Devotional#11: 4 March 2017
“Like a Tree Planted Near Running Water.”
Christians seek to bear fruit out of our sincere love for Christ (Romans 6
In our last devotional we discussed each Christian’s calling to live a life of bearing fruit for God.
We also mentioned that shortly before baptizing Jesus in the Jordon River, John the Baptist exhorted the religious of his day to, “Bear fruit in keeping with repentance.” (Matthew 3:8
contains one of our favorite Biblical illustrations about bearing good fruit:
“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous; for the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.”
This Psalm paints a vivid picture of a worldly man who foolishly seeks out wisdom in the advice of those who have a great distain for God. It also dramatically illustrates the firm foundation enjoyed by those who meditate regularly upon the Word of God.
Chaff Versus Fruit
The Psalmist compares the scoffer, who shakes his fist at Biblical Wisdom, to the valueless waste of windblown chaff. Like dust in the wind, the unrighteous man is easily swayed by counsel obtained from the ever-changing opinions of sinful men.
Conversely, when a Christian’s standard of morality is firmly-planted in the life-giving Word of our Creator, he is rightly grounded in the immutable nature of God. Not only is God an eternally consistent foundation, but He promises His adopted children that they will bear good fruit in Him.
“So, every healthy tree bears good fruit… A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit… Thus you will recognize them by their fruits.”
“The righteous flourish like the palm tree… They are planted in the house of the Lord; they flourish in the courts of our God. They still bear fruit in old age; they are ever full of sap and green, to declare that the Lord is upright; he is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him.”
Psalm 1 certainly paints a picture that conveys the value of meditating daily on the Word of God. Particularly interesting is the image of a tree that bears fruit IN SEASON. We are reminded of Genesis 41, of Jeremiah 29, and James 1.In Genesis 41, Joseph remains imprisoned after several long years confined unjustly despite his relative innocence and his own prophetic dreams foretelling a fruitful future.
In the oft quoted Jeremiah 29, the Israelites are told that they will be slaves for 70 years before God fulfills his plans to prosper them once again as His chosen Nation.
James 1 describes God’s intentional use of time and trials to develop in us into more complete and steadfast believers… with matured faith that James later reminds us will lead to fruitful good works.
Share it with your Family!
Next time you see a tree, with or without fruit, why don’t you use it as an opportunity to talk to your family about how God has a plan for believers to bear fruit in Season according to His will and His own timeline. Remind each other that He wrote of our fruitfulness before we were born (Psalm 139), and He told us that if we believe in Him, meditate daily and His word, and remain rooted in His Wisdom, then we will be like trees planted next to the living water that only He can provide (John 7:38).If you enjoyed this devotional, please share it with your friends via email AND Social Media!
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