New International Version (NIV)
The Vine and the Branches
15 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.
During an international publishing conference, a young Frenchman described his experience at a book-signing event. A woman picked up one of his books, browsed through it, and exclaimed, “At last, a story that’s clean!” He replied gently, “I write clean because I think clean. It’s not an effort.” What he expressed in print came from within, where Christ had altered the very core of his life.
John 15 records Jesus’ lesson to His disciples about abiding in Him as The only means to a fruitful life. In the midst of His imagery of the vine and branches, Jesus said: “You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you”. Bible scholar W.E. Vines says that the Greek word for clean means ” free from impure admixture, without blemish, spotless.”
A pure heart is the work of Christ, and only in His power can we remain clean. We often fail, but “if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to…cleanse us from all unrighteousness”. Renewal is an inside job. Jesus has made us clean through his sacrifice and Word. Our speech and actions that strike others as being fresh and pure flow from inside out as we abide in Christ.
Admitting that we’re guilty,
Acknowledging our sin,
Then trusting in Christ’s sacrifice
Will make us clean within..
Confession to God brings cleansing from God…