With Spring whispering its arrival, I find it easy to envision leaves budding, blossoms appearing, and succulent, sun-kissed fruit hanging from each apple tree. After meditating on my column below, perhaps you’ll never again look at an apple in the same way. God’s character surely does reveal itself in His creation, including an apple.
ETERNAL PERSPECTIVES by Sally Bair
Nothing tastes better in winter than a juicy apple, reminding us of summer. When we consider the makeup of an apple, we discover it has three major parts: skin, pulp (or meat), and seeds.
The skin of an apple is most vital to its life. It protects, to the degree that if pierced, the apple will begin to soften, shrivel, and eventually become inedible. The meat is the sweetest part, chock-full of nutrients. An apple’s center contains seeds, necessary for propagation and new life.
Many other things of nature also contain three parts, such as an egg. They’re all part of our three-part world of animal, vegetable, and mineral.
The number three is significant in its completeness, both physically and spiritually. God is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. He is all-knowing, all-powerful, and all-seeing. The Old Testament foretells of Jesus as being prophet, priest, and king. The number three is also significant in the death of Jesus. He was crucified at the third hour, darkness filled the earth for three hours, and on the third day He rose from the dead. And with the emergence of His Church and the writings of the New Testament, we learn about Jesus’ three gifts of grace: faith, hope, and love.
We also learn about our greatest enemies—the world, our flesh, and the devil—as well as the three-fold nature of temptation. “All that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.” (1 John 2:16)
When I consider the apple, I think of God our Father as our vital skin which protects us and prolongs our life. When we pierce Him with our apathy, anger, and angst, our spirit diminishes in taste, nutrition, and appearance. In other words, we become ineffectual.
An apple’s meat could be compared to the sweetness and nourishment of Jesus, the Word of Life, our Bread of Life. The seeds of the Holy Spirit promote further growth in our body, soul, and spirit. And as an apple seed may taste bitter, sometimes God’s Spirit disciplines us, giving us knock-me-over-the-head reminders of our sins. These are bitter pills to swallow, yet necessary to our spiritual growth.
Lord, thank You for reminding us that “in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily, and (we) are complete in (You) … the head of all principality and power.” (Colossians 2:9) Be our skin, meat, and seeds as we follow Your will. In Jesus’ name, amen.