In the bible, vines (usually grape) and fig trees were emblematic of agricultural abundance and that abundance bespoke wealth. Many fig trees meant prosperity. The promised land was described in Deut. 8:8 as “a land of wheat and barley, and vines and fig-trees and pomegranates.” It was not described as a land flat and therefore ripe for land prospecting development. It was not described as a land full of silver and gold mines. It was not described a land of great cities producing a rich population. The prosperity that was promised was riches from a bountiful earth.
Remember, that after the Fall, Adam was cursed with toil, and that the land would not yield unless he toiled with sweat and labor. What was it like before the Fall when the curse will be released? I can’t wait to find out, and that is what the Bible’s prophecies promise.
“Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground,” (Genesis 3:17b-19b).
Doesn’t sitting under our own fig tree and our vine and sound relaxing? Refreshing? Cool? Like walking with God in the garden in the cool of the day. He used the vine and fruit metaphor to symbolize spiritual abundance.
And Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5).
And look what Jesus did! He did everything! He accomplished redemption for mankind, by breaking His own body and allowing it to be poured out! We are His branches, connected to the Great Gardener whose vine covers us, and which provides all sustenance.
In the end, the “Land” will not solely be the Middle-East lands promised long ago to Abraham, but all the earth. (2 Peter 3:10-13).
When you’re out haying this summer, sweat running down your face, or you’re out mowing this summer, and thirsting because of the heat, or you’re gardening and battling the bugs who are killing your bean plants, remember, the prophecies.
“My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest.” (Isaiah 32:18).
“I will sing for the one I love a song about his vineyard: My loved one had a vineyard on a fertile hillside.” (Isaiah 5:1)
How beautiful the relationship. We are the branches, closely grafted into the true vine. The true vine covers us, and we sit under it in peace and abundance. The abundance comes from the Vine Dresser who is the Father (John 15:1), who cares for the true vine in love and cares for his children, the branches.
Our God is a tremendous God!!!!!
[By Elizabeth Prata]