Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Tim. 2:15

King James AV1611


The Names of Christ
"NAMES OF CHRIST"© -is a book written by Dr. James Modlish
-reprinted here with the author's permission-

Lesson Twenty One

The Vine (Part 2)
(John 15:1-8)

Introduction: Part one dealt with Gods planted vineyard (Israel) and all the advantages that were given to that nation. God Himself freed the vineyard from large stones, built a fence around it, built a watchman tower in the midst of it, cultivated and pruned it, and built a winepress in it. In spite of all these benefits Israel (a picture of the flesh) miserably failed. After leading His disciples through the Last Supper, Jesus said "I am the true vine".

This lesson will deal with the vine, the branches, and the fruit. 


A. The vine is central to the subject - Jesus pointed out the obvious in (Jn. 15:4) when He said "As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine;" Even though it is a fundamental fact too few people transfer the application to the realm of the spiritual.

B. Propagation -

[1]. Seed - According to Encyclopedia Americana "Grapevines are grown from seeds only for stocks and to breed new varieties." Jesus was born of a new seed (Gen. 3:15; Lk. 1:3,5; Jn. 1:1; Luke 8:11; 1 Pet. 1:23) because there was a great need for a new stock. The works and religion of man had failed - there was no fruit. (See also Jn. 12:24)

[2]. Cuttings - "Named varieties are propagated by taking a cutting from a mother plant and giving it a chance to grow. Through cutting millions of plants of any variety, each like the original, one from a seed, may be grown for all time." - Encyclopedia Americana

There is a fundamental difference between the pruning and the cuttings. The prunings are cast into the fire while the cuttings are placed in the ground to root. The obvious picture is the invisible link between the vine and the cutting, even though they are geographically removed from one another. The cuttings grows to eventually be exactly like the original vine - your final destiny in Christ (1 Jn. 3:2).

[3]. Layering - A Layer is a branch of a plant bent to the earth, covered with soil, to take root while still a part of the parent. The branch through which life giving substance flows could be typed in the church, in that it is a physical manifestation. The visible body of Christ offers spiritual nourishment.

[4]. Grafting - "In grafting, a cion or bud from one grapevine is inserted in another so that there will be a union between the two parts. As the cion grows, it retains all characters of the plant from which it came." - Encyclopedia Americana

One of the main purposes in grafting is to pick up the disease resistant properties that may be in the root stock. This is an excellent picture of the old and new nature. When a person is grafted into the vine (Rom. 11:16-25) he adopts a second nature but falls to lose the old one.


A. The training of the branches - There are a variety of methods in training the branches. The Umbrella Kniffin method, the Chautauqua Arm method, the Keuka high renewal method, and the Munson method to mention a few.

The grapevines are trained on trellises. One year old branches are always used to be tied to the vine. The idea is that the husbandman knows that the branches need plenty of support and just how to provide it. A spur is always left for a future branch.

B. Pruning - From the first year grapevines must be pruned. To prune, the grower must know the parts of a vine.

As (Jn. 15) indicated the only branches that are left are the ones with the greatest possibility of bearing fruit. Grapevines are pruned during the time of dormancy.


As our text indicates, the fruit is the most important thing in terms of long-range desired results.

A. Varieties of fruit - Twenty species of grapes grow wild in the U.S. and Canada, from four of which about 1000 cultivated varieties have been bred, to which may be added at least 200 varieties of the Old World grape.

Grapes to the number of 2,000 varieties are described in the grape literature of North America; perhaps, twice as many more are cultivated in other viticultural regions of the world. This simply reminds us that the vine bears a lot of different kinds of fruit (Gal. 5:22,23). Grapes are used for juice, table fare, and raisins. God uses His fruit to accomplish a number of different things.

B. Enemies of the fruit - There are a large number of insects and diseases that attack grapes. The most common problems in eastern America are black rot and downy mildew. Interestingly both of these fungi are kept in check with Bordeaux mixture. It is a solution of copper sulfate (CuSO4) and lime.

CuS04 is the most important salt of copper. Commonly known as blue vitriol, it is blue in color. It is soluble in water, but NOT soluble at all in alcohol. It Is sometimes used as a superficial antiseptic in some treatments, but if taken internally is extremely poisonous. If used in the proper amounts, it can be an excellent wood preservative.

"Lime" generally means calcium oxide, and the related forms of calcium compounds which are related to it. It is made by roasting limestone. It is a very strong base, and is therefore, of course, useful in neutralizing acids ... In soil it is used for promoting crop production by correcting soil acidity and furnishing important plant nutrients.

Interestingly enough, the base metal for CuS04 (copper) and lime are two of some of the earliest materials used by man. Both the Bible and archaeology support the fact that ancient civilizations knew both how to make lime and how to refine copper. (and derive its most important salt, copper sulfate). Therefore, the raw materials for making "Bordeaux mixture" were readily available in most Bible cultures, It is not known whether or not this discovery of Bordeaux mixture might perhaps have been predated to ancient times. The possibility exists.

The poison of the copper mixture is said to act lethally on the "sour-causing" fungi, and the lime regulates the acid/base environment. Though other chemical compounds have since been discovered to combat fungi and other plant diseases, the old "Bordeaux mixture" continues to be one of the most effective.

The idea is that any fungi that produces "sour grapes" often requires drastic action. Brass is an alloy of copper and always referred to by way of judgment (Ex. 39:39; Num. 21:8,9). (See also 2 Tim. 4:14)

Lime is spoken of in (Isa. 3:12, and Amos 2:1) with the idea that judgment eventually neutralizes the problem.


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