Our Relationship to Christ (as branches to the vine) v1, 5a
Jesus uses an illustration to explain our relationship with Him. We are bound to Him, we draw our life from Him. Without Him we were truly dead, and without our connection to Him we would be dead again. This is a clear picture of salvation as a relationship with God, not the discovery of some secret knowledge; not a fact that we accept.
Perhaps some other word-pictures would help us understand the truth being explained, and the misunderstanding we have applied to our salvation.
Understanding food is useless. We must eat. Sometimes we treat the Gospel as a fact that we simply acknowledge. That is like saying that nutrition is something we only recognize as a need, and then we can live without eating. You have to eat to benefit from food!
Or, we see salvation as an invitation only. That is like getting a letter from a VIP wanting to be our friend, and telling everybody we are friends with that VIP, never once interacting with them. The re is no relationship without interaction, regardless of what internet social media would have us think.
If your Christianity is nothing more than an intellectual position, I’m here to tell you that you are fooling yourself. You cannot be a follower of Jesus without following Him. That is so much more than opining that He died for your sins. That death demands a response of total surrender. We turn our selves and the control of our lives over to Him and His will.