I was trimming some roses. I noticed that for some reason many of the branches had died so I was removing them. As I become aware of how easy removing the dead branches was I remembered Yeshua said “I am the vine and you are the branches.
Those who stay united with me, and I with them, are the ones who bear much fruit; because apart from me you can’t do a thing. Unless a person remains united with me, he is thrown away like a branch and dries up. Such branches are gathered and thrown into the fire, where they are burned up.” John 15:5-6
Burned? As I looked at the easily broken dead branches I wondered what the point of mentioning the dead breaches would be burned was when the dead cannot feel anything. But then I thought that might be the point, as we die spiritually we become numb. So numb we cannot even feel that our connection with God is broken. When we are dead we don’t care what the consequences are. The dead don’t feel any urgency. The dead don’t feel any need to change.
Living breaches are not easily broken. They have flexibility and reliance. The older the branches get the stronger the branches will be. And as we bond with God and accept the new life He gives us we too will well grow strong and will not be easily broken off. If we are attacked with the help of God our leaves will grow back. But dead branches do not grow back and when bent they break easily. The spiritually drying and dead do not endure the storms times in life but what is most dangerous is that they do not look as if they are disconnected to the source of life. In fact they are still physically attached but they are not internally benefited from it. In other words, they appeared to be attached to the source of life externally but were dead internally.
If we are not careful we can die while still being physically attached to the body of Yeshua without noticing. We can be among other strong believers with leaves and not have any leaves or signs of spiritual life ourselves. Just because we look like we are securely attached to God and others who know God physically doesn’t mean we know God ourselves spiritually. Like the dead branches we can be apart from God and yet part of a congregation that believes in God at the same time. We can be immersed in the Torah externally and not be changed on the inside. Don’t let the numbness of spiritual death sneak up on you. The worse your relationship with God is the less you notice.
Neglecting prayer and the word of God can start slowly and lead to forsaking God in an obvious external manner but it is also possible to pray to God, read about God, and seem to be attached to God but not know God because we don’t listen to what God says and grow in our relationship with Him. We need to spend time with God and not think that just because we are associated with the truth doctrinally that we are fine. We are only fine as we don’t neglect what God says by accepting the spiritual food from the root of God’s word and relying on His power to change us.
Picture originally found here