The Big Picture
The Story of Scripture can be told –rightly or wrongly– in several different ways. No doubt, this story begins with, is sustained by, and ends with God. But the story is also very much a human story. In the story, humans are in the image and likeness of the Creator God. Whatever version of the story you tell, this means that humans are important, valuable and endowed with huge responsibility – to represent or reflect the Creator God to His creation.
From start to finish, the biblical narrative can be seen to portray humans by way of a very basic metaphor – faithful fruit trees. The command in Eden to ‘be fruitful and multiply’ does not cease in the entire story. At various points in the Story, humans are warned, reprimanded or punished for not bearing fruit. The tree metaphor is used by many characters – not least Isaiah, John the Baptist and Paul. Finally, the book of Revelation ends with a glimpse of a different and New Garden; with trees… beautiful, fruitful trees – with leaves which are for the healing of the nations.
Most importantly, Jesus himself used this metaphor too. He talked of himself as ‘the vine‘ and his followers as ‘the branches‘, and said that if his followers would ‘abide‘ in him, they would ‘bear much fruit‘. In other words, the faith-walk of following Jesus is the walk of bearing fruit. This blog is a place to explore what it means to have and live-out this fruitful faith.
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(An mp3 of a relevant sermon by Mark Strom called ‘The Really Big Picture’ can be found by right-clicking here, and selecting “Save As…”)