Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
Authored By :
Published On :
September 16, 1999
Last Updated :
September 18, 2013
Sensitive To The Wind Of The Holy Spirit, Beware Of The Winds Of False Doctrine, God Tells Prophet Jeremiah To Tear Down The Lies And Deceptions, Murderers Of God's Holy Prophets, First Century Compromise With Rome, Lies And Deceptions, The Devil's Various Titles, John The Baptist Resisted The Lies, Modern False Prophets, Parable Of The Tares, Evil Tree And Evil Fruit, Chaff Of The Wicked, Questions For My Christian Brethren, Symbolic Trees Planted By The River Of The Water Of Life, Information Concerning Rain Trees, Sad Fate Of My Rain Tree, Closing Remarks, Suggested Reading Resources List
As I concluded in part three, it is important that we each remain flexible, sensitive and receptive to the Voice of God's Holy Spirit, because it is the Spirit which instructs us in wisdom, knowledge and the way of righteousness by way of God's eternal Word. However, at the same time, while we should be flexible reeds of wheat who bend to the Wind of God's Will, and flexible branches which yield the fruits of the Spirit, as we learned in part one, it is also possible to become overly flexible; so much so, that we actually become politically-correct menpleasers who compromise the doctrinal purity of our faith, by embracing doctrines and ideas which are clearly in conflict with the written Word.
It may interest you to know that it is for this very reason that when God called Jeremiah to be His Prophet to the land of Israel, He specifically informed Jeremiah that before he could plant the truth in the hearts of his countrymen, he had to first root out and pull down the lies and the false doctrines which had been planted by the false priests and prophets of that ancient era. Consider this verse as proof:
"See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant."
Jeremiah 1:10, KJV
Tragically, as I explain in articles such as "Revelation's Babylon the Great", the Jewish leadership did not want to have anything to do with the Lord's fiery Prophets, and the uncomfortable truths which they revealed. In fact, those treacherous snakes eventually succeeded in shutting up the mouths of God's true Prophets through severe persecution, as well as by death. Jesus Himself exposed their murderous ways with these words that are found in the Gospel of Matthew:
"Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous, And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets. Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers. Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell? Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city: That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar. Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation. O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not! Behold, your house is left unto you desolate. For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord."
Matthew 23:29-39, KJV
Thus, as we learned in part one, this same false, deceptive, lethargic spirit existed during the time of Christ several hundred years later; and was being promoted by the corrupt Jewish leaders who sought to preserve their power and the status quo, through their sickening compromise with their Roman conquerors. Such was the case with Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin, as well as with the Herodian dynasty. Precisely as Jesus and the Apostles warned the young Church, these false shepherds and teachers taught a watered-down version of the truth that was replete with lies and deceptions. The people who swallowed their lies were simply weak reeds who were blown over by their wind of false doctrines. Clearly, they were not strong, fruitful trees for the Lord.
Of course, the evil force behind that deceptive wind which blew during much of the First Century was none other than Satan himself, who Jesus called the "father of lies"; who the Apostle Paul referred to as the "prince of the power of the air", the "god of this world", "spiritual wickedness in high places", and a false "angel of light"; and who John described as "the dragon", "that old serpent" and "the accuser of our brethren", as we can determine by the following verses:
"Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it."
John 8:44, KJV
"In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them."
2 Corinthians 4:4, KJV
"And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light."
2 Corinthians 11:14, KJV
"Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:"
Ephesians 2:2, KJV
"For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."
Ephesians 6:12, KJV
"And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night."
Revelation 12:9-10, KJV
"And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,"
Revelation 20:2, KJV
Of course, as we also know from the Scriptures, there was one strong reed of wheat who did not so easily bend to the deceptive winds of false doctrine which were so prevalent at that time; and it is for this very reason that he eventually lost his head. Instead, the Gospels inform us that this man stood out as "a burning and a shining light" who called the people of Israel to repentance in the years leading up to the revelation of Jesus Christ. This man, John the Baptist, stood out from his peers, as one who told the naked truth, instead of bowing to the sickening political correctness and the doctrines of devils which were espoused by the blind, legalistic religionists in Jerusalem. Jesus Himself said the following concerning John:
". . . What went ye out into the wilderness for to see? A reed shaken with the wind? But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? Behold, they which are gorgeously apparelled, and live delicately, are in kings' courts. But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? Yea, I say unto you, and much more than a prophet. This is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee. For I say unto you, Among those that are born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist: but he that is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he."
Luke 7:24b-28, KJV
"Ye sent unto John, and he bare witness unto the truth. But I receive not testimony from man: but these things I say, that ye might be saved. He was a burning and a shining light: and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light. But I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me."
John 5:33-36, KJV
So as you can see, John the Baptist was not a reed shaken by the winds of false doctrine and political correctness. John was not a sickening manpleaser like all of the rest of them. He was willing to stand firmly for the truth to the very end of his ministry. He was willing to stand firmly against the strong winds of adversity; because like the righteous tree we discussed earlier, John was firmly anchored in the true Word of God. John was clearly listening to the right Wind, to the right Voice, and to the right Spirit, and not to the false one being promoted by the Jewish religionists and the false prophets who tickled people's ears.
Sadly, as I briefly mentioned in part one, the situation has not changed. Not only has modern Judaism continued down the destructive road to hell, but as I explain in articles such as "Elijah: Where Are the True Prophets of God?", "Modern False Prophets and Worldly Ecumenism", and "Money-Making Bible Hucksters and Mammon", Christianity has also become filled with many false prophets and deceptive teachers, who tickle the ears of their followers for profit. These people are not true wheat; they are tares. They may act and appear like wheat, but they are not. While they may be currently growing amongst the true wheat, someday the Lord will pluck them out by the root, and cast them into the fire, as we see in the following Parable:
"Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn . . . He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world."
Matthew 13:24-30, 37b-40, KJV
In another Parable, Jesus also informs us that these wicked deceivers are evil trees which bring forth evil fruit, and that someday they will be cut down and cast into the fires of God's righteous judgments, as we see by these verses:
"Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."
Matthew 7:15-20, KJV
In yet other places throughout the Scriptures, we are told that the wicked are similar to the useless chaff which will be blown away by the winds of God's chastisements. Consider the following verses:
"The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish."
Psalms 1:4-6, KJV
"How oft is the candle of the wicked put out! and how oft cometh their destruction upon them! God distributeth sorrows in his anger. They are as stubble before the wind, and as chaff that the storm carrieth away."
Job 21:17-18, KJV
"Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth."
Daniel 2:35, KJV
"But he answered and said, Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up."
Matthew 15:13, KJV
"I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire: Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire."
Matthew 3:11-12, KJV
So as you can clearly see, in quite a few places throughout the Bible, the Lord compares the wicked unbelievers -- and even those people who feign to be our Christian brethren -- to fruitless trees, to useless tares, and to empty chaff which will all eventually be destroyed. This is a sobering thought indeed.
What about you, my friend? Are you a healthy tree which is firmly rooted in the fertile ground of God's Word? Are you a truly submissive tree which knows how to bend to the Wind and Will of His Spirit? Are your branches fruitful branches which are bearing new souls for the Kingdom of God? Do you allow Him to prune your branches occasionally, so that you will become an even more fruitful tree? If so, then you will surely have your place in God's glorious Kingdom sometime in the future. As the Psalmist and the Apostle Paul wrote:
"Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart."
Psalms 37:4, KJV
"But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him."
1 Corinthians 2:9, KJV
In fact, symbolically-speaking, you just may be a tree that is planted by the River of the Water of Life within the very Golden City itself. Compare closely the following verses. The similarities are truly amazing. Please notice how both verses mention a tree, a river, fruit being produced each month, and leaves of a special nature. God's Word is truly profound:
"And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper."
Psalms 1:3, KJV
"And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations."
Revelation 22:1-2, KJV
If you are interested in reading more about the possible symbolism behind John's description of the Heavenly City, please refer to such articles as "The Born-Again Experience: Now or Later?".
Before concluding this series, I would like to return your attention to the tree which actually inspired me to write this series. You may have noticed that in talking about it, I wrote in the past tense. As I will now explain to you, the reason why I did this is because the tree no longer exists; at least not in the form in which I knew it fourteen years ago when I first wrote this article.
You may recall that in part two I mentioned that back in 1999 I did not know what kind of tree it was. However, as I began this update fourteen years later, I conducted a bit of online research in order to answer this question. I arrived at the conclusion that this pair of majestic, towering trees which I have admired for so many years are known by the scientific name of "Albizia saman", or by the obsolete name of "Samanea saman". In our English language they are commonly referred to as rain trees, monkeypod trees, cow tamarind, saman tree, or zaman. In the local dialect, this tree is called "tronkon mames". The rain tree is indigenous to the northern part of South America and the Caribbean Islands. However, over the centuries it has spread to many other regions of the world, including Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands. There is a similar species called Acacia which is quite plenteous in Australia and elsewhere.
These beautiful rain trees typically live for eighty to one hundred years, and can easily grow to a height of fifty to eighty feet. Going by this information alone, I believe that the two trees which are behind my home are quite old, being as they are very large. Rain trees are easily recognizable due to the fact that their branches spread out widely like an umbrella to form a very large canopy. As occurs with the two trees in my neighborhood, the branches of the rain tree are typically covered with tropical ferns, orchids and related plants.
Tragically, the tree which I describe in this article is now quite dead. While you may possibly assume that its demise was the result of a tropical storm -- or typhoon -- let me inform you that this is not the case. In fact, this magnificent tree was purposely destroyed a number of years ago by man. To be more specific, some of my neighbors chose to destroy the tree because each time that a major typhoon would pass through our area, the electrical wires to some of the nearby homes would be snapped due to the swaying branches. With my view from the kitchen window, I observed that their solution seemed to be to start burning trash underneath the tree near the trunk, so that their actions eventually killed this majestic creation of the Lord. My neighbors may have thought that their manner of execution was subtle, but from my unknown vantage point, I knew full well what was going on with that dear tree which had inspired me with its verdant beauty for so many years.
Once the tree started dying, and its branches began to dry up over the ensuing months, the neighbors began to saw off the branches little by little. Now, years later, this once majestic tree is a horrible, sad-looking trunk with a few sawed-off, fern-covered thick branches jutting from it, and it has completely lost all of its former glory. It used to look very much like its twin which grows perhaps fifty feet away, but now it looks like the image I have included here. The picture on the left was taken in July of 2012, while the image on the right is the sister tree which still exists at this current time.
While I truly miss seeing that grand old tree as I gaze out of my kitchen window, I am thankful that its beautiful twin has not met a similar fate, and probably never will due to its safe location away from electrical wires. Thus is my tale of the parable of the tree and the storm. It is my hope that you have found it informative and enlightening, and I pray that it has been a blessing in your life as well. If you have an account with either Facebook, Twitter or Google+, I would really appreciate if you would take the time to click on the corresponding link that is found on this page. Thank you so much, and may God bless you abundantly!
For additional information, you may want to refer to the list of reading resources below which were also mentioned in this series, or which are related to this series, and which
are likewise located on this very same Bill's Bible Basics website.
Are Personal Tragedies Due to Sin?
Are You Crucified With Christ?
Are You Saved and Sealed and Healed and Filled?
Beholding the Evil and the Good
Elijah: Where Are the True Prophets of God?
Have You Read the New Scriptures Yet?
Have You Sold Your Soul for a Pound of Flesh?
Humility in Our Understanding of God's Word
In Defense of the KJV Bible!
Is Jesus the Only Begotten Son of God?
Love, Mercy Forgiveness and Chastisement
Modern False Prophets and Worldly Ecumenism
Money-Making Bible Hucksters and Mammon
Parable of the Sower: Salvation and Service
Revelation's Babylon the Great
Seek Ye First the Kingdom of God
The Battle is Not Yours Alone!
The Born-Again Experience: Now or Later?
The Children of God and Politics
The Faith of a Little Child
The Fruits of Disobedience
The Judgment of Angels, Demons and Men
The Lamb of God Was a Goat
The Lord Will Lift You Up
Why Doesn't God Heal Me?