Connected to a Higher Source
Jesus wanted to get His disciples connected to a higher source than the religion they had been steeped in. The legalism they had practiced could identify adherents but couldn’t produce fruit that witnessed to Who the Father really is. The legalism was a witness to their personal determination but not to the character of the Father. The only thing their legalism communicated was that they were connected to a religion and its rules. Jn 15:8 “This is how my Father shows who he is–when you produce grapes, when you mature as my disciples.” (MSG) They had to be pruned back by the Word of Jesus just so that they would be ready to bear good fruit (15:2).