The Two-Step Purging Process
“Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.” -- John 15:3
The two-step process that God uses is very simple. First, He removes the dead wood; second He cleans up the remaining living wood. Merrill Tenney writes the following in his excellent commentary on the Gospel of John:
“Dead wood harbors insects and disease and may cause the vine to rot, to say nothing of being unproductive and unsightly. Live wood must be trimmed back in order to prevent such heavy growth that the life of the vine goes back into the wood rather than into the fruit. The vineyards in the early spring look like a collection of barren, bleeding stumps; but in the fall they are filled with luxuriant purple grapes.”
The spiritual application is given by Dr. Tenney: “As the farmer wields the pruning knife on his vines, so God cuts dead wood our from among His saints, and often cuts back the living wood so far that His method seems cruel. Nevertheless, from those who have suffered the most there often comes the greatest fruitfulness.”
Can I look back at times in my life when God’s purging was clearly evident?
Have I ever experienced things that I thought would render me useless for God, only to see Him take those and produce a rich harvest? - Peter Laitres