Hebrew Highlights 127 - Summer
Shalom! This is Yuval Shomron coming to you from Jerusalem.
GEN 8:22 "While the earth remains, Seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease."
There’s no doubt that we take the seasons for granted. And so it should be. Intrinsic to every man is a basic trust in God. Unfortunately some people try to speak of mother nature or father time. Even in this mistake is hidden the truth that a superior being is controlling things. With the exception of a few doomsayers who preach about global warming, most of us don’t worry about the arrival of each coming season.
Another scripture which mentions God’s jurisdiction over the phases of the year is PSA 74:17, “Thou hast established all the boundaries of the earth; Thou hast made summer and winter.” The fact is, there is nothing we can do about the seasons. We may cool our heat our house or car, but what goes on outside is entirely in the Almighty’s hand.
Let’s take a look today at one season in particular, that of summer. In our times, summer conjures up images of swimming pools, picnics, school holidays and family vacations. The months that define summer will vary, depending on which of the Northern or Southern hemispheres you happen to live in. In any case, summer means heat, and heat means taking it easy.
This was not so in Biblical times. Summer meant a time of extra labors, in preparation for the fall harvest. Even the animals were busy, as we see in PRO 6:6-8, “Go to the ant, O sluggard, Observe her ways and be wise, which, having no chief, officer or ruler, prepares her food in the summer, And gathers her provision in the harvest.”
This little creature gets more kudos in PRO 30:25, “The ants are not a strong folk, but they prepare their food in the summer.” By the way, in case you ever wondered, it really does call them a folk, or a people in Hebrew, using the word, “am.” This may seem laughable to us wise humans, but I would point out that most ant hills are probably not experiencing the disorganization, debt, and confusion describing many of our city councils.
One more verse ignoring our idea of summer vacations is PRO 10:5, “He who gathers in summer is a son who acts wisely, But he who sleeps in harvest is a son who acts shamefully.” Obviously I’m not suggesting we all go find a farm and volunteer to work in July and August. The principal here is simply that we work when we are supposed to, so that we might enjoy the benefits of our wages.
Jeremiah reflects on the season’s end as he laments in chapter 8, verse 20, when he says, "Harvest is past, summer is ended, and we are not saved." I hope that as a church we do not end up crying a similar expression of grief when we realize we have not done our job in evangelizing the ripe harvest fields before the Lord returns.
Yeshua mentions summer in MAR 13:28-29, "Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender, and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. "Even so, you too, when you see these things happening, recognize that He is near, right at the door.”
Our Heavenly Father uses the seasons as signs, to remind us both of His steadfastness, and of His promises of upcoming events. You probably remember either reading the verse, or hearing the song from ECC 3:1, “There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven.”
We can always count on God to do things when the right season has come. There is a somewhat humorous verse in PRO 26:1 I’d like to end with, “Like snow in summer and like rain in harvest, so honor is not fitting for a fool.”
We may be able to escape the “dog days” of summer with our air conditioners. However, we cannot escape God’s plan.
Shalom, Shalom from Jerusalem