August 20, 2023 | I AM the vine

Big Idea

“Remaining” in Jesus is the answer to longing for how to make lasting change possible. He is the vine and we are the branches.


John 15:1-8 and Galatians 5:22-23

Opening Questions

It’s been a busy time at the box office this summer. Have you seen any of the recent movie releases…The Sound of Freedom, Oppenheimer or Barbie? If so, share your thoughts and reactions. If not, which movie would you most likely see at the theatre and why?


In our current series, we look at the “I AM” statements in the Gospel of John, the fourth book in the New Testament written by one of Jesus’ closest friends and followers. Through these statements, Jesus tells us about Himself and the kind of life He came to bring.

Bible Discussion

  1. Read John 15:1-8. Jesus uses an agricultural metaphor to teach us about how change happens. Who is the gardener, who is the vine and who are the branches? What does each role tell us about who they are and what they do?
  2. How does change occur according to Jesus’ metaphor in John 15:1-8?
  3. Jesus refers to two types of pruning in John 15:2. How are they different and the same? Can you think of pruning examples from people of great faith in the Bible? Share what they have in common.
  4. Consider the context in which Jesus is sharing this metaphor. How do you think the disciples were feeling at this point? Why do you think these were some of the last words Jesus shared with His disciples before He was betrayed?
  5. Read Galatians 5:22-23. Give a definition of each of the nine fruits and an example of what that looks like in a person’s life.

Life Application

  1. Jesus uses the word “remain” (or “abide”) eight times in John 15:1-8. How do you best “remain” in Jesus?
  2. Are there areas in your life where God is currently pruning you? Or maybe it was a previous pruning. Share a time when you “remained” in Him during the pruning. What is/was that like for you? What fruit is being/was produced?
  3. Jesus promises if you “remain” in Him, you will bear fruit in your relationship with God, with the church and in your relationship with the world. Is this true in your life? Why do you think that is? Having your You+ conversation can help. Answer the nine questions at to get started to better “remain” in Jesus.
  4. What can you do this week to nurture the fruit of the Holy Spirit listed in Galatians 5:22- 23? Spend some time praying together, asking God to help you “remain” in Him.