The subject of the Tree of Life is another area where there is a similiarity between the first and last chapters of the Bible and the initial and spoiled and the final and never to be spoiled eternal paradise God has for all believers. The first Tree of Life seemed to have a mysterious spiritual or miraculous quality that gave eternal life so God didn't want Adam and Eve to eat of it after they fell. This is because it would result in their living forever in a fallen sinful state with bodies and minds and hearts weakened and infected by sin.
God by His Holy Spirit gave me a remarkable insight from this verse that I had never seen before and don't remember hearing or reading before even from any other Christian. The insight is that all the trees of the Garden of Eden were trees that were pleasant to the sight and good for food and there was possibly nothing wrong with this in God's sight. However Eve was especially tempted by the devil when he was talking about the possibilities of the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil that it was a tree to be desired to make one wise. She then took of its fruit and ate and gave to Adam who also ate and together they brought about the fall of the human race. I now think it was especially that this tree was desired to make one wise which enticed them because the other two characteristics were similiar to all the other trees of the garden.
And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Genesis 2:9
And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. Genesis 3:6
And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat and live forever: Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life. Genesis 3:22-24 I don't know if this tree exists at all on Earth anymore but if it did it would probably be centred in an area in what is now Iraq and could have been driven to extinction recently by the wars there even if it had survived to recent times.
I read from a Bible dictionary I have that Middle East kings like in Persia, Arabia and Babylon and probably Assyria liked to have all kinds of animals and vegetation or depictions of these in their palaces as if they were smaller replicas of the Garden of Eden. Saddam Hussein who saw himself as a later day version of the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar may have had some variety of plants and animals in some of his palaces in Iraq. Anyway I am quite sure that king Solomon did this in his palaces in Israel as well. Solomon is the main writer of Proverbs in the Old Testament which also uses the tree of life figuratively as something longed for and something very satisfying and life-giving.
She (wisdom) is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her. Proverbs 3:18
The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise. Proverbs 11:30
Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life. Proverbs 13:12
A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breech of the spirit. Proverbs 15:4
I couldn't find any more references to the tree of life even figurativel until Revelation when the Bible is talking about the literal tree of life in the New Jerusalem and the New Earth and perhaps the Heavenly Jerusalem believers in God and the Lord Jesus Christ will be going to shortly.
He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God. Revelation 2:7 The overcomer is defined in 1 John 5:4-5.
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 22:2
You may be aware of the 9 fruit of the Holy Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23 but although it reads the fruit of the light consists of ... in Ephesians 5:9 in the New International Version in the King James Version it says the fruit of the Spirit is in all ... as follows: (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Ephesians 5:9 This together with the 9 fruit of the Spirit makes 12 fruit of the Spirit altogether although goodness is repeated. Perhaps this means there are two variations of the fruit of goodness or a double supply. Anyway it is my idea that God gives me peace about sharing that these twelve fruit of the Spirit will be the 12 fruit of the tree of life or at least their spiritual power or effect or quality. The 9 fruit of the Holy Spirit in Galatians 5 are as follows: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance(self-control): against such there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23
Finally there is a last reference to those who have right to the tree of life and those who won't. Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie. Revelation 22:14-15
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