He dug it up and cleared it of stones and planted it with the choicest vines. He built a watchtower in it and cut out a winepress as well. Then he looked for a crop of good grapes, but it yielded only bad fruit. Isaiah 5:2
When someone plants a garden they expect to get something good out of it. They work the ground to ensure it has the right nutrients. Seeds are planted during the best part of the season to ensure good growth. They strive to provide the right amount of water for the plants to grow.
Later when the harvest season comes, the farmer expects to get the fruit or vegetables in great amounts that were planted. However, there are times when the plants yield nothing or only bad fruit.
Isaiah paints of picture of God planting a vineyard with the best of vines. When it came time for harvest, all that was produced was bad grapes of no value.
The vineyard that Isaiah talks about is very specifically the nation of Israel. Yet, this can be looked at with all believers. God is still in the process of building a vineyard of believers upon this earth. He is growing a large body of believers to follow Him.
Just as the farmer expects to get some good fruit and God expected Israel to produce fruit, He expects the believer to produce fruit.
All too often believers are like Israel was, producing no fruit. They claim to believe in Jesus, read the bible, go to church, but never produce any fruit. Their lives never really change. They live purposefully in sin refusing to change. They are never a witness of who Jesus is. They do not show God’s love in their lives.
Looking at some of the people, one will only see the world, not Jesus.
You, as a believer, are expected by God to produce some fruit. He has given you His Holy Spirit to guide you and give you strength to do what needs to be done. However, it is up to you to do it.
Be willing to be His witness. Show His love, forgiveness, mercy, and grace to others. Build others up in Jesus.
Your life should be one that looks like the life of Jesus. Work to live like Jesus as though your salvation depended upon it, but trust what Jesus did for your salvation. Produce the fruit in believing and following Jesus.
I pray today that you will know the salvation Jesus provides; that God will see His fruit in your life; that the world will see Jesus in you; that you will allow God’s Holy Spirit to guide you; and that many will know Jesus because of your life.
How beautiful you are, my darling! Oh, how beautiful! Your eyes are doves. You hair is like a flock of goats descending from the hills of Gilead. Song Of Solomon 4:1
The person who is in love sees the one that is loved as perfect. There does not appear to be any faults in the person. There is no other person for the person who is doing the loving.
Couples who are in love with each other are often described as crazy because they will do anything for each other out of their great love They see the other as of the highest value in their lives.
The man in Solomon’s book shows extreme love for one he loves. He describes her as beautiful and with a value of a whole flock of goats.
With seeing the man as God, it is showing God as loving His bride and thinking she is beautiful and of great value.
God sees His people, those who believe in Jesus, with those same eyes. He sees the believer as extremely beautiful and of extreme value.
Looking at a believer as the world does or even the individual, one only sees a few good things and many faults. Humans do not see another person as God does. He is seeing Christ Jesus and His righteousness in the believer.
God is telling the believer that he is beautiful, a bride without spot or wrinkle. One can be seen this way only because of the forgiveness and righteousness that Jesus has given the believer.
God has the ability to see a person as the end result of what Jesus has done for him, rather than just a person who keeps messing up and failing. This can be done because of His perfect love, grace and mercy.
As a believer you can see all of your faults. You know when and where you have messed up in your past. However, if you have repented of your sins, you are now clean before God. God sees you as beautiful, not sinful and dirty.
Allow yourself to be cleansed of all sin and stand before God in Christ Jesus as holy and righteous. Allow God to change you into the perfect bride who is spotless. Do not allow yourself to go back into the dirt of sin and death.
Do not allow yourself to see yourself as only garbage, but as one who is greatly loved.
I pray today that you will know God’s love for you; that you will know the forgiveness of Jesus; that you will see yourself as God sees you; and that you will live holy as Christ lived.
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1
The fastest reaction that people have to what someone else says or does is with their words. People are quick to answer someone’s words or actions.
When the words or actions are harmful and offensive, the reaction is often spoken with harsh, condemning words. Retaliation is quick and swift in the attempt to strike back and make the person pay. Anger rises up and gets the best of a person.
Responding in this way, only causes the first person to respond with even more harsh and condemning words. This is what causes many fight and keeps many battles moving forward, rather than being solved.
Solomon realizes that a soft answer will keep anger at bay and calm a person down. Harsh words will only get a person more angry.
Harsh words are easy to speak and often are the first things that come out of a person. Believers are often quick to use harsh words under the disguise of trying to help the person see the error of their ways. Christians are often quick to condemn the sin in another person with harsh words, rather than showing true love.
The only time Jesus used harsh words was with the religious leaders who should have known better. With those who were lost in sin and did not know God in any way, He spoke with gentle words of love and kindness.
When words of condemnation and hate are spoken to unbelievers or even to other believers, it will raise up their anger. It will make a wrong even more wrong, causing greater battles and injury.
There is nothing harsh in the words of love, mercy and grace. Those are words that reach out to touch a person for God, revealing God’s true character.
As you go along in life there will be times when you will be hurt by someone or see someone steeped in sin. How you respond to that person will reveal the character of God. Your words can either draw the person towards God or push them away.
Harsh, condemning words will push them away and cause their anger to rise up against you and God. Soft and gentle, but firm words will calm them down and draw them towards Jesus.
How are your words causing others to act? Are they stirring up anger or are they drawing them towards God and diffusing the anger?
I pray today that you will know the love of God; that God will give you the words to speak; that you will speak out of the love God has for you and for others; and that your words will be the words of God to build up rather than tear down and destroy.