Christianity is unique among all other religions for quite a few reasons. But one of the most shocking is the belief that through faith in Christ humans can have a relationship with God. No other faith offers that! Scripture goes even further in Hebrews and proclaims that we have "bold access to the throne of grace..." Our God does't call us to cower and beg, but to boldly approach Him as a child to their father.
This week we are looking at our second core value, Walk Closely. We will focus in on what it means to walk closely with God, in relationship with Him. As you read through this passage from John 15, think about how amazing it is that The Creator of all things, knows us, wants us to know Him, and wants an ongoing relationship with us.
“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 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.
9 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete
John 15:1-11 NIV
As you read ask yourself these questions:
1. What does it mean that Jesus is the vine, we are the branches, and the Father is the Gardener?
2. What do you think it looks like for us to "Remain in Jesus" in our day to day lives?
3. What do you think it looks like for Jesus' Words to remain in us?
4. What regular rhythms do you have, or want to develop in order to better remain in Jesus
5. How can your DNA group challenge or encourage you in this?
Other suggested resources to grow in your relationship with Jesus
Book: An Unhurried Life - Alan Fadling
Book: A Praying Life - Paul Miller
Devotional Book: The Songs of Jesus - Timothy Keller
App: Read Scripture App
App: You Version Bible App