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Grace Bible Church
Pastor Teacher
Robert R. McLaughlin
Tree of Life
Weekly Review
The analogy of physical food verse the analogy of spiritual food.

In the Bible, GOD speaks to man concerning HIS Word and man speaks to GOD concerning his need. When we come together, we don’t come together to hear men speak, we come together to hear GOD speak. The responsibility of the pastor is to take the message from GOD and bring it to the people.

I’ve always seen myself, not as a chef, but as a waiter. My responsibility is not to create a cookbook but to bring healthy and tasty spiritual food to the believer and also to try to get it to the table without messing it up. Remember there is a direct relationship between physical food verses spiritual food.

Look at what the LORD said to the prophet Jeremiah in JER 3:15, “Then I will give you shepherds after My own heart, who will feed you on knowledge and understanding.”

Please notice once again, the analogy of physical food verse the analogy of spiritual food.

JER 15:16, Thy words were found and I ate them, And Thy words became for me a joy and the delight of my heart; For I have been called by Thy name, O LORD GOD of hosts.

In fact, also in the book of JOB, the oldest book in the Bible, the relationship and the analogy of physical food compared with the spiritual food of Bible doctrine is found.

In JOB 23:12 we read, “I have not departed from the command of His lips; I have treasured the words of His mouth more importantly than my necessary food.”

The most popular passages on this principle is found, of course, in MAT 4:4, the LORD said, “It is written, 'Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of GOD;”

JER 15:16, Thy words were found and I ate them, And Thy words became for me a joy and the delight of my heart; For I have been called by Thy name, O LORD GOD of hosts.

Look at HEB 5:12-14, this is a passage that calls for advance doctrines which are classified as “solid food.” and For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of GOD, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is a babe or immature. But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses [physical and spiritual] trained to discern between divine good and human good also classified as evil.

And so, we come to the 15th chapter of the Gospel of John again. We begin with a little background to our passage as a reminder of where we are hours before our LORD would go to the Cross and look like.

ISA 52:14, Just as many were astonished at you, My people, So His appearance was marred more than any man, And His form more than the sons of men.

The Message Bible says in ISA 52:14, He didn't even look human‑‑ a ruined face, disfigured past recognition.

In ISA 53:2b, He has no stately form or majesty that we should look upon Him, nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.

ISA 53:4-7, Surely our griefs He Himself bore, and our sorrows He carried; Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, Smitten of GOD, and afflicted. But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well‑being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed. All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; But the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him. He was oppressed, and He was afflicted, Yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, So He did not open His mouth.

Now, the LORD and His disciples met together in a kind of secret place that we call upper room, and our LORD spent that night telling them many wonderful things, giving them many, many promises.

As that night moved on, our LORD exposed Judas as the traitor, and dismissed him without the other disciples even knowing what He had said to Judas and what Judas was planning to do.

So, we now continue with our main passage which deals with the challenge to produce productive or experiential righteousness which is found in the vine and the branch metaphor of JOH 15:1-8.

Productive means to achieve or to produce a significant action that produces or manufactures divine good which is a standard of good that comes from intrinsic action or divine good which motivated by means of grace.

Productive also is defined as having the quality of life and the divine power at your disposal producing especially in abundance.

On the other hand, we also describe this type of righteousness as “experiential righteousness” which by definition means that we go through certain situations by observation and even education = known as empiricism or experience.

Empiricism is the theory that all knowledge is derived from sense also known as experience. Empiricism is a philosophical perspective based on experience and observation and empiricism is also a philosophical belief that states your knowledge of the world is based on your experiences, particularly your sensory experiences.

This is when people learn some things in life by seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, speaking, etc. (etcetera).

According to empiricists, our learning is based on our observations and perception; and the empiricist believes that knowledge is not possible without experience.

One of the best passages that goes with all these principles that I have given to you before is REV 19:8, And it was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.

And, it is those righteous acts that we are going to study, not the imputed righteousness from GOD which is one of the greatest gifts that GOD gave to us at the moment of our salvation but experiential or productive righteousness which produces “works” that glorify the LORD and reward the believer.

JOH 15:1-8, “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every {branch} that bears fruit, He prunes it, that it may bear more fruit. You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, so neither {can} you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me, and I in him, he bears much fruit; for apart from Me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch, and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you. By this is My Father glorified, that you bear much fruit, and {so} prove to be My disciples.”


Now, in JOH 15, this particular passage is the end of the upper room discourse, and as we begin chapter 15, we get into the Gethsemane discourse. Ordinarily most people think that chapters 15 and 16 were given in the upper room, but the last in chapter 14 more or less dispels that idea. So, we now go from the upper room into the Garden of Gethsemane.

In fact, all of a sudden we have a new discourse, “I am the vine,” as JOH 15:1 states.

But in JOH 18:1 we read, When Jesus had spoken these words, He went forth with His disciples over the ravine of the Kidron, where there was a garden, into which He Himself entered, and His disciples.

Now, it was just outside of the Garden HE spoke, Joh 15 and 16. Alright, the outline of Joh 15, this was the beginning of the Gethsemane discourse.

Joh 15 can be divided into three major doctrinal principles that our LORD desired to teach to His disciples

  1. The first section I believe is found in the first eight verses of Joh 15, which is where we have the production of phase 2 or living the spiritual life in time which is the answer to the question; “After Salvation, what?
  2. In second section, verses 9‑17, we have a dissertation on true biblical love as it is stated by our LORD who called this type of love, which is agape love, a new commandment. It is not new in understanding; it is new in experience and application.

Look at JOH 13:34, our LORD calls this type of love;  “a new commandment that He gives to us, so that we love one another, even as our LORD loved us, that we also love one another.

  1. Finally, in the third section, verses 18‑27, we have the hostility of the cosmos or the world system and the reasons why the world hates us or those who reject Cosmic system 1 and/or 2.

So, we have the production of phase 2, which is the dissertation on biblical love and we have the hostility that comes from the cosmic system or what some believers just call the “world.”

So, we have a story of love and hate. We are to love one another and hate the cosmic system which is drenched with human viewpoint from using human power instead of divine power, which brings glory to the LORD.

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