We’re heading for history’s main road junction | Forget Shakespeare, read Solomon for time is running out | To bear fruit or be taken away, THAT’S the question!

Song of Solomon 2:11-13 (KJV)

11 For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone;

12 The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land;

Nature narrates and displays God created cycles of growth and development, wild as well as cultivated. Tales of seeding, planting, watering, pruning … expressed in sprouting, ground breaking, bud break, growing and blossoming in a near infinite variety until decay and withering inevitably sets in. Then, in the unseen of winter dormancy we come to know and trust, based on our past experiences, the cycle of growth and promise will recommence next year while most generative energy is redirect to inner workings for a season.

In the transitioning of spring into summer the Lord is lavishing His creation once again with a wonderful display of his love, creative genius, eye for beauty and detail, a splendid floral covering, unaffected by and irrespective of how the darkly inspired may use and/or abuse it. Hidden within its splendor, an imperative and urgent message is found.

 

 

Looking outside I noticed wild, dark hearted poppies (prophetically and culturally associated with commemoration of death) surfacing alongside our sandy bike path, wisteria’s purple rain leaves falling in our neighborhood gardens (resonating with the post rapture order to come) and carefully handled red roses blooming in a nearby park (prophetically pointing to the goddess of regeneration, Isis, Mystery Babylon).

Only three flowers are mentioned by name in the Bible: the Shoshan or Shoshanna (lily or rose), Shishanat Ha ‘Emakim (rose of the valleys) and Havatzelet Ha’Sharon (rose or lily of the Sharon). In the Song of Solomon Jesus equates Himself with a rose of Sharon and lily of the valleys. Pure and white, resonating with a spotless lamb designated for a likewise spotless bride.

 

Closing our eyes, we can almost smell their wonderful scent while longing to hear the accompanying trumpet sound as He’s leaping towards us. Concurrently, on our pathway there are still little foxes to handle and remaining traces of darkness to overcome, nearing the day we will be called up, as on a mountain, to come away. Solomon sings:

Song of Solomon 2 (KJV)

I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys.

As the lily among thorns, so is my love among the daughters.

As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved among the sons. I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste.

He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love.

Stay me with flagons, comfort me with apples: for I am sick of love.

His left hand is under my head, and his right hand doth embrace me.

I charge you, O ye daughters of Jerusalem, by the roes, and by the hinds of the field, that ye stir not up, nor awake my love, till he please.

The voice of my beloved! behold, he cometh leaping upon the mountains, skipping upon the hills.

My beloved is like a roe or a young hart: behold, he standeth behind our wall, he looketh forth at the windows, shewing himself through the lattice.

10 My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away.

11 For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone;

12 The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land;

13 The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.

14 O my dove, that art in the clefts of the rock, in the secret places of the stairs, let me see thy countenance, let me hear thy voice; for sweet is thy voice, and thy countenance is comely.

15 Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes.

16 My beloved is mine, and I am his: he feedeth among the lilies.

17 Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, turn, my beloved, and be thou like a roe or a young hart upon the mountains of Bether.

 

Tender grapes | Sly foxes

Looking for both solid Biblical teaching on topic as well as insightful research and practical application as to what to focus our attention on right now, I selected these.

For your consideration: a Charles Spurgeon Bible study on ‘tender grapes‘ in which he puts forward what tender grapes are. He reveals what the Lord’s estimate of them is and exposes what the danger to these tender grapes constitutes, based on the 15th verse:

“Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines; for our vines have tender grapes.”

Brushstroke Picture Frame: https://www.tuxpi.com/photo-effects/brushstroke-photo-frame

There’s nothing new under the sun. No foxes exempt.

“The same creature that tempted Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden is the one that still wants to destroy mankind, and is pulling the strings of most little creatures.” Steve Quayle, end times watchman and author of the book ‘Little Creatures. The Gates of Hell Are Opening’ puts forward.

Forget Shakespeare | Return to faith

Steve Quayle continues: “When belief Jesus and the supernatural falls to the wayside, it is often replaced by humanist belief systems such as communism, Nazism and socialism. Yet today we’re seeing that the promises of man-made utopias and heaven on Earth were all hollow undertakings. The deaths of untold numbers of innocents were often left in the wake of nations that had the misfortune of adopting one of these governing systems after throwing Christianity under the bus. For that reason, I believe to understand how our world actually operates is essential for returning to reality.

A return to the faith that offers mankind an insight into his existence is the path that must be taken, while abandoning those human belief systems that failed and are failing so miserably. This will enable us to regain sanity in our troubled world. The key to realizing how our world works, and the invisible powers and hands that operate behind the scenes to control us, comes with the acknowledgement that there is a supernatural world that operates within and alongside the physical universe. Once a person comprehends this, the scales can fall from our eyes so that we can see both the dangers that face us as well as the solution to defending ourselves from those unseen, supernatural threats.”

Such dangers are relevant to all believers, young and more mature, especially in the area of their tender grapes. Spurgeon considers these aspects in the life of the believer as tender grapes, in danger of being spoiled by little foxes and in need of protection:

  • a secret mourning for sin;
  • a humble faith in Jesus Christ;
  • a genuine change of life;
  • a life of secret devotion;
  • an eager desire for more grace and
  • a simple love to Jesus.

“If you have any sign of spiritual life, if you have any tender grapes upon your branches, the devil and his foxes will be sure to be at you; therefore, endeavor to get as close as ever you can to two persons who are mentioned hard by my text, namely, the King and his spouse. First, keep close to Christ for this is your life; and next, keep close to his Church, for this is your comfort.

The vine is of all trees the most useless unless it bears fruit. You cannot make hardly anything of it. You would scarcely be able to cut enough wood out of a vine to hang a pot upon. You cannot turn it into furniture and barely could you use it in the least degree for building purposes. It must either bear fruit, or else it must be consumed in the fire. The branches of the vine that bear no fruit are necessarily cut off and they are used, as I have seen them used in the South of France many a time, in little twisted bundles for kindling the fire. They burn very rapidly, so there is soon an end of them and then they are gone.

The vine is constantly used, in Scripture, as a picture of the nominal Church of Christ, so, like the vine, we must either bring forth fruit or we shall be accounted as good for nothing. Dear Friends, we must serve God! We must bring forth, from our very soul, love to God and service to Him as the fruit of our renewed nature, or else we are useless, worthless, shall only abide our time and then we shall be cut down to be burned. Our end must be destruction if our life is not fruitful. This gives a very solemn importance to our lives and it should make each of us seriously ask, “Am I bringing forth fruit to God? Have I brought forth fruits meet for repentance? For if not, I must, by-and-by, feel the keen edge of the Vinedresser’s knife and I shall be taken away from any sort of union that I now have with the Church which is Christ’s vine—and be flung over the wall as a useless thing whose end is to be burned.

Beloved, you all know that there is no possibility of bringing forth any fruit unless we are in Christ and unless we abide in Christ. We must bear fruit, or we shall certainly perish—and we cannot have fruit unless we have Christ. We must be knit to Christ, vitally one with Him, just as a branch is really, after a living fashion, one with the stem!”

In addition to this profound teaching, a gem indeed, I looked for a practical applications reflected in nature from the understanding that God speaks directly through his creation. Interested in how the annual growth cycle of grapevines is designed, Wiki proved a concise and clear way to commence. Note the descriptions of ‘spring bleeding’ and the veraison or tender grape stage especially, wonderfully applicable to our spiritual life.

Spring bleeding 

“The grape starts its annual growth cycle in the spring with bud break.”… “If the vine had been pruned during the winter, the start of this cycle is signaled by a “bleeding” of the vine. This bleeding occurs when the soil begins to warm and osmotic forces pushes water, containing a low concentration of organic acids, hormones, minerals and sugars, up from the root system of the vine and it is expelled from the cuts (or “wounds”) left over from pruning the vine. During this period a single vine can “bleed” up to 5 litres (1.3 US gal) of water.

Isaiah 53:5 KJV
But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

Ephesians 1:7 KJV
In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

Veraison in focus

As ripening continues, the fruit becomes attractive to animals, partly due to changes in aroma from acidic to sweet with fruitiness. As ripening occurs, herbaceous aromas are degraded. It is unknown whether the degradation of herbaceous aromas allows fruit aromas to be detected, or if fruity aromas develop later in berry ripening.

A wine specialist added some information regarding timing and handling: “In the northern hemisphere veraison, the ripening grapes begin to soften and change colour typically occurs anywhere from late June to mid-August, depending on the climate, and in the southern hemisphere from January to February.

Leaves are often pruned, thinned at this time to give grapes more sun and air exposure. Sugar levels begin to rise in individual grapes after veraison. At this stage of the growing cycle, vines are rarely irrigated after veraison because this can/will dilute the grapes flavours.”

Below, the a depiction of multicolor veraison or tender grapes; the vine’s attractive coat of many colors …… although the grapes may still taste sour at this growth stage, the Lord calls them tender …. indicating they are both precious and vulnerable, awaiting His sweetness to be added. 

 

Imagines synchronizing with what we studied previously concerning our being caught up and going home soon to be reunited with Him and attributed His sweet promises. We may rejoice in the subsequent understanding put forward by Spurgeon:

My beloved is mine and I am His

  • He is mine by connection in the same body; He is the head and I am part of His body.
  • He is mine by affectionate relationship; He has given me His love.
  • He is mine by the connection of birth; I am born again of Him.
  • He is mine by choice; He gave Himself for me.
  • He is mine by indwelling; He has decided to live inside me.
  • He is mine personally, He is mine eternally.

“It certainly does seem a great thing to call him mine; to think that he should ever be mine, and that all he is, and all he has, and all he says, and all he does, and all he ever will be, is all mine. When a wife takes a husband to be hers, he becomes all hers, and she reckons that she has no divided possession in him; and it certainly is so with thee, dear heart, if Christ be thine.”

Ways of knowing that I belong to Jesus; ways that ‘I am my beloved’s’:

  • I am His by the gift of His Father.
  • I am His by purchase, paid for by His own life.
  • I am His by conquest, He fought for me and won me.
  • I am His by surrender, because I gave myself to Him.

“Blessed be God, this is true evermore — ‘I am his,’ his to-day, in the house of worship, and his to-morrow in the house of business; his as a singer in the sanctuary, and his as a toiler in the workshop; his when I am preaching, and equally his when I am walking the streets; his while I live, his when I die; his when my soul ascends and my body lies mouldering in the grave; the whole personality of my manhood is altogether his for ever and for ever.”

“Which is the greater miracle — that he should be mine, or that I should be his?”

May these teachings of the spiritual and descriptions of the natural help us to focus our attention on what the Lord points us to in Scripture in this season, raising our spiritual and sensory awareness of both our earthly responsibilities as well as His soon coming.

 

 

Blessings!

 

 

right-turn-junction

‘The wise men saw the celestial signs, knew the prophetic time, and acted on what they observed – coupled with their faith. Likewise, we see many very significant signs just over the past few months, all coming together, warning of sudden destruction – and the return of the Redeemer for His Bride.’

Guidance on how to prepare for His soon coming is found here.

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8 comments

  1. Beautiful additions in imagery and prose. “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. … John 15

  2. I believe, from reports I had seen from those in Israel, that grapes should be in the tender stage right now, especially with the early season.

    Very timely reminders. It is amazing to see the messages that God gives to His children, and reminds them to draw near at this hour.

    Oh, that we would get lost in that one question and thought: “Which is the greater miracle – that He should be mine, or that I should be His.”

    1. Wonderful to ponder and rest our eyes and hearts upon amidst worldly turmoil. The crazier things get, the more the need to be still and know.

      Thanks, Daniel!

      Looking forward to your next teaching.

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