March 16, 2021
Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city by the gates. Revelation 22:14 ESV
I love the imagery of trees and their symbolic significance in Scripture—particularly the “tree of life.” The Bible begins its narrative with trees in the Garden and then describes the tragic fall of humankind where we can no longer eat from the tree of life. John, however, describes God’s renewal in this last chapter of the Bible: a new Eden where the tree’s leaves produce healing and its different kinds of fruit produce sustenance in season. In this verse, we are reminded that the tree of life is only available to those who have washed their robes. And the only way we can wash our robes (in righteousness) is through the blood of Christ.
While John’s Revelation points us to the return of our Lord, in part we experience the blessings of the Risen Christ, the Tree of Life, here and now. He who was hung on a tree has invited us to come to his table and eat from the Tree of Life that brings forgiveness, healing, and access to the eternal City of God. Hallelujah!
Rev. Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling