Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The Tree Parable

By Mary Vee
Judges 9

Jotham, the youngest son of Gideon told this parable
to the people of Shechem:

One day a group of trees decided to meet to talk talking about their problems. They shouted, whined and complained.  After several hours, one tree suggested, "Lets appoint a king to rule over us. If we had a king, he could solve our problems." 

The other trees clapped their leaves together. "Great idea! Let's ask Olive to be our king."


Not one of those trees remembered the great Lord God who created every root, trunk, branch, and leaf. 

The leaders of the trees wandered up the hill to speak with Olive.  "We need a king to rule over us. Will you be our king?"


Olive rolled his branches. "Seriously? You want me to stop making olives which are pressed into oil and used to honor God and men and go to sway over sway over trees?  I think not!"


The leaders of the trees lumbered back to the meeting. "He said, 'No.'"


The trees grumbled for a few minutes until one suggested, "Lets ask Fig to be our king."


Once again, not one of those trees remembered the great Lord God who created every root, trunk, branch, and leaf. 


The leaders hiked up the mountain to speak with Fig. "We need a king to rule over us. Please be our king and solve our problems."


Fig smiled and shook his trunk in his usual kind way. "I couldn't stop making sweet figs to be your king. What would the people eat instead of my good fruit?" His branches shook as he gently laughed. "I am not your king."


The leaders of the trees shuffled back to the meeting. "He said, 'No.'"


The trees twiddled their branches for a few minutes until one suggested, "Lets ask Vine to be our king."


Once again, not one of those trees remembered the great Lord God who created every root, trunk, branch, and leaf. 


The leaders of the trees proudly paraded through the valley to speak with Vine. "We need a king to rule over us. You must be our king."


Vine crept toward the tree trunks and wound himself around their trunks. He looked into their knothole eyes. "You want me to stop making juicy grapes which cheers both God and men to sway over you trees?" The vine squeezed a little tighter. "No way."


The leaders tugged free of the vine then trudged back to the meeting. "He said, "No.'"


The trees at the meeting wrung their branches. "Who is left to ask?"


One tree answered, "Let's all go to ask Bramble to be out king."  The trees clapped their leaves to the great idea.


Sadly, not one of those trees remembered the great Lord God who created every root, trunk, branch, and leaf. 


The trees hiked through the swamps to speak with Bramble. "You must come and reign over us!"


Bramble snickered. "If in truth you anoint me as king over you then come and take shelter in my shade. But if not, let fire come to burn all trees."


The trees chose their king.


******************************
1. Why did the trees want a king?
2. Why did Olive tree say, "No"?
3. Why did Fig tree say, "No"?
4. Why did Vine say, "No"?
5. Who did the trees forget and as a result didn't want for their king? 
6. What did the trees choose?


One of Gideon's sons, Abimelech, decided he wanted to be king. He managed to kill all of his brothers except Jotham. He convinced the people of Shechem to make him king. Jotham used this parable to let them know they did not choose wisely.

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