MARCH 16, 2006

THE TREE OF LIFE (Genesis/Ezekiel/Revelation)

A TREE OF LIFE (Proverbs)

Gen. 2:9  Out of the ground the LORD God made to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food, THE TREE OF LIFE also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.”

Gen. 3:22  “Then the LORD God said, ‘See, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might reach out his hand and take also from THE TREE OF LIFE, and eat, and live forever’”

Gen. 3:24  “He drove out the man; and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim, and a sword flaming and turning to guard the way to THE TREE OF LIFE.”

Prov. 3:13-18  “Happy are those who find wisdom, and those who get understanding, for her income is better than silver, and her revenue better than gold.  She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you desire can compare with her.  Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor.  Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.  She is A TREE OF LIFE to those who lay hold of her; those who hold her fast are called happy.”

Prov. 11:30  “The fruit (i.e. reward, result) of the righteous  is A TREE OF LIFE, but violence takes lives away.”

Prov. 13:12  “Hope deferred (i.e. expectation that drags on and on) makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is A TREE OF LIFE.” (see Prov. 11:23).

Prov. 15:4  “A gentle tongue is A TREE OF LIFE, (see Prov. 12:18) but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.”

Rev. 2:7  “Let anyone who has an ear listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches. To everyone who conquers, I will give permission to eat from THE TREE OF LIFE that is in the paradise of God.”

Rev. 22:2  “…through the middle of the street of the city. On either side of the river is THE TREE OF LIFE with its twelve kinds of fruit, producing its fruit each month; and the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations.”  See also Ezekiel. 47:12

Rev. 22:14 “Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they will have the right to THE TREE OF LIFE and may enter the city by the gates.”

Rev. 22:19  “…if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away that person’s share in THE TREE OF LIFE and in the holy city, which are described in this book.”

In the Bible we find that ‘tree of life’ appears in three books Genesis, Proverbs and Revelation.  In Genesis and Revelation it is called the tree of life.  In Proverbs it is called a tree of life.  The book of Ezekiel does not actually mention the tree of life, but describes the trees that grow beside the river of life in terms similar to those used by John in the book of Revelation.

THE TREE OF LIFE (Genesis/Ezekiel/Revelation)

In the Revelation (and in Ezekiel) we learn that the tree of life produces a different kind of fruit each month, and its leaves are medicine for healing.  Most likely it was that way in the Garden of Eden, but we can’t tell from Scripture.  It is interesting to note that sinful humans could eat of the tree of life, IF THEY WERE ALLOWED TO.  In Genesis we are told that if Adam were to eat of it he would live forever, even though he was a sinner (Gen. 3:22).  However, in the new earth (new Jerusalem) only overcomers will be able to partake of the tree of lifethose who have washed their robes in the blood of the lamb. (Rev. 2:7 and 22:14)

A TREE OF LIFE (Proverbs)

It is a sustainer of long life.

It is the result of righteousness

It is Wisdom

It is kind, wholesome words from our mouths

It is desire fulfilled

When the Bible mentions the tree of life it is talking about the one in paradise, or the new earth, which will extend “forever” the days of God’s children.  When it mentions a tree of life it is talking about something available to us in this life, which will also extend our days, although not forever.

How do you find the “trees of life” in this life?

Acquire true Wisdom (Read Prov. 2:1-15)

Wash your robe (Rev. 7:14)

Be a conqueror (Rev. 12:11)

Speak words that build up, not words that tear down (Matt. 12:37, Ps. 9:11, Prov. 14:5)

THE tree of life is used to sustain the life of someone who might otherwise die (i.e., a sinner).  The books of Revelation and Ezekiel say that its leaves provide medicine for the healing of the nations.  Since all sickness is caused by sin it is possible that sin may exist or occur in the New Jerusalem.  Why would medicine be needed unless there were sickness to overcome?  Most likely, individuals will not actively sin in the new earth, but the effects of past sins will take time to be purged from their consciousness.  The goodness (glory) of God over time will supplant whatever has made man dwell on anything other than Him and His love.  Surely that is why the process will take up to 1,000 years (the Millennium).  Notice that Adam and Eve had not partaken of the tree of life.  Why not?  Probably because they had no need towithout sin they could expect to live forever).

It is worth wondering whether the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil are actually separate trees.  I know that in our compartmental structured thinking they appear to be.  However, consider this… they were both located in the center of the garden.  Could it be that they are one and the same tree, but that eating results in either death or life, depending on the awareness of the heart/mind that partakes?  After all, did not Jesus say to followers of the law, “If you were blind, you would have no sin; but since you say, ‘We see,’ your sin remains? (John 9:41) (NASB)  Perhaps the tree of life became the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (leading to death) because Eve’s natural eyes were ‘opened.’   Hm-m-m-m…














THE TREE of LIFE [E. M. “Ed” Dupas] 3-16-06          1


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