Gospel of John Chapter 15 Unpacked
I am convinced the Bible defines us all, love it, hate it, no matter. We of course each wish to define ourselves, even define one another via all sorts of personal, subjective reasoning. The Book of God (and books that will be opened in the judgment) brings a very different standard to defining life and certainly the life of a Christian disciple.
I both love and am often truly upset with the Bible. It gives me the greatest comfort as well as the deepest sense of conviction and discomfort… sometimes in the same passage!
One of my favorite Bible chapters has long intrigued me for it’s real-world/real kingdom of God view. John records embracing yet shocking words of Jesus here.
The Lord lays out a “this is how Father God works in and through you… and this is the way things are in the present world” message. His discourse is both highly spiritual yet very practical. If there ever was a chapter on Christ-following discipleship unvarnished and without apology containing an astounding mix and balance of love and hard reality present in the truly engaged Christian life, John chapter fifteen’s twenty-seven verses is it!
At a later date I may publish my own understanding (flawed as I expect it would be)- but for now, it is you dear reader who may discover amazing definition by unpacking these powerful words of Jesus.
[-Note- To be truly thorough I suggest careful study by reading through this chapter with a key part of a question in mind. Narrow the focus. Make notes as you do. Prayerfully ponder your findings in light of the whole chapter as well as the minute details. The entire chapter often brings context for clarity just as one part of a single verse can. Shifting the focus from forest to trees, back and forth is truly helpful in study.]
Overview Questions for John 15:
WHO IS GOD- Character and nature of God:
Who does Jesus reveal Himself to be here?
Who does He seem to reveal the Father to be?
Who does He reveal the Holy Spirit to be in this chapter?
WHO ARE HIS DISCIPLES- Character and nature of a Christ-follower or non-follower:
What does He seem to say about the nature and attitude of His disciples?
What does He seem to say about those who are not His disciples?
In this chapter, what does Jesus seem to tell us about the “normal”, typical life or “walk” of those who are authentic disciples of His?
What does such a life seem to include, to look like in light of Jesus’ words in John fifteen?
Who and what defines you? I ask myself the same question often. I believe Jesus brings much definition to light in this chapter.
Thanks for stopping by. -Glenn