The Branch of the Lord

“In that day the Branch of the Lord will be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the land will be the pride and glory of the survivors in Israel. Those who are left in Zion, who remain in Jerusalem, will be called holy, all who are recorded among the living in Jerusalem. The Lord will wash away the filth of the women of Zion; he will cleanse the bloodstains from Jerusalem by a spirit of judgment and a spirit of fire. Then the Lord will create over all of Mount Zion and over those who assemble there a cloud of smoke by day and a glow of flaming fire by night; over everything the glory will be a canopy. It will be a shelter and shade from the heat of the day, and a refuge and hiding place from the storm and rain” Isaiah 4:2-6

I have the image of an old old tree. Large and maybe even very beautiful at one time but the inside of the tree is rotted. It is crumbling from the inside. The leaves are withered, the fruit is bad and it is zapping all the resources and nutrients from the area. You look at the area surrounding this rotten tree and you see dirt and rocks. No growth and no life.

When reading through the first couple of chapters of Isaiah you hear about how God’s people’s sin had brought about all kinds of horrible things. The people had fallen away from God. They were not living by his commands. They were worshiping other things. They were producing bad fruit. They were like this rotten tree. Although the prophet is pointing out the people’s sin and telling them about God’s judgment he also gives a message of hope. The tree is rotten so it must be cut down but out of this cut down tree the branch of the Lord will grow.

Jesus is the Branch of the Lord. He is the vine. He is he source of life. He is the source of living water. It is through us abiding in Jesus the vine that we have the opportunity to experience being a part of God’s kingdom and bear fruit. For apart from us abiding in the vine we will be just like this rotten tree. Our healing comes when we repent for our sin and are cleans by the blood of Jesus.

I cannot count the number of times I have met with someone and they responded to me “you need healing”. Sometimes they even start praying for me, even without asking permission. Prayers are fine but do not touch me without asking. It is a pet peeve of mine. I often find myself restraining myself from lashing out. Or yelling back at them in anger. Actually I think I very much have done that very thing, whoops. Many have even been puzzled by my response. Why does it bother me so much? I receive healing daily when I repent for my sins. So when someone tells me “you need healing” it’s like them telling me my repentance isn’t good enough. I have come to terms with the fact that they are just looking at the outside. They have missed the entire point. They don’t even know what healing is. For what they are seeing is the cut down tree that had been rotten and they are missing the fact that though abiding in Jesus he is producing a garden where that rotten tree once stood. Furthermore there lack of understanding is a testimony that they are the ones that need healing.

I have come to terms with only Jesus can heal me and anything else in this world is just a cheep imitation. A bandaid. Oh how I love my bandaids at times because they help relieve the pain. There is nothing wrong with bandaids. So I go to doctors, counselors and the likes for my bandaid but I go to Jesus for my healing.

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