Hebrew Highlights 32 – As Plants
Shalom. This is Yuval Shomron, coming to you from Jerusalem.
PSA 128:1-4 (A Song of Ascents.) How blessed is everyone who fears the Lord, Who walks in His ways. When you shall eat of the fruit of your hands, You will be happy and it will be well with you. Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine, Within your house, Your children like olive plants Around your table. Behold, for thus shall the man be blessed Who fears the Lord.
Have you ever thought of yourself, or of your spouse or children as plants? This theme is repeated many times in many ways throughout the scriptures. For instance, in PSA 92:12-13, we are told that “The righteous man will flourish like the palm tree, He will grow like a cedar in Lebanon. Planted in the house of the Lord, They will flourish in the courts of our God.” Or, how about PSA 52:8, “But as for me, I am like a green olive tree in the house of God; I trust in the lovingkindness of God forever and ever.”
This idea of us being compared to plants is carried on by Yeshua in the famous passage in JOH 15:5, "I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me, and I in him, he bears much fruit; for apart from Me you can do nothing.”
So, what is the point exactly. Let’s think about plants and trees for a moment. You may know that in both trees, and many other kinds of plants, the root system is as big, or sometimes even bigger than what we see above ground. The plant spends as much time and energy seeking nourishment from its source as it does reaching out and bearing fruit. In fact, if a plant stops flowering, there’s a good chance that the problem lies below the surface.
I remember reading once about a grapevine somewhere in England that was known to be hundreds of years old. It had continued to bear consistently, even through years of drought. After an exhaustive investigation, it was discovered that the vine’s root system extended to a river, 6 miles away.
If we can spend as much energy seeking the Lord, our source of nourishment, as we do trying to minister, we may actually have some fruit to show for our efforts. Also, being firmly stuck in Him, we will not be toppled by life’s unrelenting storms.
Other than fruit, there is something else trees provide, and that is shade. Shade for others around us, who may be suffering from the heat of the spiritual battle, to find shelter in.
Another natural wonder about plants is, of course, is that they reproduce. When we are strong and healthy, and working according to the Master Vine Dresser’s plan, new believers will spring up around us.
We also cannot forget, that trees need to pruned, and vines trimmed. Again, this makes the roots, and the trunk, or stem, stronger and stronger. Is it any wonder that the Lord himself was referred to as a stem in prophecy in
ISA 11:1-2, “Then a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse, And a branch from his roots will bear fruit. And the Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him, The spirit of wisdom and understanding, The spirit of counsel and strength, The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.”
By the way, the Hebrew word “geza” can be translated equally as stem, trunk, or stump. Even when, for some reason or another, a tree has been cut down, a new sprout can spring from the stump. When Yeshua was cut down, and died, He rose again gloriously, and bore the fruit of the church. The seed of His Holy Spirit continues to reproduce itself through us, if we don’t let our own roots dry up.
One more little gem of truth about plants comes to mind. They do well when not alone in the field. Trees like to be in orchards, plants in rows, and vines entangled with one another. Their pollen is spread better in this way, and their fruit increases.
I’ll leave you today with a wonderful blessing. This is a good one to share with your family. You might even want to hang it up somewhere as a reminder.
PSA 144:12-15 Let our sons in their youth be as grown-up plants, And our daughters as corner pillars fashioned as for a palace; Let our garners be full, furnishing every kind of produce, And our flocks bring forth thousands and ten thousands in our fields; Let our cattle bear, Without mishap and without loss, Let there be no outcry in our streets! How blessed are the people who are so situated; How blessed are the people whose God is the Lord!
Shalom, Shalom from Jerusalem.