Archive for Botany

Isaiah 5:6 Lessons in Gardening

Posted in Isaiah with tags , , , , , , , , on June 24, 2012 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 5:6 “And I will lay it waste; it will not be pruned or hoed, but briars and thorns will come up. I will also charge the clouds to rain no rain on it.”

The vineyard has gone from having the best of everything to having nothing. Care is no longer provided for Israel and destruction is coming. God is going to neglect Israel, the vineyard.

Pruning no longer takes place in the vineyard. It is a blessing to being pruned. It is how we grow. Some would think it is best to grow wildly without direction. Growth, whether it is a plant, a nation, or us personally, comes when we are pruned. It is painful to be pruned, but it is necessary.

The vineyard, or Israel, is no longer being hoed. The briars are growing and taking over. Killing off the weeds with a hoe allows the good plants to grow and thrive. Weeds take away nutrients from the soil. In this case, the thorny bushes are choking out the best grape vines.

God is in control of the weather. Rain is withheld from the vegetation. Water is life. We all know what happens when plants do not get water. Think of a yard during the summer when it is hot and dry. There has not been rain for weeks. The land is parched and cracked. The grass is dormant and yellow. The only thing that really grows is weeds. Israel became a deserted wasteland for hundreds of years.

Thorns and briars are growing in the vineyard. Thorns are a reminder and a consequence of the fall of man. It should take us back to the Garden of Eden. Genesis 3:18a “Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you…” This is the first time thorns are mentioned in the Bible. God states thorns are a consequence of Adam’s eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Adam listened to the woman instead to listening to God. God does no more than wives. Thorns were not part of Earth’s original creation. Thorns are a physical reality of not following God’s directives.

Moving forward in time, Christ wore a crown of thorns on the cross. He bore a reminder of sin on his head. He became sin for us. 2 Corinthians 5:21a He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.


Isaiah 2:13 Oaks of Bashon

Posted in Isaiah with tags , , , , on February 4, 2012 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 2:13 And it will be against all the cedars of Lebanon that are lofty and lifted up, against all the oaks of Bashan…

Bashan is the modern day Golan Heights. This would be the area in the far north east corner of modern day Israel. This place is south of modern day Damascus, Syria. Geographical land marks would include a region east of the Jordan River and north of the Arnon River. This territory extended from Gilead in the south to Mount Hermon on the north.

The oak is long-lived and when it grows old or is cut down it has the ability to renew itself, putting out new shoots from the stump or roots that in time develop into a strong tree. The oak tree is a symbol of strength. Two species of oak growing in Israel are deciduous. On the hills of Lower Galilee there exist groves of the Tabor oak (Quercus ithaburensis). This tree is to be seen in the Hurshat Tal in the Huleh valley where there are about 200 giant trees. The trees are about 50 feet high with trunks of 16 ft. or more in circumference.

The people of Tyre made the oars for their ships from the oaks of Bashan (Ezek. 27:6). “Of oaks from Bashan they have made your oars; with ivory they have inlaid your deck of boxwood from the coastlands of Cyprus. Tyre is a town on the Mediterranean coast of modern day Lebanon.

Isaiah 11 talks of a “shoot” from the lineage of Jesse. We know that shoot to be Jesus. Like an oak tree, He was cut down with His death on the cross. We know He is renewed in His resurrected body. We know He will return as a strong leader and rule the world. Isaiah 11:1 Then a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse, and a branch from his roots will bear fruit.

All of this said these trees, like proud men, are coming down.

Isaiah 2:13 Cedars of Lebanon

Posted in Isaiah with tags , , , , on January 29, 2012 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 2:13 And it will be against all the cedars of Lebanon that are lofty and lifted up, against all the oaks of Bashan…

These trees begin a list of items that were revered in Isaiah’s day as great or a show of strength. Lebanon is the country north of Israel on the Mediterranean Sea. Today on Lebanon’s flag is the very Cedar of Lebanon. These trees grow primarily in the mountains of the Mediterranean region. They grow up to 130 feet tall with a trunk of up to 8 feet in diameter. The wood of the cedar is disease resistant and slow to decay. This is a stout tree.

The first mention of cedar wood in the Bible comes in Leviticus 14:1-7. The context is the cleansing of Leprosy. Specifically noted in Leviticus 14:4 then the priest shall give orders to take two live clean birds and cedar wood and a scarlet string and hyssop for the one who is to be cleansed. God recommends the use of cedar wood for the cleansing of a skin condition. This seems to be an odd request? Remember, Moses wrote this approximately 1,400 years before Jesus.

Cedars are by nature antiseptic and have always been used to disinfect wounds and to promote healing. Volatile oils in cedars have the ability to open up the blood vessels and deliver more immune cells to the damaged region, which in turn speeds the healing process. For the most part, cedars are associated with skin healing and the treatment of arthritic joints. The cedars are also used to treat warty conditions of the skin due to the tannins and flavonoids found in the wood. These chemicals attack abnormal tissue and leave normal tissue unmolested, thus warts disappear and the normal tissue remains unscathed. Information obtained from

How would Moses and the Jews know about the healing power of the cedar? God’s word.

Cedar is the chosen wood of God’s temple. The temple built by Solomon was primarily made of cedar. 1 Kings 6 gives significant detail regarding the temple.

Verse 9-10 So he built the house and finished it; and he covered the house with beams and planks of cedar. He also built the stories against the whole house, each five cubits high; and they were fastened to the house with timbers of cedar.

Verse 15a Then he built the walls of the house on the inside with boards of cedar; from the floor of the house to the ceiling he overlaid the walls on the inside with wood…

Verse 16a He built twenty cubits on the rear part of the house with boards of cedar from the floor to the ceiling;

Verse 18 There was cedar on the house within, carved in the shape of gourds and open flowers; all was cedar, there was no stone seen.

Verse 20b He also overlaid the altar made of cedar.

Verse 36 He built the inner court with three rows of cut stone and a row of cedar beams.

All of this said these trees, like proud men, are coming down. Psalm 29:5 confirms this fact. The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars; Yes, the LORD breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon.

Genesis 1:11-13 Point of View Applied

Posted in Creation with tags , , , , on July 18, 2011 by paulthepoke

Genesis 1:11-13 Then God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation: plants yielding seed, and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit after their kind with seed in them”; and it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed after their kind, and trees bearing fruit with seed in them, after their kind; and God saw that it was good. There was evening and there was morning, a third day.

What happens when modern science fails to make sense? What happens when modern science’s view of the world does not agree with physical evidence? There are many of these instances. The point is not to tell any one what to think, but to investigate and analyze. Science has real issues of credibility when it comes to a creation explanation and their time line.

The concept chosen to illustrate the point is a flowering orchid plant. Evolutionary science would tell us that life started in the oceans. Plants came to be on the land from green algae that evolved and adapted from the ocean. The first fossils of plants were noted approximately 400 million years ago. Seed plants evolved from ferns. At this point, there appears to be some debate among the science community. According to evolution, the age of flowering plants is from 26-112 million years old. Now that is not very specific and this variance is by and large accepted as fact. Does any one else find that curious? This is what is taught in text books.

Specifically, a mass of orchid pollen was found on the back of an extinct bee in a fossil. Upon further investigation, the orchid pollen in the fossil (allegedly 15-20 million years old) tested could be found in modern day orchids. The questions beg to be asked. How come these orchids have not evolved with other life? 15-20 million years and orchids have not changed? They existed then as they are today? Creation: Facts of Life, Evolution Wilts in Light of Flowering Plants, Biologist Gary E. Parker, .

Darwin himself in his 1859 book The Origin of the Species did not actually address how species originated. The creation of species he later called an “abominable mystery.”

In 1993, Colin Patterson of the prestigious British Museum of Natural History also admitted the origin of the angiosperms (flowering plants) remained an “abominable mystery”. The origin of species was not understood to Charles Darwin and not much has changed with modern science. Congruence between Molecular and Morphological Phylogenies, Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics. Vol. 24, 1993, p. 170.

This is a classic example of science being a belief system or a religion. It has to do with one’s view of the world. To make the claim of “fact” on the origin of species because of assumptions with a loose and flexible timeline is an incredible leap of faith.

This example makes sense through the prism of the Biblical account of creation. Life was created on land first and not in the water. Plants were created mature and fully functional on Day 3. Insects were created on Day 6. With a three day gap, plants can survive until insects arrive for pollination. The orchid pollen and flower has not changed from the fossil to today because they continue to reproduce “after their kind”.  Fossils were left due to a flood event. There is no evolution or transitional species in the fossil record. The age of the earth is 6,000 to 10,000 years old and not billions of years old.

Based on the observable data in this scenario, what makes more sense?

Genesis 1:11-13 Botany Created

Posted in Creation with tags , , , , , on July 7, 2011 by paulthepoke

Genesis 1:11-13 Then God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation: plants yielding seed, and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit after their kind with seed in them”; and it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed after their kind, and trees bearing fruit with seed in them, after their kind; and God saw that it was good. There was evening and there was morning, a third day.

It is on the third day of creation with the development of plant life that science gets turned upside down. This is where what one believes determines how one sees the world. People will see the world through one of these two prisms. The following observations are courtesy of Ken Ham.

Bible Life was created on the land first with plants.

Science: Life started in the oceans.

Bible: Plants were created before

Science: Plants after the sun.

Bible: Plants were created on Day 3; Insects were created on Day 6

Science: Plants and insects evolved together mutual benefit.

Bible: Land plants were first.

Science: Sea organisms were first.

Bible:  Atmosphere was created before plants.

Science: Plants produced oxygen rich atmosphere.

Bible: Fruit trees were created before fish.

Science: First fish evolved long before fruit trees.

Bible: Simple plants before fruit trees.

Science: Fruit trees before other plants.

Bible: Trees before land animals.

Science: Land animals before trees.

One reason God made the plants first is they were intended to be food. The planet was created for animal life and man so there would be a food source available immediately. Plants, fruits, and vegetables were created mature and ready to eat. Genesis 1:29-30 Then God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you; and to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the sky and to every thing that moves on the earth which has life, I have given every green plant for food”; and it was so. Man was created to be a vegetarian. Animal life was created to be vegetarian. God did not approve man being a carnivore until after the flood which is approximately 2,000 years after creation (Timeline provided by Ken Ham).

God created the world in His order. God’s order is not the same as science. Isaiah 55:8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” declares the LORD.

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