I was standing yesterday and looking at a dead tree. Around this one lone dead tree there were many others trees that were healthy and full of life, but not this particular tree. This tree had no leaves, all its branches were bare and lifeless. Much of the tree had been broken by the wind, and what was left standing was no resemblance to the mighty tree that it once was.
There were no birds sitting in this tree. There were no nests in this tree. There were no squirrels on its branches, or any signs of life, as it was barren and dead.
The other trees near it were green and full of life. On these branches were leaves and fruit. There were squirrels running around jumping from tree to tree. There were many birds of many varieties in these trees and many forms of life on their branches.
The Bible tells us in
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.
In this piece I am contrasting the difference between death and life and using the dead tree that I see as an illustration.
If we live in sin and do not receive the salvation offered to us by God in His Son Christ Jesus we are like a dead tree. In a dead tree there is no shelter because its branches are bare. Birds and squirrels do not live or nest in this tree because there is nothing to cover and protect them from other animals that would prey upon them. There are no leaves to provide shelter from the storms or from the heat of the day. It is the same for us if we live in sin, our lives are as the dead tree, we do not have the shelter provided us by our Lord and we are attacked and fall prey to things in life that harm us and bring us spiritual death.
There is no nourishment from this dead tree, as it bears no fruit. There is nothing to sustain life. Trees are so important to God that you will find them in Heaven. We read about the tree of life here in Revelation.
Revelation 22:2 Between the city street and the river, the tree of life was visible from each side. It produced twelve kinds of fruit, each month having its own fruit. The leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations.
Jesus is the tree of life. He is the author of all life, the natural, the spiritual, and the eternal. The fruit that He produces are the blessings of life and grace. We who are in Christ by faith partake of that fruit, and we are nourished by the fruit of that tree. In the fruit of Christ we find food for our spirit that quickens our souls, comforts us, and strengthens us. The fruit of Christ is indeed satisfying; they are the gifts of Christ to all who believe and by faith partake of Him.
As true believers in Christ; we are a tree rooted in the love of God, by the grace of Jesus Christ. Our sap is the grace of His Spirit which fills us and nourishes us. By the sap of His Spirit we grow in the knowledge of Christ. We grow in Him, upwards toward heaven with all of our desires. We are the trees of Jesus Christ our Lord; we are trees of grace, we are trees of righteousness, we are trees that bring forth good fruit by the goodness of Christ in us.
Our spirit, by the innate desire placed in us by God, hungers for something more than just our mere existence. We desperately thirst for our meaning and purpose in life. In Christ we can partake of the tree of life as our source for knowledge, wisdom, intellectual development and satisfaction in our soul, mind, body and spirit.
In Heaven even the leaves of the trees bring nourishment and healing and the meaning is, that we who dwell there have been healed of our physical and spiritual infirmities, and had been made to live forever.
Sin pays those who serve it by punishing them with death, and the death in payment they receive is the utter destruction of the body, spirit and the soul. This is the description of a dead tree; no nourishment, no life, no shelter, no home, nothing left but death.
In Christ we are offered some much more….We are given the Tree of Life, both now and in the hereafter. In Christ we become part of the Tree of Life, grafted in by the Grace of our Lord and nourished by the sap of His Spirit. So what kind of tree you want to be, a dead one, or part of the Tree of Life? Choose Christ and choose LIFE!
The righteous will flourish like a palm tree,
They will grow like a cedar of Lebanon;
Planted in the house of the Lord,
They will flourish in the courts of our God.
They will still bear fruit in old age,
They will stay fresh and green,
Proclaiming, “The Lord is upright;
He is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in Him.”