Relationships through the tree

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October 18, 2016 by James Lindquist

Part Four of Four: The Fruit

I love Shari’s apple pie. They make the best pies, bar none. I go there on as many Wednesdays as I can because it is free pie night with the purchase of any entree. The apple is my favorite fruit, although I can say much about blackberry cobbler for I know someone who makes the best. . .but that’s off-point and down a rabbit hole. (But you still make the best blackberry cobbler and you know who you are.) Anyway,

The apple has gotten a bad rap especially when discussing Adam’s sin in the Garden of Eden. Actually, where this apple myth started, I really do not know because the Bible does not name the fruit as seen below. Man is the one that named the fruit.

However, the tree from which Adam ate and sinned was the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. This fits perfectly into our metaphor because the branches of our tree in question bear much fruit – good and evil. We basically make decisions to bear and eat from one of those two branches daily.

v16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
v17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. – [Genesis 2:16-17 KJV]

When Adam ate of this forbidden tree, physical life became terminal and man died spiritually and God separated man from Him, but no worries, redemption was in God’s plan. This is part number four of our four part series on relationships as told through a tree. Our metaphor says that if we are rooted in Christ, His strength is our strength, and we resolve that nothing will come between our relationships and marriages. Therefore, with Christ’s strength coupled with our resolve [1] the threefold cord becomes the trunk of our relationship tree.

However, life is a process and is nothing more than a span of allotted time where we make decisions, whether they are good or evil and this is life in a nutshell. Our decisions become the branches of our tree and as such, we are the products of our own decisions. Because of our free will [2], God will not intervene in that process [3], but if we commit our ways unto the Lord [4], He has a plan for each and every one of us [5], and our relationship/marriage will not easily break [6].

Throughout the top of our tree, there are many branches, all of which produce fruit. Some branches bear love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance [7], while others bear anger, jealousy, fear, regret, unbelief, doubt, impatience, disgust, sadness, contention, shame, pride, blame, accusation, disobedience, condemnation, bitterness, and so many more.

Did you notice anything about the fruit of our tree? There are many more evil branches (and many more evil than listed), than good branches. However, when the wind of temptation blows, which is the inherent sin nature of man [8], growth, demands that, we have to climb out on many branches to find and choose God’s fruit [9].

Therefore, the fruit of the Spirit (God’s fruit), which again is, love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance, is all that we need because. . . against such there is no law [10]. In addition, “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world [11].”

God made us in His image and as such we are spiritual beings and this natural existence is only temporary and temporal [12]. So, we want to bear the fruit of the Spirit (which is eternal) and not the fruit of the Serpent, which is the fruit of disobedience. We don’t just want to reach for the ‘sun and life’ as with the natural tree, but we want to reach for the ‘Son and life’ spiritually and eternally.

The fruit of which branches are you eating. . . and bearing? It’s your decision.
_______________________________________________

[1] Ecclesiastes 4:12
[2] Deuteronomy 30:19
[3] Proverbs 21:5; Isaiah 42:14; Ecclesiastes 9:10; Isaiah 48:18; Matthew 22:37
[4] Psalms 37:5; Proverbs 16:3
[5] Jeremiah 29:11
[6] Ecclesiastes 4:12
[7] Galatians 5:22, 23
[8] Jeremiah 17:9
[9] Joshua 24:15
[10] Galatians 5:23b
[11] 1 John 4:4 KJV
[12] 2 Corinthians 4:18

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