Psa 1:3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivulets of water that brings forth its fruit in its seasons, and its leaf shall not wither, and all which he does shall be blessed.
There are 191 references of the word “tree” in the bible.
Of these references, there are many different contexts and applications that we can look at.
Life Cycle of A TREE.
What is the goal of a tree?… to bear fruit.
In the tree of Christianity, your goal is to bear good fruit so that others can eat, CHRISTIANITY IS NOT ABOUT YOU GETTING YOUR BLESSING.
It is about you blessing others by being used by God. To be surrendered as a living sacrifice. (Rom 8:1)
We can use many references such as vessels like pots and treasure in earthen vessels… but more than anything Trees were used.
Why were trees used?
Simply because for most of the time that the bible was written, agriculture was a major part of the culture and one of the cheif sources of income. It should be noted that trees were integral in the garden and the fall of man.. .so their history and heritage in the bible is important.
In this series of messages we will go through the life cycle of a physical tree and see how this marvel of nature applies to our lives as christians.
THE SEED – SAPLING
A tree’s life cycle begins with germination. An adult tree will drop a seed to the ground, usually in fall or winter, and the seed will lie dormant until spring. When the conditions are right, the dormant seed will start to receive warmth, water, sunlight and oxygen. This will spark the growth of the baby tree embryo and begin its life cycle.
To become a christian a seed has to be first planted in your life. This is why the gospel has to be preached, when it is preached it falls on the hearts of men and leaves a seed that once the spirit wills and the heart is not hardened the person makes a decision to follow Christ by faith in him alone because of what they have heard.
A simple example of this is.
Rom 10:14 How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without preaching?
So some of us have seeds in our life and we have not removed the hardness from our hearts. So when you see someone in church for a long time and they are not making any decisons to follow Christ, their heart is simply hardened to the gospel and the seed cannot germinate.
How do we deal with a hardened heart? How does it get softened?
By the spirit of God.
When you are constantly exposed to situations where the spirit of God is prevalent you expose yourself to the power of the spirit. YOU DO NOT HAVE A SAY IN WHEN THE SPIRIT MOVES.
BUT YOU DO HAVE A SAY IN WHERE YOU PLACE YOURSELF….. is it in places where the spirit is moving or where Satan is working?
To people with children, friends, family and whatnot who have hardened hearts….. keep exposing them to places where the spirit is moving and keep praying, trust in God to move on their hearts.
There are a lot of things you cannot control, but there are things you can in terms of exposure.
I am speaking from a purely theoretical perspective, but from a sound biblical perspective.
What better way to expose them to GOD than THROUGH YOURSELF?!!!!
1Co 6:19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit in you, whom you have of God? And you are not your own,
When I was talking about exposing people to places where the spirit is moving, you were probably thinking about Sunday School, and Bible study and prayer meeting………… NO I WAS TALKING ABOUT YOU.
GET THE SPIRIT MOVING IN YOUR LIFE AND THEN YOU WILL BE PUTTING THE PEOPLE YOU INTERACT WITH IN A POSITION TO ALSO RECIEVE FROM GOD……
BECAUSE CHRISTIANITY IS NOT ABOUT YOU…. JUST LIKE A TREE IS NOT ABOUT ITSELF……. as we go along the series of messages you will see what a tree is really there for. Remember Psalm 1:3
So the seed germinates and turns into a sapling.
The baby tree will sprout a root, which will instinctively seek out groundwater. If it finds it, the root will then become submerged in the earth. As it takes root, a stem will sprout up towards the sun, usually carrying the seed casing with it, up into the air. As it straightens up and grows upright, it will drop the protective casing and start its life as a seedling.
1Co 13:11 When I was an infant, I spoke as an infant, I thought as an infant, I reasoned as an infant. But when I became a man, I did away with the things of an infant.
The first thing the sapling starts to do is become rooted. Some of us been at the sapling stage for yearssss…… trying to become rooted. You know the amazing thing about the rooting process? At that point in time it is extremely difficlut for it to push those roots down and look for water, but it searches heavily and digs deeeppppp…… if it is not really set on doing it, it will never become rooted properly which can lead to many difficulties later.
Seedlings need extremely favorable conditions to survive to adulthood. Just a few too many days of dry conditions or sunlight can quickly kill a seedling.
Heb 10:25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.
They need water and nutrition externally, this could be a farmer who throws fertilizer, sades it, props it up, fumigates it and what not.
That is the role of the Church…. to nurture and bring these saplings to a tree where it can STAND ON IT’S OWN.
Sapling digs deep…. asks questions, seaches, deliberates, trusts finds water and FEEDS!!!
Problem with a sapling is that it takes alot of work, the ground must remain fertile.
For us, ever heard the phrase “rooted in the word?”
Yeah the reason a whole lot of us are still saplings is cuz we have stopped pushing our roots down and we get accustomed to the farmer (pastor/church) shading and tending. spraying fumigation (praying)… throwing fertilizer (breaking down the word for us)…..BUT WE DON’T PUSH OUR ROOTS DOWN!
After a while, that farmer is going to become frustrated and wonder if that tree will ever grow…. you know what is going to happen?
you will hear this scripture a lot in the series of messages.
Mat 3:10 And now also, the axe is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bring forth good fruit is cut down and cast into the fire.
Stay a sapling and see what happens…. remember you goal IS FRUIT!
How do you spread your roots down?……. You have to do it yourself, Get into your bible show the farmer that you are trying and the farmer will be more than willing to assist in the growth process. As you dig deeper you will have questions and concerns…. the most important thing in rooting yourslelf in SOUND DOCTRINE is not taking everything at face value….. cuz there are corrupt farmers (pastors) out there who will cause trees to bend how they want…..
But ROOTING YOURSELF IN SOUND DOCTRINE IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING AS A SAPLING.
That determines what direction the tree grows in.
Ras Shorty I has a song called “Change Your Attitude”…… it contains my favourite quote
“When de tree young and you bend it wrong, it hard to straighten when it old and strong”
False doctrine is alll around us….. ALLL AROUND US. The only way you can fight it is to get sound teaching… not lecturing eh… cuz lecturiing just talks to you…. TEACHING ALLOWS YOU TO ASK QUESTIONS AND UNDERSTAND….and when you do that, you GROW IN UNDERSTANDING….
We can’t count the amount of times the disciples asked questions of Jesus’ doctrine and he explained and they asked and he explained and they asked and he…. explained…..
That time Peter was a sapling…. but he grew into a HUGE TREE…….. (Read 1st and 2nd Peter) lol …. why cuz he pushed his roots down and did not just take shade and propping up from the farmer!
Eph 4:13 And this until we all come into the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a full-grown man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;
Eph 4:14 so that we no longer may be infants, tossed to and fro and carried about by every wind of doctrine, in the dishonesty of men, in cunning craftiness, to the wiles of deceit.
What is one of the most dangerous things to trees? THE WIND. ever see a hurricane uproot a tree? Yeah that is wind.
the goal is to get your roots as deep as possible so when the WIND OF FALSE DOCTRINIE blows you will be firmly rooted and grounded and WILL NOT BUDGE!
replace the word infants with saplings and you will see how any wind of doctring can toss you to and fro …. the only thing that can help that is being rooted…
If you are still a sapling you are just asking for wind to blow you down…..GROW UP!
Start to DIG…..so that you can grow into a propper tree and fulfill the purpose you have which is FRIUT……
Stay Tuned for the continuation next week.