Would you rather have parts cut away or simply die when you could be saved?
Pruning the tree and purifying the Gold
Remove the parts that kill – the diseased and infected limbs in order to create a resilient and well grounded core that is better able to resist and endure problems and bear better fruit in greater quantity?
Have you ever noticed the degree of pruning/hacking that an arborist will exact on trees or bushes? When I look at grapevines being cared for, I have to trust the vinedresser that he knows what he is doing.
John 15:1 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.
John 15:2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.
John 15:3 You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.
John 15:4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.
John 15:5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
John 15:6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.
John 15:7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.
John 15:8 By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.
John 15:9 “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love.
John 15:10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.
Applicable to the individual and the collective church
Isaiah 5:1 Now let me sing to my Well-beloved A song of my Beloved regarding His vineyard: My Well-beloved has a vineyard On a very fruitful hill.
Isaiah 5:2 He dug it up and cleared out its stones, And planted it with the choicest vine. He built a tower in its midst, And also made a winepress in it; So He expected it to bring forth good grapes, But it brought forth wild grapes.
Isaiah 5:3 “And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem and men of Judah, Judge, please, between Me and My vineyard.
Isaiah 5:4 What more could have been done to My vineyard That I have not done in it? Why then, when I expected it to bring forth good grapes, Did it bring forth wild grapes?
Isaiah 5:5 And now, please let Me tell you what I will do to My vineyard: I will take away its hedge, and it shall be burned; And break down its wall, and it shall be trampled down.
Isaiah 5:6 I will lay it waste; It shall not be pruned or dug, But there shall come up briers and thorns. I will also command the clouds That they rain no rain on it.”
Isaiah 5:7 For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, And the men of Judah are His pleasant plant. He looked for justice, but behold, oppression; For righteousness, but behold, a cry for help.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
Refining Gold (another analogy that God uses)
Gold and great heat
Malachi 3:3 He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, And purge them as gold and silver, That they may offer to the LORD An offering in righteousness.
1 Peter 1:6 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials,
1 Peter 1:7 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ,
Revelation 3:18 I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see.
Revelation 3:19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent.
Revelation 3:21 To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.
God the Refiner, He is the one that will do this for us and to us.
Psalm 66:10 For You, O God, have tested us; You have refined us as silver is refined.
Change Through Trials
Hebrews 12:3 For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.
Hebrews 12:4 You have not yet resisted to bloodshed, striving against sin.
Hebrews 12:5 And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: “MY SON, DO NOT DESPISE THE CHASTENING OF THE LORD, NOR BE DISCOURAGED WHEN YOU ARE REBUKED BY HIM;
Hebrews 12:6 FOR WHOM THE LORD LOVES HE CHASTENS, AND SCOURGES EVERY SON WHOM HE RECEIVES.”
Hebrews 12:7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten?
Hebrews 12:8 But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons.
Hebrews 12:9 Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live?
Hebrews 12:10 For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness.
Hebrews 12:11 Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
Change by the Word of God
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
Get Rid of the Dying Parts
Colossians 3:1 If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.
Colossians 3:2 Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.
Colossians 3:3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
Colossians 3:4 When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.
Colossians 3:5 Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.
Colossians 3:6 Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience,
Colossians 3:7 in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them.
Colossians 3:8 But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.
Colossians 3:9 Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds,
Colossians 3:10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him,
Colossians 3:11 where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.
Colossians 3:12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering;
Colossians 3:13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.
Colossians 3:14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.
Colossians 3:15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.
Colossians 3:16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.
Colossians 3:17 And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.
Romans 6:4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
Romans 6:5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection,
Romans 6:6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.
Romans 6:7 For he who has died has been freed from sin.
Ephesians 4:17 This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind,
Ephesians 4:18 having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart;
Ephesians 4:19 who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
Ephesians 4:20 But you have not so learned Christ,
Ephesians 4:21 if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus:
Ephesians 4:22 that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts,
Ephesians 4:23 and be renewed in the spirit of your mind,
Ephesians 4:24 and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.
2 Corinthians 4:16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.
2 Corinthians 4:17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory,
2 Corinthians 4:18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.