CHRIST’S teaching of his Gospel was designed to make it simple that anyone with a desire to understand it could do so with ease. For the Gospel of Christ is meant to redeem and to take the burden off, not to add them. It is meant to brighten the understanding not to confuse.
In John 15 Jesus uses the parable of the vine tree to illustrate the relationship between him, God the Father, his disciples and all those who would believe in him in all ages. Christ represents himself as the true vine planted and nurtured on earth by God the father who is the farmer.
The Christian is here represented as a branch. As in a tree the branch grows out of the tree trunk and it depends on the tree for its food and drink. The unity between the tree and the branch is such that it is impossible for the tree to eat or drink without the branch eating and drinking as well. The healthiness and attractiveness of the fruit which the branch produces depends entirely on the food it gets from the tree. The spiritual health of any Christian therefore depends entirely on the closeness of their relationship with God.
Jesus says “I am the true vine and ye are the branches…” and that all who would abide and conform to his teachings he would in turn make them bring forth the fruits of righteousness. He makes it clear also that without him one cannot produce any fruit of godliness at all. Here Christ defines to his disciples and the rest of Christian world how they should know whether they are part of him practically or just by name.
He starts by saying I am the “true” vine, meaning that there is a counterfeit vine as well. The branches engrafted to the trunk of the true vine produces true fruit and those engrafted to the counterfeit will likewise produce fake fruit. The word Christianity is therefore misrepresented or abused as it is today used as an umbrella name for all those who claim to believe in Christ regardless of whether their lives conforms to what is expected of a Christian or not. This is a mistake which has been designed by the devil to confuse people. A Christian should be known for their righteous way of living which is the true fruit of Godliness.
The word of God says that if a kingdom or a house is divided against itself it cannot stand. This is true for Christianity as the house of God. It therefore becomes crucial that true Christianity must be defined as different from the counterfeit so as not to confuse the two as one house. The counterfeit gospel has always been there and has in these end of time days mushroomed to its climax. The prosperity gospel is the best example of a counterfeit as it has no basis in Christ’s gospel. However, the world over it prosperity gospel seems to be has overtaking the preaching of the true Gospel of Christ.
Jesus never taught his disciples to acquire riches, acquire farms, build schools and all the earthly things which we see people concentrating on today. These things are easily acquired by atheist and thieves who know best how to cheat heartlessly. Could God send his son to suffer for that rubbish? Obviously not, therefore a Christian group concentrating on preaching the gospel of prosperity can justifiably be classified as a counterfeit.
The popular healing crusades and exorcisms, without any mention of the salvation of the soul misrepresent the true Gospel of Christ. This is also part and parcel of the counterfeit gospel. Whilst the gospel of Christ embodies healing of the sick, its core and first message is “repent from your sins”. To claim to heal and exorcise thousands of people whilst one takes young children as wives is causing more damage than good and therefore is a counterfeit type of Christianity.
From the vineyards of this world we seek for grapes as from a Christian we seek for Christianity and Christianity only. Christians should therefore beknown as ambassadors of righteousness, peace and love amongst themselves, in their homes and amongst the lost world. Those are the true fruits of salvation.
Salvation is not theoretical but a way of living. A Christian’s life, conversation and disposition will declare them a child of God. The Christian as the branch abides and depends in all they do on Christ the true vine and are known for the fruits of the holy spirit.