The Fragrance and Stature
“As for the living bird, he shall take it,
and the cedar wood,
and the scarlet, and the hyssop,
and shall dip them and the living bird
in the blood of the bird that was killed
over the running water”
The cedar in the scriptures speaks of stature and character. In the description presented in the Law of the Leper the cedar-wood is immersed in the blood-water of the dead bird. This is a prophetic promise to the leper of a redeemed stature and character that is to arise out of the ministration of the blood and water. It is in us being forgiven and cleansed from our leprous condition that the new man will arise and begin to grow into the likeness of the second Adam.
“Forasmuch as ye know
that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things,
as silver and gold, from your vain conversation
received by tradition from your fathers…”
1 Peter 1:18
The cedar-wood not only speaks of stature and character but of a substance that is fragrant and impervious to rot and decay. It is a life resilient to the decaying forces of the world and maintains its fragrance in all circumstances. This is not the product of self-effort; it is the sweet odor sent forth from the cedar because that is its nature. It is essential for us to understand that only by virtue of the new birth are men capable of being partakers of the divine nature! As we believe and live within the promises of God, by faith, there springs a Nature which enables us to live beyond the resources of our miserable selves. The dregs of that old Adamic life must give way to the fountain of His life flowing through our own. This fragrance and immunity to the decay of this world is dependent upon the life of the Son becoming our source. Only as we live as a branch drawing in and abiding in the life of the vine will the fruit of the Spirit abound in us.
“I am the true vine,
and my Father is the husbandman.
Every branch in me that beareth not fruit
he taketh away:
and every branch that beareth fruit,
he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.
Now ye are clean through the word
which I have spoken unto you.
Abide in me, and I in you.
As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself,
except it abide in the vine; no more can ye,
except ye abide in me.
I am the vine, ye are the branches:
He that abideth in me, and I in him,
the same bringeth forth much fruit:
for without me ye can do nothing”
Spiritual fruit within the life of any one in Christ is the result of relationship not teaching. It is as we obey His voice within our own hearts that the fruit of the Spirit is formed. Those who do not obey cannot abide within the wonder of the flow of His life. In the parable above (John 15:2) even the branches must maintain their place of abiding in Him by bearing fruit! If there is no fruit, there is no flow. Men who hold to religious teachings and doctrines may have an appearance of a branch but the vitality of the life of the vine no longer flows. Fruit is the unconscious expression of the nature of a thing.
“Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them”
We are not to know men by their words but by their fruits. The fragrance of the cedar is unmistakable.
“Being filled with the fruits of righteousness,
which are by Jesus Christ,
unto the glory and praise of God”
Amazingly the fragrance of the cedar lingers long after it is dead for it is an expression of God’s nature. Men and women who have lived and walked in the power of an abiding relationship continue to minister the things of God long after they have passed on from this world.
“A good man leaveth an inheritance
to his children’s children”
“By faith Abel offered unto God
a more excellent sacrifice than Cain,
by which he obtained witness that he was righteous,
God testifying of his gifts:
and by it he being dead yet speaketh”