faith is the faithfulness of Him of whom they are in Christ -- their whole nature would rise to accept and fulfill their glorious destiny!"
From "Of God Are Ye in Christ Jesus" by Andrew Murray
| 2018/9/26 13:58||Profile|