Are we ‘PRODUCING’ the ‘FRUIT’ that God ‘EXPECTS’ from us? "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. 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 5:1-2)
Isaiah chapter 5 contains a song (vv. 1–7), a lament (vv. 8–23), and a judgment (vv. 24–30). The song (vv. 1–7) has been named as Isaiah’s “Song of the Vineyard” and is a prime example of the sublime poetic style of Isaiah, unexcelled anywhere in literature. This song has three parts: an introduction to the allegory (vv. 1, 2); an accusation and sentence (vv. 3–6); and an interpretation of the allegory (v. 7; see Psalms 80:8–16).
In this allegory, the Well-beloved or Beloved represents Jehovah God, and the vineyard represents Israel and Judah (v. 7). God expected Israel and Judah to be an obedient, holy, witnessing people. However, the people produced bigotry, injustice, and idolatry instead of a witness to the nations, and they did this in spite of God’s abundant love and care!
In this song, Isaiah rehearses the tender care of God for His vineyard. God had chosen the best location, had cultivated the land Himself, had planted it with the choicest vine, had protected it, and had even prepared a winepress in the hope of a good harvest. However, instead of the harvest of good grapes (representing obedience, thanksgiving, love, worship, service) that God had expected, what grew out was bad-smelling, wild grapes (representing disobedience, rebellion, and idolatry).
Thus, in spite of all God’s gracious efforts, His “vineyard” (Israel and Judah) yielded only bad grapes. The people’s sin was ingratitude, taking their blessings for granted and using them selfishly. Instead of serving the Lord, they served themselves, and the result was a corrupted nation. Therefore, God denounces it with judgment to come, indicating the coming Babylonian captivity.
To apply this allegory to our lives, the owner and the vineyard stand for God and His people. This song is fulfilled in Jesus Christ (Matt. 21:33–44), who has become our true vine. We are the branches that have been grafted to Jesus, the true vine. We are expected to draw all the nourishment from vine by abiding in Him, and produce much fruit that God desires from our lives. Let us examine our lives today to check if we are indeed producing the fruit that God is expecting from our lives!