There is an interesting reference in Hosea where the Lord says, “I will be as the dew unto Israel. He shall grow as the lily, and cast forth his roots as Lebanon.” (Hosea 14:5)
Though said primarily of Israel, these words also describe the beginning of everything in the experience of God’s children. Dewfall is altogether vital to the life and growth of trees and flowers, and to us the Lord Himself promises to be “as the dew.” Everything in our life as believers comes to us from Christ as our source. He is made unto us wisdom, righteousness, holiness; He has given us all things that have to do with His Life and His Likeness; He has given to us exceeding great and precious promises, enabling us to partake of His Divine Nature. Yes, everything! (1 Cor. 1:30; 2 Peter 1:3)
“I will be as the dew,” He affirms, and in the latter part of the verse Hosea shows how life, with this as its supply, takes on a mysterious dual character. In it the blossom of the Lily is wonderfully linked with the roots of the Cedar: frail beauty and massive strength united in a single plant! Such miracles are wrought by Heaven’s ‘dewfall’ alone. Here, united in the child of God, are two contrasting characteristics. Above ground, as it were, is the simple life of trust and faith represented by the Lily. That is what people see. Yet buried deep down out of sight, giving to this frail plant a wholly unsuspected strength, are the massive roots of the Cedar. Here surely is the paradox of a life in which the Cross is known. Outwardly it appears fragile as the Lily blooming on the earth, but secretly there is much more hidden in the soil. How much of our lives is seen? When others look on the surface, do they see all there is? Or is there something more? Do we have in the unseen a secret history with God? Others take account only of the Lily blooming in its weakness. God is concerned with the roots, that they shall be Cedar-like in strength. (Adapted from Watchman Nee)
Roots are essential to the life of a plant. Most roots grow underground, anchoring the plant in the soil. They also absorb water and minerals that the plant needs to grow. In addition, many roots store food for later use by the plant.
This is another picture the Bible uses to help us understand the workings of God in our lives. Remember the blessed one whose TRUST and HOPE is in the Lord, described by Jeremiah? The Prophet goes on to describe him thus: “…he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, that spreads out her ROOTS by the river. He shall not fear when heat comes, but her leaf shall be green; he shall not be anxious in the year of drought, nor cease from yielding fruit.” A Proverb assures us that “the root of the righteous shall not be moved.”
(Ps. 1:3 & Jer. 17:7, 8; Prov. 12:3)
The Apostle Paul found this to be a very appropriate analogy when he admonishes us in his letter to the Colossian Church: “As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, walk in Him, ROOTED and built up IN HIM, and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.” And again, to the Ephesian Church, praying “that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith, that you, being ROOTED and GROUNDED IN LOVE, may be strong to apprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height, and to experience the Love of Christ which passes knowledge…”
(Col. 2:6,7; Eph. 3:17-19)
Isaiah used an interesting prophetic phrase concerning Judah, but nonetheless appropriate to our subject:- They shall “take root downward, and bear fruit upward.” (Isa. 37:31)
As the believer’s spiritual ‘roots’ grow ever deeper in the Life and Love of God, drawing sustenance from His Word and strength from His Spirit, the life flows upward to produce the beautiful ‘blossoms’ or flavorful ‘fruit.’ Through the Holy Spirit the Lord provides all things necessary for our growth, development, maturity and fruitfulness.
Rooted in the Love of God,
And grounded in His Word,
Drawing Life from richest sod;
Agape from the Lord.
Anchored in Amazing Grace,
And in His Word secure,
Held in His Divine Embrace,
Safe from the world’s allure.
Settled in the Peace of God;
Fixed in His Faith made mine;
Strengthened by His Guiding Rod;
Kept by His Pow’r Divine.
(c) Eulene Hope Moores
As we place our TRUST and our HOPE in the Lord, we shall be like that tree planted by the waters of Life, rooted and grounded by the river of God, and we shall not fear whate’er may come. (Jer. 17:7)
In Agape, Eulene