Lucia's Blog: IN THE GARDEN
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Monday, March 29, 2021

IN THE GARDEN

"But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.”  
1 John 1:7


The word "garden" portrays a lovely place with beautiful flowers.  In Gen. 2:8-16, we read of a truly beautiful garden, the Garden of Eden, filled with beautiful flowers and great beauty.  Lately, I have been working in my garden, pulling weeds and making the soil clear for new flowers and seeds.  As I was in my garden, this beautiful song kept coming to me, and I could not stop singing it with all my heart.  So I decided to do a short study on it.  Oh, the joys of the garden!  I enjoy working in my garden, though it is strenuous work.  But it is all worth it!  

Our song, “In The Garden,” compels us to come to our Lord to walk with Him hand in hand like two friends in complete fellowship.  The language in the song describes our relationship with Him in figurative language.  The song can be meaningful when we understand it in the context of Scripture and make a spiritual application. 

The song speaks of the garden tomb in which Jesus was buried and where Mary Magdalene came early that morning.  This account is found in John 20:1-13.

Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. 2 So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, ‘They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” 3 So Peter went out with the other disciple, and they were going toward the tomb. 4 Both of them were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5 And stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in. 6 Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen cloths lying there, 7 and the face cloth, which had been on Jesus' head, not lying with the linen cloths but folded up in a place by itself. 8 Then the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; 9 for as yet they did not understand the Scripture, that he must rise from the dead. 10 Then the disciples went back to their homes.  But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look into the tomb. 12 And she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had lain, one at the head and one at the feet. 13 They said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, ‘They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.’”


Just as Mary Magdalene was able to come to the Lord directly, so can we come to Him and let Him dwell in our hearts through faith, rooted and grounded in love.

“So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love.”  (Eph. 3:17)


We can confidently speak to our Lord through prayers in the garden of our hearts.  

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”  (Hebrews 4:15-17)


While Jesus was in the garden, He spoke to Mary.  Jesus’ words are recorded in John 20:14-16

Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?’ Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, ‘Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.’ 16 Jesus said to her, 'Mary.'  She turned and said to him in Aramaic, 'Rabboni!' (which means Teacher).’”


Although Jesus does not speak directly to us today as He did back then, He does speak to us still through His revealed Word.  

“Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.”  (Matthew 24:35)

“The one who rejects me and does not receive my words has a judge; the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day.”  (John 12:48)

But we must listen to His words to receive salvation and eternal life.  

“He who has ears, let him hear.”  (Matthew 13:9)

"He was still speaking when, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, 'This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.'"  (Matthew 17:5)

“Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world.”  (Hebrews 1:1-2)


As we read John 20:16-18, it is obvious that Mary wants to cling to Jesus and keep Him there with her.  Notice what Jesus told Mary as she was clinging to Him tightly.  

“Jesus said to her, 'Mary.' She turned and said to him in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher). 17 Jesus said to her, ‘Do not cling to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’ 18 Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, ‘I have seen the Lord”—and that he had said these things to her.’”


When Jesus said to Mary in the present tense, "Do not cling to Me," He implied, "Do not keep clinging to Me"  (Jn. 20:17-18).  You see, Mary wanted to stay with Jesus in the garden, but He had a task for her to do.  Jesus wanted her to go and tell the disciples that He had risen.  Today is no different, for He also has a commission for us.  He is telling Christians to go and tell the world about salvation available through Him.  Christians, He wants us to proclaim His Gospel Message to everyone to be saved and not be condemned!

And he said to them, ‘Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.’”  (Mark 16:15-16)


Those of us who love to work in our gardens want to see great and beautiful flowers.  I love to spend time in my garden, contemplating its majestic beauty.  And though we gardeners seem to want to stay in our gardens forever, we must reflect in our own private garden of prayer and meditation.  Jesus likewise is compelling us to go and tell others about Him as He did Mary. 

“For if I preach the gospel, that gives me no ground for boasting. For necessity is laid upon me. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!”  (1 Cor. 9:16)


Personal communion with Christ brings joy as we walk with Him, and He tells us we are His own. The garden in our beautiful song represents the time we spend talking to God in prayer, listening to His words through Bible study and meditation of His Word.  And though praying and studying God’s Word is vital to having fellowship with Him, we still must share His Message with others.  Simultaneously, we must fulfill our duties to Him, come to Him in His own designated way to have communion, and thus walk with Him "In The Garden."

"And He walks with me, and He talks with me, And He tells me I am His own,
And the joy we share as we tarry there, None other has ever known."  


I hope the beautiful words of the song, "In The Garden," will lift your soul the way it does mine.  


I come to the garden alone, While the dew is still on the roses; 
And the voice I hear, falling on my ear, The Son of God discloses.

He speaks, and the sound of His voice Is so sweet the birds hush their singing, 
And the melody that He gave to me, Within my heart is ringing.

I’d stay in the garden with Him Though the night around me be falling, 
But He bids me go; through the voice of woe, His voice to me is calling.

Chorus,

And He walks with me, and He talks with me, And He tells me I am His own,
And the joy we share as we tarry there, None other has ever known.




Luci


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