A Tree was placed in the middle of the Garden of Eden (Ge.2:9), let us presume to say for this teaching, this Tree is in the form of an Olive Tree. This Tree, The Tree of Life, is an ancient and Eternal Tree. Throughout scripture The LORD God uses many agricultural analogies to instill His Eternal truths, that is what we are attempting to uncover.
In the Holy Land of ancient Israel and the middle east one of the oldest trees and a significant source of produce is the Olive Tree, from the concept of this tree we will look at the tree, the root, the Branch, and perhaps even the fruit and its purpose and fulfillment in following Christ (Messiah).
A Family Tree is a record of its ancestral historical life, the olive tree is unique as it too records history and connects time through the past, the present, and gives a glimpse of potential for the future.
Tree of Life: The source of Eternal, Immortal, state of Living in God’s presence.
Root of Jesse: From his ancestral tree, his lineage, yet was also before him. Son of David, Son of Man.
Righteous branch: The fruit produced would be Righteousness for it stems from The Righteous One
Natzer: The root word that is the basis for a Nazarene or the town Nazareth; It means a sprout, also implies it is that there is nothing of significance or majesty to behold, and can be used to imply a student or disciple.
“No student is above his Master” (Mt. 10:24, Lk. 6:40) Our Master; if we are His students, is The One and Only, The Alpha and The Omega The Beginning and The End (Rev. 1:8), The Root and Offspring of Jesse (Rev. 22:16)
“I am the vine YOU are the Branches, apart from me you can do NOTHING (Jn.15:5). Basically what Jesus (Yeshua) is stating in fact is that He is The source and we are but the conduits unto which all GOOD fruit is produced. But there is So much more beneath the surface. We must look at the biblical principles and examples to fully understand The Cost of Discipleship.
Counting the Cost
Discipline is part of discipleship. Hebrews 12:11 states it like this.
” NO DISCIPLINE seems pleasurable at the time, but PAINFUL. Later on, however it Produces a Harvest of RIGHTEOUSNESS and PEACE for those Who have been TRAINED by it.”
We in the modern church have not wanted to deal with discipleship, just a social structure to feel good about ones self. A spectator sporting event to see the hippest or coolest musicians or speaker(s). There is a Cost to Follow Christ, He emphatically stated, “if the world Hates you for His names sake, remember it Hated Him first” (Jn.15:80. Again, “those that would live a godly life in Christ Jesus Will Be persecuted” (2Ti.3:12), why because being a friend of this world is enmity towards God. They are not of the same Kingdom nor of the same character.
Again Jesus states; “if anyone would come after me let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me. The early natzers (sprouts/disciples) of Christ or “followers of the Way” as they were known abandoned everything, they left it all behind to follow him and it COST them at least in this worlds view “Everything”. But, they received for their reward an Eternity in His Glorious presence!
So we can see the REWARD is worth so much more than the COST if we can see with eyes that look past this temporary existence of this life in this world and looking unto Eternity in a Glorious Kingdom with Christ Jesus as our God and King.