Monday, December 29, 2008

The Vine and the Branches

A branch may be cut off and separated from the vine - but no branch shall ever be separated from Christ, this heavenly Vine. Some tell us that a justified person may fall away finally. Is not Christ a perfect Vine? He is not perfect if a living branch may be plucked off from Him. Has not Christ said of His elect, "I give them eternal life, and they will never perish—ever! No one will snatch them out of My hand!" John 10:28. If any branch is plucked away from Christ, it is either because Christ is not able to keep it—or because He is willing to lose it. He is surely able to keep it, for He is strengthened with the Godhead; and He is not willing to lose it, for why, then, would He have shed His blood for it? So that no branch shall ever be separated from the celestial Vine. You may sooner pluck a star out of the sky—than a true believer from Christ. Indeed, hypocrites who look like branches, fall off—but they were never really in the Vine. They were in Christ by profession, not by union. They were tied on to the vine but not engrafted. An elect branch can no more perish than the root!

-Thomas Watson, p. 405, A Plea for the Godly, Soli Deo Gloria

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