Archive for the ‘7th Symbol: Branch’ Category

7th MESSIANIC SYMBOL for the Advent Season: Branch

December 6, 2009

December 7:  Zechariah 6:12

Behold, the man whose name is the Branch: for he shall branch out from his place and he shall build the temple of the Lord (ESV)

We often describe relationships in our families as our family tree. The diagram of these relationships looks like a tree with new branches sprouting off at each level. To try this out draw a tree trunk and write the names of one set of your grandparents in it. Then draw as many branches as the number of their children with each of their names. Draw more branches from these to show their children—these branches would represent you, your brothers and sisters, and cousins.

Zechariah 6:12 begins, “Behold, the man whose name is the Branch.”  This man, called “the Branch,” is Jesus. Jeremiah 23:5 helps us to understand why Jesus is given this name: “’The days are coming,’ declares the Lord, ‘when I will raise up to David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land.’” Just as we are a branch in our family, so Jesus is a branch in the family of David. Both Mary and Joseph were part of David’s family tree. Anyone descended from David would be a part of Israel’s royal line, and from this line would come the righteous king who will “do what is right and just in the land.”  We know we can trust Jesus as our king to do the right thing and to always act in fairness and justice.

The prophecy that the Messiah, or the Branch, would come from David’s family line was fulfilled in Jesus’ birth. Today, Jesus as the Branch is building His temple. The temple of the Lord is made up of all those who believe in Jesus. We, the Church, are part of God’s temple.

According Isaiah 4:2, “In that day the Branch of the Lord will be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the land will be the pride and glory of the survivors of Israel.” The verse begins, “In that day:” a day in the future when Jesus will reign in the New Jerusalem. We are part of the family line of Jesus, the branch of David. We look forward to the day when Jesus returns as King over all the earth.

How bright appears the Morning Star,
With mercy beaming from afar;
The host of heaven rejoices;
O Righteous Branch, O Jesse’s Rod!
Thou Son of man and Son of God!
We, too, will lift our voices:
Jesus, Jesus!
Holy, holy, yet most lowly,
Draw thou near us;
Great Emmanuel, come and hear us.

Rejoice, ye heavens; thou earth, reply;
With praise, ye sinners, fill the sky,
For this his incarnation.
Incarnate God, put forth thy power,
Ride on, ride on, great Conqueror,
Till all know thy salvation.
Amen, Amen!
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!
Praise be given
Evermore, by earth and heaven.

Philip Nicolai (1556-1609)

Thank God for the church, which is the temple that Jesus, the Branch, is building.

Ask God to make us faithful in our service of working with Jesus to build His temple.

Songs of thankfulness and praise,
Jesus, Lord, to Thee we raise,
Manifested by the star
To the sages from afar;
Branch of royal David’s stem
In Thy birth at Bethlehem;
Anthems be to Thee addressed,
God in man made manifest.

Christopher Wordsworth (1807-1885)

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