In light of Sunday's message on the Vine and Branches from John 15 I looked into the relationship between the vine and the branches biologically. Here is a quote from the online encyclopedia, Wikipedia:
Stems have four main functions which are:
- Support for and the elevation of leaves, flowers and fruits. The stems keep the leaves in the light and provide a place for the plant to keep its flowers and fruits.
- Transport of fluids between the roots and the shoots in the xylem and phloem.
- Storage of nutrients.
- The production of new living tissue. The normal life span of plant cells is one to three years. Stems have cells called meristems that annually generate new living tissue.
I couldn't help but think of the connection with Jesus' illustration. As the vine, He provides the support we need. He keeps us in the light and produces fruit and the means for spiritual reproduction. He nourishes us just as the stem feeds the branch here and He is the source of the new life within us and through us to others.
John 15:5 "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing."