The Almond tree
Jer. 1:11, 12Posted 12/06/13
By Reverend ray
“The word of the Lord came to me saying, “What do you see, Jeremiah?” And I said, “I see a rod of an almond tree. Then the Lord said to me, “You have seen well, for I am watching over My word to perform it.”
“In his dramatic critique of American culture, Philip Slater, in The Pursuit of Loneliness, reminds us we are living in the period of the “toilet assumption,” namely, that when something disappears or is no longer visible, we think we are rid of it.1
As a summary thought of the passage quoted; God has not thrown out His word idly as if He were indifferent about it or it’s fulfillment. What He has spoken He will bring to fulfillment.
Here the prophet Jeremiah is given a vision of an almond branch which would have rung clear in the mind of Jeremiah as to its meaning. Jeremiah was from Anathoth where even yet today the almond tree flourishes.
The almond tree is the first to bring forth her blossoms, blossoming in late winter while other trees remain dormant as though fast asleep. Thus the Hebrew word for almond means awake or watchful.
This is the attitude God takes toward His Word and in this case the future judgment determined upon Judah at the hand of the Babylonians.
If we think in historical terms in respect to what is open before us, perhaps no other nation in history apart from Israel has been more saturated with this Word of God than the nation of America, which Jeremiah says God keeps a constant vigil over to fulfill it.
We draw near to a holiday that is shared by few other countries and certainly even fewer that bear such spiritual moorings as in the case of America’s humble beginnings.
Yet history has proved herself to be as consistent at repeating herself as God is at watching over His Word. The parallels of Judah’s stewardship of the Word of God and America’s own stewardship of God’s grace and custodianship of the Word are strikingly similar.
Judah moved from a staunch gratitude before and to God to the place were Jeremiah finds his people having completely abandoned her God with utter indifference to Him as though out of sight, out of mind.
So also American culture is described by Philip Slater as a “toilet assumption” whereby he vividly paints a picture very much in the same mental state as Judah in respect to God and His Word.
Though we have churches on every street corner and messages blasted across radio, TV and internet, we remain numb to the proclamation and bone chillingly cold to ramifications that are incumbent upon discarding and ignoring God’s Word.
The quote; “Christians” of America resemble more of the appearance of one who prefers an out of sight, out of mind attitude when it comes to the Word of God than that of embracing a constant vigil of it alongside God.
But all of these short falls in the character of a nation, mankind and a Christian does not alter or affect the vigilance God keeps over His Word. We can be assured that the detail with which He keeps His watch over the Word to see its fulfillment reaches to every jot and tittle. And America’s disregard for her spiritual roots and the Word of God do not escape the piercing gaze of God’s watchful eye any more than it escaped Him in Jeremiah’s time. He is as punctual and cognizant to bring to fulfillment of His Word in our time as He was some 2500 years ago.
Like the Judah in the time of Jeremiah, those who claim a relationship with Christ are warned that no man can serve two masters for he will either love the one and hate the other or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.
The problem lies in this that we think we can live as though we are entirely oblivious to God and His Word and yet claim to do homage to Him. The reality is that we are echoing the mentality of Judah as she brought her sacrifices to the temple and yet worshiped the god, Moloch, in the valley of Hinnom and said our God does not see us, we are at peace and safe for He will not preform the Word proclaimed against us.
But here too, history has proved herself for it has shown that indeed God is not slack concerning His promises or negligent in His watch over His Word.
The American culture would have us believe the Word of God has disappeared or at least is no longer significant in our world and therefore we are rid of it.
The almond tree has not changed its nature or character over the course of the last 2500 years of history from the time of Jeremiah until today… neither has God!
Dribble from the pen