You Are Like The Cypress And The Myrtle.

Isaiah 55:10-13

10 “For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven,
And do not return there,
But water the earth,
And make it bring forth and bud,
That it may give seed to the sower
And bread to the eater,
11 So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth;
It shall not return to Me void,
But it shall accomplish what I please,
And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.

12 “For you shall go out with joy,
And be led out with peace;
The mountains and the hills
Shall break forth into singing before you,
And all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
13 Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress tree,
And instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree;
And it shall be to the Lord for a name,
For an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”

 
 

Spring is a beautiful time to get out in nature and enjoy God’s creation.  Trees are mentioned all throughout the Bible.  In Israel, the almond is among the first to flower.  This is most significant!

The Almond Tree.

Why is the almond tree is often mentioned in scripture?  Being the first to blossom after winter, it both speaks of resurrection and new life, but also reminds us of the miracles that the Lord has in store for us.  Just as the coldest, darkest winters always end, and the earth brings forth fruit, so too in our lives.  Even the darkest of days end and we see that God always has something fresh in store for us.

Study!
When God said, “Study to show thyself approved….” He wasn’t kidding.  In order to understand many things in the Bible, you really do have to study a wide range of subjects:  The botany of Israel and the forces that affect it, for example.  Even the land and customs teach us about Jesus!
(For more on this topic, follow the link below:  https://emmausroadministries.wordpress.com/2016/02/29/the-sea-of-galilee/

The Word Of God.

The opening passage begins with a reference to rain and snow. When they touch the ground it is watered and brings forth fruit.  That is so like God’s word, isn’t it?  Wherever it goes, whoever and whatever it touches, bears fruit.  The one who sows will have plenty of seed to plant–seed being the word of God.  It will grow and bud into mature wheat producing bread to nourish those who are hungry.

The Bread Of Life.

Bread is a picture of Jesus, the Bread of Life.  Feeding on Him and on His word causes us to “Go out {into the world} with joy,” and to be “Lead forth with peace.”
He was born in Bethlehem which means “House of Bread.”  When He was born, He was wrapped in swaddling clothes and laid in a carved stone manger.  A manger, of course, is feeding trough!  It’s a picture of feeding on Jesus, the Bread of Life.
When you have had your fill, your hunger satisfied, you are full of joy and peace.  You are restful, not stressed.  It is when you are in this restful state that the Holy Spirit able to lead you as you go through life.
Mountains, Hills, And Trees.

“…The mountains and the hills shall break forth into singing before you, And all the trees of the field shall clap their hands…”

These are pictures, first and foremost, of how lovely Jesus is.  As He is, so are we in this world.  Because we belong to Him, we are a blessing everywhere we go!  People are attracted to us.  Even the environment around us changes because Jesus lives in us. People even feel like singing when we are around!

Trees are made of wood.  Wood in the Bible typifies “Humanity.”  Take a look at tree branches sometime.  They are most often curved upward toward heaven as if in praise the Lord!  Even weeping willow branches are first curved up.
Church, you and I, like trees, always and everywhere need to “Lift up holy hands” in praise to the Lord.  But the trouble is, we’re the only “Wood” that often has our “Branches” down at our sides. Instead of looking up toward heaven, we are often looking down at the ground, dejected and depressed.  We can take a lesson from the trees and look up to praise the Lord!
(Crucifix Thorn)

The Thorn.
“Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress tree,”
The thorn tree is a picture of Jesus Who wore our crown of thorns so we would be blessed instead of cursed.  
Thorns are actually leaves that are wrapped so tightly they form a thorn for lack of water. The leaf does this to conserve moisture in dry, desert places.  What makes those “thorns” become “leaves” again is the “water” of the word of God.
If there are thorns, thistles, and briers in your life, the answer is, “Drench yourself in God’s word!”  Those prickly people who are a thorn in your side, that’s what they need:  A deep drought of the water of the word of God.  They most likely are unaware of how much they are loved by God!
The Cypress.

The Cypress tree is actually referring to the Fir tree; you know, the kind of tree you see everywhere in December.  We know it as the Christmas tree!

This was one of the chief trees of Lebanon (Isaiah 60:13); it’s boughs were wide and great… (Exekiel 31:8); and it was evergreen (Hosea 14:8).

(Cypress/Fir Tree.)

In 2 Samuel 6:5 we read: “David and all the house of Israel played before Yahweh with all manner of instruments made of fir wood.”
“Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress {fir} tree.”

The wood of the fir tree is very “sonorous,” as they say in the music trade, making it perfect for fashioning musical instruments.  That’s what you and I are, Church:  Musical instruments on which Jesus plays beautiful music for all the world to hear.  Because of Him, we go around with a song in our hearts!  In fact, we are a song going somewhere to happen.
Transformed By Beholding.
Whenever we get out of sorts or “Out of tune,” what can we do? Come back to Jesus and be tuned up again!  This is a perfect portrayal of the verse that says “WE ARE TRANSFORMED BY BEHOLDING JESUS.”
That does NOT mean going to Him to confess our sins and get cleansed.  No way!  Our sins were CLEANSED ONCE, for all time, the day we accepted Him as our Savior.
Much of the confusion in the Church in this matter comes from misunderstanding 1John 1:9.  This verse is in the “Perfect tense,” indicating it is a ONE-TIME, NEVER-TO-BE-REPEATED ACT OR EVENT.  IT IS A SALVATION VERSE.

We can, however, take our eyes off Jesus and turn toward the desert, as we walk through the muck and mire of this fallen world.  When we do that, problems seem way too big to handle…..until we turn back to The Problem Solver!  We continually need to wash the dust of this world off our feet with the water of His word.  That settles our hearts!

The fir tree, being an evergreen, is a picture of the eternal life we have in Jesus.  You’ve heard the saying: “Christians don’t die; we just relocate!”

The Brier And The Myrtle.
“And instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree;”

Briers are just what you’d expect them to be:  Prickly, rambling, scrubby little shrubs that cling to you as you walk through them.  They are annoying little things that are sometimes hard to pick off.  But if you don’t, they will and poke and irritate you, like the little annoyances of life.

But Jesus says He will replace that with the Myrtle.  The Myrtle tree is a beautiful, fragrant tree.  Jesus says instead of being like briers, we are like that!   This beautiful tree also has a lovely white flower with 5 delicate petals, the number of grace!

The Myrtle speaks of Jesus’ righteousness and purity as well as of our gift of righteousness by grace, which we received when we asked Jesus into our hearts!

(Myrtle tree)

Queen Esther.

Remember Esther after whom the book in the Bible is named?  That was not the name given to her by her parents.  It was her Babylonian name which means, “Star,” in their language.  For her people, that she certainly was!

In Hebrew, her name means something which speaks to why the Jewish people were sent away in exile.  To read all about it, you may follow the link below for the sad details:

https://emmausroadministries.wordpress.com/2017/03/09/esther-series-part-5-the-13th-of-adar/

Her parents named her, “Hadassah,” which means “Myrtle tree,” in Hebrew.  This was a tree of blessing that was used in the tabernacle as well as in the construction of most temporary shelters the Feast of Tabernacles.

Esther enters the King's court 2 jpg

Mary, the mother of Jesus, most likely became pregnant with Jesus on that first day of this feast.  To learn more about that topic, follow the link below and discover what the Real Story in the Stars is all about:  Jesus!

https://emmausroadministries.wordpress.com/2017/09/02/the-real-story-in-the-stars-christmas-series-part-1/

Esther, “Hadassah,” certainly was a blessing to her people when she saved them from total annihilation by the evil Haman. She is a picture of the Church so you know what that says about us?  We are myrtle trees to the world today!
(For more on the story of Esther, follow the link below:  https://emmausroadministries.wordpress.com/2017/02/28/hadassah-2/)
(Myrtle blossom)
What beautiful word pictures the Holy Spirit has once again painted for us!  We, the company of the blood-bought congregation, are truly special to Him.

We are like the cypress and the myrtle!

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