Crystal Writes A Blog

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An Edible Arrangement


Visual Food by Flickr User Rita Loccisano aka VisualFood Design, CC License = Attribution, Noncommercial, Share Alike

Visual Food by Flickr User Rita Loccisano aka VisualFood Design, CC License = Attribution, Noncommercial, Share Alike
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Having been raised in the southwestern United States, I have had the privilege of tasting wonderful fruit, like strawberries, that was actually sweet without having to add sugar. The difference in eating fully ripened fruit instead of that which was picked early and artificially ripened with ethylene gas is indescribable. I’m sure you can imagine how much more flavor would be in any crop allowed a full stay in rich soil and sunshine.

In today’s reading from Leviticus 19:23 through Leviticus 19:32, the reading begins with instructions for planting fruit trees. In these instructions, it says that the fruit from the trees will not be edible and is forbidden to eat for three years. In the fourth year, it becomes holy for use in worshiping God. But in the fifth year, Israel may begin to eat the fruit, and that will cause the trees to produce even more fruit for them.

I don’t believe God compared the works we do for Him with fruit for no reason. His word says in Matthew 7:15:20 that we will know false prophets from true ones based on the fruit they bear. Comparing that with the instructions for letting a tree mature before eating its fruit, I would say that a true prophet will also bear mature fruit. Evidence of that is demonstrated in the story of an apostate preacher (Todd Bentley) who said God stuffed gifts into him (in a vision) without training him because he needed to teach right away. Now, even many who at one time believed the man was called of God have found out that he was running on his own power instead of on God’s anointing.

The rest of the verses for this portion give sensible advice including that Israel should not practice divination or fortune-telling, should not debase their daughters by making them prostitutes, and should not seek out spirit-mediums or sorcerers to be defiled by them. They are also told not to cut gashes in their skin when someone dies, and they are told not to tattoo themselves. In addition, they are to stand up and show respect for the elderly, and above all else, fear Yahveh and remember that He is The Lord.

As I read all these things, I wonder if that Scripture about there being nothing new under the sun is being played out before my eyes. Either the people who lived in the land before Israel, or some of the children of Israel, were doing things like cutting and living by horoscopes. Maybe a little of both. Now, we can pick up magazines on current culture and find advertisements for many of the things God forbade for Israel. We can read news stories where instead of respect for the elderly, people beat them because they are old and weak. It’s a scary world anymore outside the church and–unfortunately–inside many churches.

Maybe the obedience in waiting for physical fruit to mature is even more important than whatever scientific reasons are behind it. Outside the church, if people would learn to wait, anticipate, and mature before running headlong into life, they would make fewer bad decisions that affect their entire lives. In the church, if believers who want to be used of God would first study to show themselves approved before God, they would become–as the Scripture says in 2 Timothy 2:15–workers that do not need to be ashamed and can accurately teach the word of truth.

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April 14, 2014 - Posted by | Bible Study, Nonfiction, Torah Commentary | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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