NW01104 |Don’t go under the apple tree

Song of Songs 8:5

 Who is this coming up from the wilderness,Leaning upon her beloved?I awakened you under the apple tree.There your mother brought you forth;There she who bore you brought you forth. NKJV

The magnificent Boogie Woogie ‘Andrews Sisters’ burst onto the American and world music scene in the first half of the twentieth century and remain one of the most talented and bestselling all girl vocal groups of all time. My favorite song of theirs is featured in the 1942 movie, ‘Private Buckaroo’  and is called, of course, ‘Don’t sit under the Apple Tree,’ the obvious implication, in lover separated World War II being, ‘don’t have intimate relations with anyone else but me. Be faithful until I return.’ Or, as mountain man Jimmie Stewart in ‘How the West was won’ might say, ‘don’t go a visiting that varmint!’

The fruit bearing tree, the apple tree or maybe even the orange tree, for the word might also be translated that way, is if course figurative of that great tree in the Garden of God, Eastward in a place called Eden, now guarded by angels and off limits to humans, known still as the ‘tree of the knowledge of good and evil.’ Some people have suggested that when Eve ‘ate’ of the fruit of that tree with the Serpent that she engaged in sexual activity with the devil and cuckold Adam was also induced to do the same, either with him or before him. The picture of course is both a dirty and an horrific one, but might indeed be sufficient to better understand the fall of man and a paradise lost. Look now, the apple tree is not just a symbol of love and romance; it is symbolic of full sexual union, of joyful and ecstatic impregnation, of coupling, and of one flesh becoming, of creative union, even of fruit bearing.

God’s plan has always been one man for one woman. Faithful union. Private union. Full union. Fruitful union. Personal union. Intimate union. Indeed, this very union has and always will be symbolic of His union with His people. This is why, any breakage of this union, any other joining to idols, any desertion of the same is constantly and consistently referred to by Him as adultery and the practitioners of the same as whores. You see, the greatest sin in all the world, is to betray a faithful love. Yet, it is the oldest sin, it is the sin of the ages, it is the sin of the Laodicean age. Many people, many leaders, many miracles workers will stand before God and be denounced by Him as strangers to Him. First love, passionate love, faithful love, is valued by God above all other things!

If you have entertained the devil in your whoredoms, you must immediatelly desists and repent of the same. Tell God what you have done, and what you have become.

My message tonight is brief and to the point. Don’t be a whore! Don’t go under the apple tree with anyone else but Jesus. If your love is on money, you are  a whore. If your love is on respect, you are a whore. If your love is on power, you are  a whore. If your love is on self, self-satisfaction, self-preservation, self-promotion, you are a whore. Hello, hello, hello, how low do you think you can go? Do you think with the lights out that your actions are not seen? That they are somehow less dangerous? In deserting God, you are simply entertaining the devil in your mixed love mullato madness. God must be your all in all. Your total love. There is room for no other lover.

If you have entertained the devil in your whoredoms, you must immediately desists and repent of the same. Tell God what you have done, and what you have become. Through the shed blood of  Jesus Christ, He shall forgive you, He shall cleanse you and bring you back to Himself and in future faithfulness, you shall no more play the whore.

It would appear to God that this is very serious stuff indeed, so dear friend, don’t go under the apple tree with anyone else but Him!

Listen:  The Lord said also to me in the days of Josiah the king: “Have you seen what backsliding Israel has done? She has gone up on every high mountain and under every green tree, and there played the harlot. And I said, after she had done all these things, ‘Return to Me.’ But she did not return. And her treacherous sister Judah saw it. Then I saw that for all the causes for which backsliding Israel had committed adultery, I had put her away and given her a certificate of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah did not fear, but went and played the harlot also. So it came to pass, through her casual harlotry, that she defiled the land and committed adultery with stones and trees. And yet for all this her treacherous sister Judah has not turned to Me with her whole heart, but in pretense,” says the Lord.  Then the Lord said to me, “Backsliding Israel has shown herself more righteous than treacherous Judah. Go and proclaim these words toward the north, and say: ‘Return, backsliding Israel,’ says the Lord; ‘I will not cause My anger to fall on you. For I am merciful,’ says the Lord; ‘I will not remain angry forever.  Only acknowledge your iniquity, That you have transgressed against the Lord your God, And have scattered your charms To alien deities under every green tree, And you have not obeyed My voice,’ says the Lord.  “Return, O backsliding children,” says the Lord; “for I am married to you. I will take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion. 15 And I will give you shepherds according to My heart, who will feed you with knowledge and understanding. (Jer 3:6-15 NKJ Jer 3:6-15)

Pray: O God of love, I approach You with all the encouragements derived from Your great character revealed in Your Holy Word, for I know that You are good and full of mercy. Therefore, O God my husband, have mercy upon me, for I have ungratefully received Your  benefits, have little improved my privileges, have made light of spiritual things, and  disregarded Your warnings and Your messages,  even the admonitions of friends, and the good leadings of providence. My adultery is such that I deserve that Your kingdom be taken away from me! Yet Lord, I do freely confess my sin with deep feeling, with mournful lamentation,  with a broken heart, a contrite spirit, and with self-abhorrence, and self-condemnation, and with utter self-despair. Give me relief by Jesus my hope, grant me O God, faith in His name of Savior, and forgiveness by his blood, and strength by his presence, and holiness by his Spirit, and let me love You now with all my cleansed and focused heart. Amen and let it be so

(Derived from ‘O God of Love’ out of ‘The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers,’ edited by Arthur Bennett)

 

 

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