I AM…The True Vine
Like the sixth self-description, the seventh and final one occurs in the “Upper Room Discourse.” In it, Jesus describes himself as “the true vine.” Here, Jesus draws on many Old Testament references that describe Israel as the vine (Ps. 80, Isa. 5, Jer. 2, Ez. 15). Often, these Old Testament descriptions would be deeply sad—the story of a vine rescued from Egypt and planted in Canaan only to become wild and corrupt. Jesus, free of corruption, is the true vine—the one who gives life to all who remain in him. He is what Israel failed to be. This passage is not without admonition. Just like a branch that loses contact to the vine is lifeless, a life without connection to Jesus is fruitless.