Saturday, August 20, 2016

Jacob 5:74-75 -- On Growing Our Goodness

"And thus they labored, with all diligence, according to the commandments of the Lord of the vineyard, even until the bad had been cast away out of the vineyard, and the Lord had preserved unto himself that the trees had become again the natural fruit; and they became like unto one body; and the fruits were equal; and the Lord of the vineyard had preserved unto himself the natural fruit, which was most precious unto him from the beginning.
And it came to pass that when the Lord of the vineyard saw that his fruit was good, and that his vineyard was no more corrupt, he called up his servants, and said unto them: Behold, for this last time have we nourished my vineyard; and thou beholdest that I have done according to my will; and I have preserved the natural fruit, that it is good, even like as it was in the beginning. And blessed art thou; for because ye have been diligent in laboring with me in my vineyard, and have kept my commandments, and have brought unto me again the natural fruit, that my vineyard is no more corrupted, and the bad is cast away, behold ye shall have joy with me because of the fruit of my vineyard."
Jacob 5:74-75

I love this allegory.  Jacob is quoting Zenos, who in this allegory is talking about the world.  The world is a vineyard.  He goes through and talks about how the Lord of the vineyard takes care of the olive trees, and how some of the fruit was corrupt and some was good, and what happens in different parts of the vineyard corresponds to the history of the world.  At one point none of the fruit was good, which we presume was the apostasy, but the Lord of the vineyard's servant (Christ) convinces him to spare it a little longer.  So they go on a mission to graft the branches that they had moved back into the mother tree, and they determine to prune the bad branches according as the good will grow.  In these verses, they have succeeded.  There is no more bad fruit in the vineyard.

This part of the allegory hasn't happened yet in our history, which means that we are in the middle before the vineyard has become uncorrupted.  God and his servants are grafting the branches and nourishing the trees, and we are the fruit.  As more good fruit grows, the bad branches are pruned away to make room for the good to grow.

After these verses it talks about the Millennium, which starts when all the fruit is good.  And then, when the bad fruit once again appears in the garden, at the end of the Millennium, that's the end, when the Vineyard is burned.  Of course there is more after that, since we have eternity in front of us, but that is where the allegory ends.

I think where we are in the allegory offers a lot of hope.  It means that we aren't just in a world where things are getting worse and worse, and eventually everything blows up.  Instead, the more good grows, the more evil will be removed in order to make room for the good.  Good has unlimited potential, and evil's time is numbered.  We just have to expand, and reach, and become better and stronger and help the people around us to be as well.  The better we get, the closer we get to the perfect day when the vineyard isn't corrupt anymore.  Where we've learned to be Zion people, to have no poor among us, to truly love and lift and serve the people around us, and follow Christ's path.

Today, let's remember that the future is bright... that God is making room for us.  Let's determine to be part of the wave of good that will purify the vineyard, and not to be part of the evil that needs to be purged.  We have a choice: let's use it to help the Lord in his work.  Let's make the world better, and be our absolute best selves.  Let's promote good in everything we do and say and are.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Total Pageviews