When The Tree Is Green

February 7, 2011
by Lori Ciccanti

Luke 23:28,31 — But Jesus turning unto them said, Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children. For if they do these things in a green tree, what shall be done in the dry? (KJV)

During the spring, summer, and fall seasons, I love to sit on the back patio and enjoy the beautiful landscape my husband has designed in our yard. Beside the evergreens, the fig tree is one of my favourites, especially for its delicious fruit. To my amazement, the fig tree is one of many remarkable trees mentioned in Scripture with a spiritual lesson to observe.

Of notable significance, trees often represent people throughout the Bible. For instance, the first Psalm presents a wonderful allegory describing those whose delight is the Lord:

Psalm 1:3 – And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper. (KJV)

For believers, this is a comforting promise of prosperity.

But there is no better example of righteousness than our Lord Himself. What an awesome time it must have been for those who witnessed firsthand the blessings of Jesus' earthly life. The fruitfulness of Christ's ministry signified the "green tree" of the Messianic kingdom. Yet Jesus, undeserving of judgement, came to suffer because of our unrighteousness. 1 Peter 2:24 declares: "Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree." (KJV)

While carrying His cross toward Calvary, Jesus, concerned for the women who were weeping, quoted an interesting proverb. In today's Scripture, Jesus compared Himself to a green tree, saying that if He, the "righteous Branch" (Jeremiah 33:15) is unjustly condemned, then what will happen when the tree is dry? Like a tree that is easily burned in an instant, who will be able to stand on one's own merit?

Finally, there will be a glorious day coming when the Word of God tells us that "all the trees of the field will clap their hands" (Isaiah 55:12 NIV) when the Messiah reigns in righteousness and truth. At that time, we shall stand justified by His precious blood alone: this is our salvation and hope.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, we thank and praise You for sparing us from the judgement that we deserve. Keep us mindful, Lord, that You are the vine and we are the branches. Apart from Your grace, all our righteousness is as filthy rags. Help us to remain rooted and grounded in Your living Word so that we may produce an abundance of fruit in its season. In Jesus' mighty name, we pray. Amen.

About the author:

Lori Ciccanti <dlalsina@mchsi.com>
Ocean View, Delaware, USA

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