Random Word – Oak

Random Word Oak

There are multiple Hebrew words for the oak tree, all of which trace back to the same root word.  The strength of the oak makes it a shadow picture of God as can be seen by the following:

oak hebrew

On multiple occasions, God would appear to man under or by oak trees (Genesis 18:1-2; Judges 6:11-12, 19-20).  It was also under an oak that Joshua set up a stone as a witness of God’s Word (Joshua 24:26-27).
As a result of the oak being connected to God, oaks were became used for idolatrous purposes.  Jacob hid his families’ idols under an oak by Shechem (Genesis 35:4) and later Israel would commit idolatry under oaks like their neighbors (Isaiah 1:28; Ezekiel 6:13; Hosea 4:13).  The oak was sacred to the pagan gods Zeus and Thor and was linked to the pagan tree of life in Baltic and Norse mythology as well as in Druidism.  The word druid traces back to the oak as it was a symbol of “strong knowledge.”  Degenerate man corrupted the shadow picture of Messiah embedded within the oak tree and turned it into an idol.


Perhaps the most important reference to the oak tree in connection to Messiah is seen in Isaiah 6:13.
Isa 6:13  But yet in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return, and shall be eaten: as a teil tree, and as an oak, whose substance is in them, when they cast their leaves: so the holy seed shall be the substance thereof.

Here, the prophet Isaiah connects the Messiah and His body to an oak tree.  The word substance in this verse comes from the Hebrew word מצבת ‘matsevet’ which literally means the stock or root of a tree.  This word is also translated as pillar, as in the pillar which Jacob set up when he proclaimed the place upon which the ladder to heaven appeared to him as Bethel, the house of God (Genesis 28:10-22; 35:14-15).  The living house of God is His people (Matthew 16:18; 1 Timothy 3:15-16; Hebrews 3:1-6; 1 Peter 2:4-5; Ephesians 2:11-22).
Keil & Delitszch commentary
It shall happen as with the terebinth and oak. These trees were selected as illustrations, not only because they were so near akin to evergreens, and produced a similar impression, or because there were so many associations connected with them in the olden times of Israel’s history; but also because they formed such fitting symbols of Israel, on account of their peculiar facility for springing up again from the root (like the beech and nut, for example), even when they had been completely felled…Of this tree, that had been deprived of its trunk and crown, there was still a mazzebeth kindred form of mazzebah), i.e., a root-stump (truncus) fast in the ground. The tree was not yet entirely destroyed; the root-stump could shoot out and put forth branches again. And this would take place: the root-stump of the oak or terebinth, which was a symbol of Israel, was “a holy seed.” The root-stump was the remnant that had survived the judgment, and this remnant would become a seed, out of which a new Israel would spring up after the old had been destroyed (Matthew 3:10)…Thus in a few weighty words is the way sketched out, which God would henceforth take with His people. The passage contains an outline of the history of Israel to the end of time. Israel as a nation was indestructible, by virtue of the promise of God; but the mass of the people were doomed to destruction through the judicial sentence of God, and only a remnant, which would be converted, would perpetuate the nationality of Israel, and inherit the glorious future. This law of a blessing sunk in the depths of the curse actually inflicted, still prevails in the history of the Jews. The way of salvation is open to all. Individuals find it, and give us a presentiment of what might be and is to be; but the great mass are hopelessly lost, and only when they have been swept away will a holy seed, saved by the covenant-keeping God, grow up into a new and holy Israel, which, according to Isa_27:6, will fill the earth with its fruits, or, as the apostle expresses it in Rom_11:12, become “the riches of the Gentiles.”
Messiah is the Holy Seed, the Root of the tree of Israel.

מצבת ‘matsevet’ also means an image, corrupted into the idols of the heathen.  Jesus is the image of God.
2Co 4:4  in whom the god of this age has blinded the thoughts of the unbelieving, so that the brightness of the gospel of the glory of Christ who is the image of God, should not dawn on them.

The congregation of believers are to be the “image” of Messiah
Rom 8:29  because whom He foreknew, He also predestinated to be conformed to the image of His Son, for Him to be the First-born among many brothers.
2Co 3:18  But we all with our face having been unveiled, having beheld the glory of the Lord in a mirror, are being changed into the same image from glory to glory, as from the Lord Spirit.

Believers are specifically spoken of as “oaks” by the prophet Isaiah.
Isa 61:3  To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees {איל -ayil} of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.

The seed of the oak tree is the acorn which continues the shadow picture theme of God the King.  The word acorn comes from the Latin word ‘cornu’ which means a horn.  ‘Cornu’ traces back further to the Hebrew word קרן ‘qeren’ which also means horn (Deuteronomy 33:17).  The English word crown comes from this same Hebrew word as the ancient crown of a king consisted of the horns of an animal such as a ram (1 Samuel 2:10).  Interestingly the Hebrew word for ram is one and the same as the Hebrew word for oak, איל ‘ayal.’  It is through the horns {קרן ‘qeren’} of the ram that Abraham found a substitute for sacrifice, saving Isaac (Genesis 22:13).  Genesis 22 is one of the greatest pictures of the crucifixion of Jesus in all of Scripture and declares that He is the LORD.

blessing 4



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