LHM – July 2019 Message

Rivers and Trees

Ancient Jerusalem was not a city of plush lawns and tall shady trees.  A drainage ditch ran through the middle of the city.  Anything that ran into it, rainwater, trash, etc. eventually ran into the Dead Sea.  Ancient cities tended to use the nearby trees for building or firewood.  Maybe there were a few fruit trees, but not likely because water was scarce.  Barren streets, you would have to leave the city to find a grove of trees. This was typical of most ancient cities.

The Book of Revelation describes the New Jerusalem.  The river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the city.  On either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit.  The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.  Think of the difference, a river of pure life-giving water, instead of a sewer!  Trees with life giving fruit and healing leaves line the streets.  God’s kingdom will be marked by life and health.

Isn’t this the kind of change we long for in our own lives?  When our lives are dry, we thirst for the water of life that Jesus promises.  When our worlds seem barren and empty, we dream of the beautiful tree of life which both feeds us and heals us.  How do we receive that gift?  We look at His cross and suffering.  We see only the tree of death.  By Jesus suffering, God made it a tree of life for us.  Jesus said, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink.”  (John 7:37)

As Christians, you are part of what God is doing through the Lutheran Hour Ministries.  Your support makes a very real impact on this ministry every day.  Look forward and see how the Lord will work through the Lutheran Hour Ministries.

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