Shabbat shalom all,
As we continue to stay in our Master, יהושע Messiah, through our loving-commitment in guarding to do all He has commanded us, we have the full assurance that He will stay in us, enabling us to bear much fruit. All through Scripture we are given repeated metaphoric pictures of trees and their fruit, that can either relate to the life of one who is a true servant of the Most High, or to one who is not! We are clearly told that each tree is known by its own fruit! Being firmly grafted into יהושע Messiah, and firmly planted in Him, we are to guard our lives from being cut off, by walking in and bearing the peaceable fruit of righteousness; and Scripture is very clear on what righteousness is for us:
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 6:25 “And it is righteousness for us when we guard to do all this command before יהוה our Elohim, as He has commanded us.”
When יהושע Messiah came, He proclaimed the clear Besorah of His mission as outlined in Yeshayahu/Isaiah 61 – for He came to bind up the broken-hearted, proclaim release to prisoners , proclaim the acceptable year of יהוה. This Messiah read from the scroll of Yeshayahu and He stopped midway and rolled up the scroll and gave it back. That which He did not read was the purpose for His first coming… for when He comes again the rest of Yeshayahu/Isaiah 61 will be fulfilled, when He comes in the day of the vengeance of our Elohim, and comfort all who mourn. In verse 3 we are given the sure promise of those who guard His Word:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 61:3 “to appoint unto those who mourn in Tsiyon: to give them embellishment for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. And they shall be called trees of righteousness, a planting of יהוה, to be adorned.”
What I want to highlight here, for purposes of tonight’s message is that we shall be called ‘trees of righteousness, a planting of YHWH, to be adorned’! In a message tonight called, “TREES OF RIGHTEOUSNESS!”, I would like to dig a little deeper into the picture of us being rooted in, and built up in our Master יהושע Messiah, and assess whether or not we are in fact bearing the true fruit of righteousness that we have been called to do! To do this I will be taking a closer look at the Terebinth tree that we often see in Scripture and learn from the various locations that are attached to the Terebinth, and their locations and events that took place near or by them.
The word ‘terebinth’ is used in the ISR Scriptures 1998 translation 23 times, being translated from 3 different Hebrew words that have very similar meaning. The first times that we find the word ‘terebinth’ is in:
Berěshith/Genesis 12:6 “And Aḇram passed through the land to the place of Sheḵem, as far as the terebinth tree of Moreh. At that time the Kenaʽanites were in the land.”
This is translated as ‘terebinth’ 9 times from the Hebrew word אֵלוֹן eylon – Strong’s H436 which means, ‘terebinth, oak, mighty’, which is prolonged from אַיִל ayil – Strong’s H352 which means, ‘terebinth, chief, pillar, door post, ram’.
The other word that is translated as ‘terebinth’ 13 times is אֵלָה eylah – Strong’s H424 which also means, ‘terebinth, oak’ and is the feminine of אַיִל ayil. While some may debate whether these words mean, terebinth or oak, what we recognise from Scripture is that these Hebrew words give clear reference to a very strong and very durable tree, that has a sturdy structure as well as an extensive root system that enables the tree to remain green, even during a drought! This strong tree is known to grow up to 12m high and due to its root system can sprout up from a stump after having been cut down which, as we will see, is used as a picture in Scripture!
In Yeshayahu/Isaiah 61:3, as quoted above, the Hebrew word translated as ‘trees’ is אַיִל ayil – Strong’s H352, and the Hebrew word translated as ‘righteousness’ is צֶדֶק tseḏeq – Strong’s H6664 which means, ‘righteous, just, righteousness’. The word translated as ‘planting’ is מַטָּע matta – Strong’s H4302 which means, ‘a place or act of planting, plantation, where it was planted’, and comes from the root verb נָטַע nata – Strong’s H5193 which means, ‘to plant, establish, fix, fasten’. When Messiah comes again and His reign is established here in earth, we who are in Him, shall be firmly planted and called trees of righteousness! As ambassadors of the Kingdom to come, we recognise how we are to be firmly planted in His word as strong trees of righteousness. In Scripture we find many agricultural word pictures that are used to describe man, and Dawiḏ tells us what the faithful, who meditate on the Torah day and night, will be like:
Tehillim/Psalm 1:3 “For he shall be as a tree planted by the rivers of water, that yields its fruit in its season, and whose leaf does not wither, and whatever he does prospers.”
In this verse the Hebrew word translated as ‘tree’ is עֵץ ets – Strong’s H6086 meaning, ‘trees, wood , timber, staff’, which is primarily the basic term in Scripture for trees and wood products. While this is the most common word for trees, we see how the picture or reference to man, as metaphorically referred to as trees, gives us insight into how we, as righteous trees in the field of the world, ought to be praising Elohim and bringing esteem to Him in all we do:
Tehillim/Psalm 96:12-13 “Let the field exult, and all that is in it. Let all the trees of the forest then shout for joy, 13 at the presence of יהוה. For He shall come, for He shall come to judge the earth. He judges the world in righteousness, and the peoples with His truth.”
Tehillim/Psalm 104:16 “The trees of יהוה are satisfied, The cedars of Leḇanon which He planted”
Wisdom is a tree of life to those who cling to her:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 3:18 “She is a tree of life to those taking hold of her, and blessed are all who retain her.”
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 11:30 “The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he who is winning lives is wise.”
The goal of our faith is the deliverance of lives and as we walk in righteousness, we are able to bear the fruit of winning the lost, as we proclaim and present to them, through our own lives, pure and true righteousness and obedience to the Word!
The Hebrew word used here for ‘planted’ is שָׁתַל shathal- Strong’s H8362 which means, ‘to transplant, planted’, which in itself carries a great picture for us in understanding the great and mighty work of our Master, who ‘transplants’ us into His Pure root, after having been far off due to sin! This word is used 10 times in Scripture, and once again pictures for us the effect of being firmly rooted and grounded in love, which is being rooted in Messiah and guarding to do all He commands as a pure expression of our love for Him!
Tehillim/Psalm 92:13 “Those who are planted in the House of יהוה flourish in the courts of our Elohim.”
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 17:7-8 “Blessed is the man who trusts in יהוה, and whose trust is יהוה. 8 “For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, which spreads out its roots by the river, and does not see when heat comes. And his leaf shall be green, and in the year of drought he is not anxious, nor does he cease from yielding fruit.”
Our continued trust in יהוה causes us to be ‘transplanted’ into His satisfying root system, and be able to sustain the pressures of the heat of trials that blow across our lives!
Yisra’ĕl was planted in a good land, and positioned to bear much fruit and shine the light of the Truth of Elohim to the nations, yet they failed to do this:
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 17:8 “It was planted in a good field by many waters, to bring forth branches, and to bear fruit, to be a splendid vine.”
This was part of a stern rebuke to a rebellious House that had neglected to stay rooted in love!
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 17:10 “See, it is planted, is it going to thrive? Would it not utterly wither when the east wind touches it – wither in the beds where it grows?”
In יהוה’s loving-commitment to His Covenant, He promises to ‘transplant’ a remnant of the rebellious House that withered under the heat of persecutions, temptations and trials:
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 17:22-23 “Thus said the Master יהוה, “And I shall take of the top of the highest cedar and set it out. And I Myself shall pluck off a tender one from the topmost of its young twigs, and plant it on a high and lofty mountain. 23 On the mountain height of Yisra’ĕl I plant it. And it shall bring forth branches, and bear fruit, and become a big cedar. And under it shall dwell birds of every sort, in the shadow of its branches they shall dwell.”
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 19:10 “Your mother was like a vine in your vineyard, planted by the waters, a bearer of fruit and branching, because of many waters.”
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 19:13 “And now she is planted in the wilderness, in a dry and thirsty land.”
A nation who had been delivered from bondage out of Mitsrayim, and planted in a good land, rebelled and as a result were plucked out and planted in the Wilderness!
What we can learn from these passages I have mentioned is that we must do our utmost in ensuring that we continue to meditate on the Torah of Elohim, day and night, and walk not in wrong counsels, as we guard to do all He commands, lest we find ourselves being cut off due to unrighteousness and compromise.
Mattithyahu/Matthew 15:13 “But He answering, said, “Every plant which My heavenly Father has not planted shall be uprooted.”
This was in response to the hypocritical Pharisees who accused the talmidim (disciples) of Messiah of breaking the traditions of the elders and not washing their hands before eating! יהושע was making it clear here that those who hold fast to traditions and forsake the commands of Elohim are those who put on an outward show and draw near to Elohim with their lips, yet their hearts are far from Him, and teach as teachings the commands of men. These hypocrites are not the righteous ones, and they will be uprooted!
The picture of being firmly rooted trees is a vital and very practical lesson for us to understand in guarding our obedience to Elohim. I would now like us to look a little deeper at the Hebrew words that I have already mentioned, and are translated as ‘terebinth’ or ‘oak’, in order to help us recognise how we are to be true trees of righteousness, as we look at the locations of these specifically mentioned Terebinth trees:
I have already mentioned the first reference to a terebinth tree, which was in Berěshith/Genesis 12:6.
This was where יהוה appeared to Aḇram! יהוה physically made Himself visible to Aḇram at this terebinth tree, which was at ‘Moreh’ – מוֹרֶה Moreh – Strong’s H4176 means, ‘teacher’, and it was here at this Mighty Tree that Aḇram met His Teacher :
Iyoḇ/Job 36:22 “See, Ěl is exalted by His power; who is a Teacher like Him?”
The term ‘Moreh’ is used 3 times in Scripture; the other times we see this word being used is when Mosheh was giving reference to Yisra’ĕl of this very location where Aḇram had met יהוה, as a marker of where they would proclaim the blessing and curses on Mount Gerizim and Ěyḇal, when they had crossed the Yardĕn! (Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 11:30). This also can remind us that we, who have ‘crossed over’, and understand the clear blessings and curses of Scripture will keep our eyes on our Good Teacher and Master, יהושע Messiah:
Yoḥanan/John 13:13 “You call me Teacher and Master, and you say well, for I am.”
The 3rd time we see this word מוֹרֶה Moreh being used is in Shophetim/Judges 7:1, when Giḏ’on was encamped at the
fountain of Ḥaroḏ, while Miḏyan was on the north of them, by the hill of Moreh. Ḥaroḏ comes from the root word חָרַד ḥarad – Strong’s H2729 which means, ‘trembling, to be terrified, frightened, afraid’. This in itself carries a great encouragement for us, especially when we understand the full story of Giḏ’on, who overcame huge terrifying obstacles and frightening enemies, as he fixed his eyes and trust on יהוה. Here we recognise that in the face of danger and terrifying circumstances, which in Scripture is often represented as coming from the north, we are able to face the battles and struggles as long as we have the hill of Moreh in our sights – meaning that we have our eyes on our Mighty Teacher and His clear instructions that gives us confidence and faith to stand and fight the good fight of faith!
We have a Teacher of Righteousness – and as good, faithful students we must take careful heed to hear, guard and do all He teaches us through His Word – then we will be equipped to face the tough battles in life!
The second place we see a reference being made to a ‘terebinth tree’ is at מַמְרֵא Mamrĕ – Strong’s H4471 which means, ‘strength or fatness’. This word is used 10 times and was the location where Aḇram moved to and dwelt by the terebinth trees of Mamrĕ, which was in Ḥeḇron, and it was here that he also built an altar to יהוה. Mamrĕ was an Ammonite who had made a covenant with Aḇram. It was here that we see in Berěshith/Genesis 18:1 that יהוה once again physically made Himself visible and appeared to Aḇraham. Aḇraham was ‘sitting’ at the ‘tent door’ of his tent by the terebinth trees of Mamrĕ; and the root word used for ‘sitting’ is יָשַׁב yashaḇ – Strong’s H3427 meaning, ‘sit, dwell, remain, abide, inhabit, sitting still’ and a modern word derived from this word, which is translated as ‘school’, is ‘yeshiva’. And ‘sitting/ dwelling’ in the Hebraic mind-set is an idiom for learning; and it is at the Master’s Feet that we come and sit and drink of His Pure and Clear Living Water and get great clarity and insight and strength to sojourn with joy! The idea of sitting in the Hebrew mind-set is to learn, and not to simply sit and vegetate, but rather sit and pay attention to the instructions of their teacher. Aḇraham is clearly pictured for us as a great example of a man who meditated on the Word day and night and was so focused on the Master יהוה, making himself readily available for יהוה to make Himself visible to His faithful servant and friend! It was here that Aḇraham ate a meal with יהוה and two Messengers, just before judgement over Seḏom and Amorah was passed and delivered!
This location also gives us great insight in understanding our need to be attentive students of our Mighty Teacher, יהושע Messiah, and love to come together on His Sabbaths, in order to sit and learn and be strengthened in His Word that leads us in righteousness, and enjoy the fellowship of a good meal too! It is when we gather, as diligent talmidim, that He makes Himself visible to us through His Word and strengthens us as we grow in our knowledge and understanding of who He is.
This was also the place where Yitsḥaq dwelt, when Ya’aqob came to him before he died at 180 years of age. (Berěshith/Genesis 35:27-28)
Moreh = Teacher and Mamrĕ = Strength – for it is as we submit to our Good Teacher and fix our eyes on Him and submit to hearing, guarding and doing His Word, that we are equipped to stand and fight, as His joy strengthens us and renews us!
The third location that we see in Scripture being ‘marked’ by a ‘terebinth tree’ is צַעֲנַנִּים Tsa’ananniym – Strong’s H6815 which means, ‘removings’, and is the plural of the word צָעַן tsa’an – Strong’s H6813 which means, ‘to wander, travel, taken down’.
It is in Yehoshua/Joshua 19:33 where we are told that this place formed part of the borders of Naphtali – נַפְתָּלִי – Strong’s H5321 – whose name means, ‘wrestling’. This place is also used in Shophetim/Judges 4:11 where Ḥeḇer, of the children of the father-in-law of Mosheh, had come to after separating himself from the Qĕynites, before Baraq and Deborah went up and destroyed Sisera. This terebinth at צַעֲנַנִּים Tsa’ananniym was beside קֶדֶשׁ Qedesh – Strong’s H6843 which means, ‘set-apart place’. What we can learn from this terebinth tree location is that, we who have been called out of darkness and are a set-apart people of Elohim, will recognise how we have all wrestled with the removal of our old ways, and all the vain inherited traditions and lies. Therefore, as we live set-apart lives, we must remove all falsehood and compromise, in order to truly live set-apart lives unto our Mighty Teacher and Master!
The 4th place we find a terebinth tree being mentioned as a key marker or location is at שְׁכֶם Sheḵem – Strong’s H7927 which means, ‘back or shoulder’. It was here at Sheḵem that Ya’aqoḇ dug a well – the well where יהושע met the Shomeroni woman and so opened the door for the return of the lost sheep of Yisra’ĕl!
It was also here at the terebinth at Sheḵem that the masters of Sheḵem set up Aḇimeleḵ, the son of Giḏ’on, as their king, after he had killed his 70 brothers! (Shophetim/Judges 9:6).
It was also here at Sheḵem that Ya’aqob buried the idols under the terebinth tree. A very eventful place indeed, one that typically presents to us the clear choice of who we will serve and follow. יהושע Messiah is our Master, Teacher and King and the rule is on His shoulders, yet Sheḵem teaches us that there is always a false system and rule that many sadly choose to follow. After Aḇimeleḵ was set up as king of Sheḵem, Yotham went and proclaimed a clear parable of trees from Mount Gerizim as a witness against the leaders at Sheḵem. Aḇimeleḵ ruled Yisra’ĕl for 3 years, after which he was killed when a woman dropped an upper millstone on his head and crushed his skull. He then asked his armour bearer to kill him, lest it would be said a woman killed him – and so Elohim repaid Aḇimeleḵ for the evil of killing the 70 sons of Giḏ’on. Why I am sharing this with you is simply to show how the enemy will certainly have a way of getting many to follow him, and with the 70 sons of Giḏ’on being killed by him, we are given a picture of how the enemy has done his utmost to defile the nations, yet shall be destroyed at the end. 70 is a significant number in representing the fullness of the nations, as we are reminded that generations of Noaḥ’s sons, after the flood, were 70 in number; and we are also reminded how it was 70 elders who ate a meal on Mount Sinai with יהוה when the Covenant was given to the chosen and called out nation, who were to be a light to the nations. יהושע Messiah also sent out the 70 taught ones, two by two, ahead of Him into every city and place where He was about to go, so that they would ‘prepare the way’ as they went to go and proclaim the Besorah of His Kingdom, which is another picture of how we as faithful talmidim and pure trees of righteousness, are called to go and prepare the way for His soon return, and proclaim the Besorah of His Kingdom!
We must choose to follow the Righteous King, by guarding His Word and bearing each other’s burdens on our shoulders, and so fulfil the Torah!
There was another ‘terebinth tree’ in Sheḵem that is mentioned in Shophetim/Judges 9:37, and was a place where witchcraft was performed and sought after. In the Scriptures we are told that the people were coming from the ‘Diviners terebinth tree’. The Hebrew word for ‘diviners’ is מְעוֹנְנִים –‘meon’niym’ – which is the plural of the word עָנַן anan – H6049 meaning ‘fortune telling, soothsaying, magicians, practising witchcraft’ as well as ‘to make something appear or to cloud over and act covertly and observe times of witchcraft’.
This is a lesson for us that we are to not allow any form of witchcraft or magic in our lives, for as we live in the world we are not of the world and must not follow after the world’s ways, as this has not been appointed for us:
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 18:13-14 “Be perfect before יהוה your Elohim, 14 for these nations whom you are possessing do listen to those using magic and to diviners. But as for you, יהוה your Elohim has not appointed such for you.”
Miḵah/Micah 5:12 “And I shall cut off witchcrafts out of your hand, and let you have no magicians.”
The 5th site I want to highlight for you in terms of the location of a terebinth tree being mentioned is at Ophrah:
Shophetim/Judges 6:11 “And the Messenger of יהוה came and sat under the terebinth tree which was in Ophrah, which belonged to Yo’ash the Aḇiʽezerite, while his son Giḏ’on threshed wheat in the winepress, to hide it from the eyes of the Miḏyanites.”
גִּדְעוֹן Giḏ’on – Strong’s H1439 means, ‘hewer, one who chops down’, and he certainly was a very courageous man who chopped down and destroyed the abominable Asherah pole and altar of Ba’al that his father had.
It was here at the terebinth tree in Ophrah, where Giḏ’on lived, that the Messenger of יהוה appeared to Giḏ’on and called him a mighty brave one. Giḏ’on, of course, engaged in a discussion with the Messenger of יהוה, and discussed his doubts and fears, and challenged Him by asking that if יהוה was with them, then why were bad things happening to them, as they had been suffering under the oppression of the Miḏyanites. Giḏ’on is told to go in his strength, for he would save Yisra’ĕl, and he responds with the fact that he was just a small guy from Menashsheh, and was the least in his father’s house. With these physical facts, in his own eyes, of him being the smallest in his father’s house, he asked the Messenger of יהוה how he was to or with what he would save Yisra’ĕl – and the answer was very simple and yet very clear – He would do so because יהוה was with him!!! Because יהוה was with him he would destroy the Miḏyanites, as one man! This is a very practical truth we all need to hear amidst the most daunting circumstances in our lives!!! If יהוה is with us, then we have the full assurance of walking in victory! Giḏ’on still finding this a little hard to take in, he asks for a sign and then proceeds to prepare an offering for יהוה. Giḏ’on was told to put the meat and bread on the rock and pour out the broth, which he did, and the Messenger of יהוה touched the meat and unleavened bread with His staff and fire went up from out of the rock and consumed the offering, and the Messenger of יהוה went from his sight. In total awe of having seen the Messenger of יהוה face to face, he feared that he would die, and he was told to take courage for he would not die; and then Giḏ’on built an altar there and called it יהוה Shalom. This was certainly a mighty event that took place under a terebinth tree! We can see great picture of Pěsaḥ being given here, through the offering that he prepared and set on the rock, and we are also able to see how we too can be filled with the Shalom of יהוה, as He lifts His face up to us and gives us His Shalom when we prepare our hearts to seek Him and walk in His clear word, accepting His work of redemption and guard to keep his Appointed Times as instructed. The Shalom of יהוה enables us to stand firm in the face of great dangers, as we offer up our lives as a daily living sacrifice and give Him our all – for then we too would be strong and courageous to chop down those things that are abominable in יהוה’s eyes – and have the courage to tear down the lies and vain traditions of our fathers!
The 6th location of a terebinth tree that I want to mention is at תָּבוֹר Taḇor – Strong’s H8396 which means, ‘mound’.
Shemuʼěl Aleph/1 Samuel 10:3 “And you shall pass on from there, and beyond, and shall come to the terebinth tree of Taḇor. And three men going up to Elohim at Bĕyth Ěl shall find you there, one bearing three young goats, another bearing three loaves of bread, and another bearing a skin of wine.”
After having anointed Sha’ul as king, Shemuʼĕl told Sha’ul that he would be met at the terebinth tree by three men who were on their way to Bĕyth Ĕl, and he was to receive from them 3 goats, 3 loaves of bread and wine – which is another picture of the cycles of the Feasts of יהוה, that confirms our calling and identity in our True King! This was a confirmation of the prophesy of Shemuʼěl to Sha’ul, and it was after this event that Sha’ul received the Spirit of Elohim. Later we know that the Spirit departed from Sha’ul because of his rebellion and disobedience. This location can therefore clearly picture for us the vital need for us to be guarding the Sabbaths and Feasts of יהוה, lest we find ourselves without His Spirit dwelling in us! With the 3 men having 3 goats, 3 loaves of bread and a skin if wine, we are quickly reminded how the metaphoric picture behind these 3 men and their gifts of provision point us toward the ‘3 times a year’ every male was to go up to Yerushalayim and perform the Festivals of יהוה! This reminds us how important it is for us, in guarding the sure promise of the hope we have in Messiah, that we are to keep His Feasts with joy! The location of this terebinth tree also gives us the assurance of the providence of יהוה and the urgency with which we must guard His Appointed Times and not take our set-apart calling for granted.
In Scripture we also are told that Aḇshalom’s head got caught in a great terebinth tree, and Yo’aḇ thrust 3 spears through his heart while he was still hanging alive in the terebinth tree (Shemuʼěl Bět/2 Samuel 18)
We are also told of the young prophet who had gone and delivered a strong message of rebuke to Yaroḇ’am, and then went on his way as instructed by Elohim. He stopped off and rested under a terebinth tree on his way home, where he was enticed into breaking the clear instructions of Elohim, through the trickery of twisted words of a false prophet, which ultimately got him to be mauled by a lion! (Melaḵim Aleph/1 Kings 13) – for more on this event please see my sermon called, “A KING, 2 PROPHETS, A LION AND A DONKEY!” (under sermons 2013 on our website)
What we can learn from this Terebinth tree is that we must be sober and alert, for the enemy is like a roaring lion seeking who he can devour! This young prophet was tired and weary and had stopped to rest under a terebinth tree; and here we can be cautioned in regards to our ‘resting’ in our Master! When we are tired and weary, that is when we need to be on the highest alert, and not neglect our ‘entering into the true rest of our Master’, as we do not neglect the gathering of the set-apart ones as some are in the habit of doing, due to weariness and tiredness! When we are tired and weary we must do our utmost to be gathering, lest we find ourselves being led astray in a moment of weakness!
We are called to be set-apart and planted as tree of righteousness whose leaves do not fade when the heat comes. When compromise and disobedience creeps in, the tree begins to fade as the fruit of righteousness begins to becomes less and less, until there is not fruit – and this was the rebuke given to a rebellious Yisra’ĕl in:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 1:30 “For you shall be as a terebinth whose leaf fades, and as a garden that has no water.”
Compromise and any form of idol worship will cause the source of your strength to fade and be proven wrong when the heat comes! The sad tragedy is that for so many who do not realise that they are fading because the heat has not come, will find that when the heat comes, it will be too late to repent!
יהוה does give us assurance of a faithful remnant that shall return like a terebinth that has been cut down, with only a stump that remains – for the set-apart seed is its stump – and Messiah has restored life to the root!
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 6:13 “But still, there is a tenth part in it, and it shall again be for a burning, like a terebinth tree and like an oak, whose stump remains when it is cut down. The set-apart seed is its stump!”
Trees were often places of significance to the ways and practices of the abominable worship rites of the nations and יהוה makes it clear that all idol worship will be destroyed! Today the world worships the Christmas tree – and this too will be destroyed:
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 6:13 “And you shall know that I am יהוה, when their slain are among their idols all around their altars, on every high hill, on all the mountaintops, under every green tree, and under every thick oak, wherever they offered sweet incense to all their idols.”
Sadly we find that many find comfort in the ‘shade’ of their false trees, and in the process are simply whoring after idols:
Hoshěa/Hosea 4:13 “They slaughter on the mountaintops, and burn incense on the hills, under oak and poplars and terebinth, because its shade is good. Therefore your daughters commit whoring, and your brides commit adultery.”
While we recognise some very significant events that take place under or around a terebinth tree, we also recognise that there is also the clear danger of following after strange mighty ones, which are not mighty ones at all, yet through traditions and lies, have caused many to seek their refuge, strength and shelter under the trees of falsehood, as they are rooted in nothing more than shallow dogmas of man, that will prove false when the heat of the wrath of יהוה comes!
When the fire of His wrath does come, those who are truly planted in יהושע Messiah and remain in Him, will find their continued strength from Him and their leaves and covering will not fade when His heat comes upon the sons of disobedience!
As we consider the analogy of trees in Scripture – let me ask you if you have truly been ‘transplanted’ by Elohim, having been grafted in by the Blood of Messiah, and are staying in Him to be a true ‘TREE OF RIGHTEOSUNESS’ that is daily being adored by His beautiful Word? Perhaps you have been facing some fierce and seemingly life threating battles of late – then be like Giḏ’on and present yourselves as a daily living sacrifice, and never take your eyes off of our Good Teacher and King –for then your leaf will never fade – you mighty brave one!
יהוה bless you and guard you; יהוה make His face shine upon you and show you favour; יהוה lift up His face to you and give you Shalom!