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Secrets of the Vine: Breaking Through to Abundance (Breakthrough Series) Hardcover – Deluxe Edition, January 17, 2006

4.6 out of 5 stars 186 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

No one said it would be easy. In the first installment of his BreakThrough series, Dr. Bruce H. Wilkinson urged Christians to find the abundant life through following a simple prayer. In Secrets of the Vine, his follow-up to the bestselling The Prayer of Jabez, the president of Walk thru the Bible Ministries explores compelling images from Bible verse John 15 in support of his message that asking for God's blessings may result in suffering and difficult circumstances. Through Jesus' symbolic portrayal of himself as the vine, the Father as vinedresser, and his followers as the branches, Wilkinson believes that Christians can better understand God's methods for ensuring personal fulfillment, and find a closer walk with him.

Grapes need pruning--and so do Christians, Wilkinson writes. God's "pruning" is painful, but Wilkinson argues that this pruning away of "self" is necessary to gain desirable results. He notes, "Pruning will intensify as God's shears cut closer to the core of who you are." Wilkinson urges Christians not to confuse "pruning" with "discipline," and offers a helpful chart to distinguish between the two. He discusses four levels of fruit bearing, from "no fruit" to "much fruit," and the connection between God's pruning and an abundant harvest.

Wilkinson's warm, personable writing style helps him come across as a confidant and mentor. Even though he admits, "I assure you that I possess no special knowledge in these matters," millions of readers seem to think he does. He lays down the challenge: "If you don't know and apply Jesus's vineyard teachings, you'll never experience the abundant life you long for. There is simply no other way." Christians aspiring to maturity in their spiritual lives will likely sit up and take notice. --Cindy Crosby --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

That They Might Have Books More AbundantlyIn The Prayer of Jabez, Bruce Wilkinson took a single passage of Scripture and expounded on it so powerfully that Multnomah has just gone back to press for a total ofgulpfour million copies in print. The publisher is hoping that history will repeat itself with Wilkinson's follow-up, Secrets of the Vine: Breaking Through to Abundance. Here, Wilkinson takes on John 15 and divulges three secrets of "bearing fruit" more abundantly for Christ. Wilkinson has that special talent for making readers feel that his books speak directly and personally to them. Multnomah plans an initial release of 250,000 copiesand after that, who knows?

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Series: Breakthrough Series (Book 2)
  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Multnomah; Anniversary edition edition (January 17, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590524969
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590524961
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.6 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (186 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,439 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAME on May 21, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I enjoy hearing what others have to say about the Bible, especially those who have a knowledge of Hebrew. They can gather meanings that are not apparent to me from the plain words in the English translation. I was delighted to find that The Secrets of the Vine focuses on one of the most puzzling Bible stories I have ever read, and expanded my knowledge of what that story means. Through a combination of this new understanding and reflecting on The Prayer of Jabez, I have come to appreciate new choices concerning my relationship to God. That's a great gift, and I feel deeply moved by the experience. I think you will be, too.
After the Last Supper, Jesus took His disciples outside to visit a vineyard in order to teach a lesson. Obviously, this was a most important lesson because it came as the last ordinary conversation they could have together in person. The story is told in John 15.
"I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser." John 15:1
"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."
"I am the vine, you are the branches."
"He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit."
"By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit."
Bruce Wilkinson does a good job of explaining about viticulture as a way of expanding the meaning of these passages. The vine itself is the bulky gnarly trunk that comes up from the ground and is kept pruned into just a few branches. The branches are tied up to keep them in the air. If they are not tied up, they fall to the ground where dirt and disease will keep them from bearing fruit.
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Format: Hardcover
In the first book: The Prayer of Jabez, Dr. Bruce H. Wilkinson explains how we can have an abundant life by knowing how to pray to God. In this second book of the BreakThrough Series, he takes the verses in John 15 and explores the four levels of "fruit bearing" in order to show you how God works in your life to answer your prayer.

This is the message Jesus gave to his disciples on the night he was betrayed. As he was about to defeat sin, he was explaining how his followers could also defeat sin and live an abundant life.

"The disciples knew grapes like an Englishman knows tea." pg. 59

So, it is no wonder the story of vines would have made complete sense to the disciples and be perhaps a bit of a secret to those of us who have never been taught how to grow grapes. Dr. Wilkinson brings the story alive as he tells of how the disciples followed Jesus to a vineyard. There he teaches them about how he is the true vine and his father is the vinedresser/husbandman (gardener). The fruit God desires of us is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. When God works through you, others will see these qualities in your life and want to know who God is and perhaps become Christians themselves.

When a Christian does not bear any fruit, it is often thought that perhaps they are not a Christian after all. Jesus says that if a branch does not bear fruit he takes it away. Dr. Wilkinson delves into the Greek translation to bring more understanding to the words used. He brings a new meaning to the word "airo" and explains how it could mean "take up" instead of "cut off." This was enlightening in many regards and is an explanation of this verse as I have never heard it before.
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Format: Hardcover
Bruce did a wonderful job of expounding on Jesus teaching about the vine and the branches. His analogy of the four baskets--from "no fruit" to "much fruit" is enlightenng. And his insight into the difference between discipline and pruning shows that both processes are painful and how we can discern between the two. Something we can all benefit by knowing, because at some time in our lives, if we are truely in the vine, we will experience both. I have.
It's encourageing to know that even during times of discipline the vinedresser--our loving Father--is caring for us in a tender, loving way, in order that we might bear fruit. If only we would choose to bend in the way that He chooses. And when He prunes us, even though it's painful, it's so that we will be more fruitful.
While reading this little gem, I was able to recognize that the pain I suffered a couple of years ago, was a result of God's pruning in my life. It brought me joy to be able to recognize the fruit that's sprung forth as a result of that pruning. Now, all I have is the task of living in obedience and abiding in Him, waiting for the pruning shears to cut again, in order for more fruit to come forth. What could be better?
But because I'm not perfect, at some time I'm sure the hand of disciple will touch me again. Only after reading this book, now I know what to look for in discering why the pain is there, whether it be pruning or discipline.
By applying the Prayer of Jabez and the principles in Secrets of The Vine my life has been enriched. But something that struck me as I read this book, was how often I miss out on understanding a spiritual truth because I didn't take the time to really study. I have a Strong's Concordance, so I have no excuse.
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