In the middle of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bore twelve manner of fruits…
In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. Here is organized life - "a tree." Here are the various elements and gases brought into an organic whole - a tree; the product and provision of vital force. Look at this tree in three aspects.
I. AS CENTRALLY ROOTED. "In the midst of the street of it." Between the street and the river on each side there grows this majestic tree, well fed and well protected, in the very midst of the holy metropolis. Between the water and the street the whole side is lined with the tree of life. Christianity is a life well rooted and well guarded. It is an incorruptible seed, that "liveth and abideth forever." "The sun will not smite it by day, nor the moon by night."
II. IT IS ESSENTIALLY VITAL. It is the "tree of life." It is not the mere form of life, or the product of life; it is life itself. Life of all kinds, even vegetable and animal, is, say men of science, inextinguishable. It is a spark that can never be put out, that will burn through the ages. This is true of this spiritual life, this life of Christianity in the soul. There is no indivisible atom nor any unquenchable life.
III. IT IS MARVELLOUSLY FRUITFUL. "Which bare twelve manner of fruits." It has twelve fruit seasons; that is, it yields twelve crops instead of one. How abundantly fertile is living Christianity in the soul! What new thoughts, affections, resolves, are constantly evolved, one growing out of the other in rapid succession and endless variety, grain coming out of grain, and boundless harvests sleeping in their shells!
IV. IT IS ALWAYS SEASONABLE. "Yielding her fruit every month." All life everywhere has its seasons, and in all seasons its particular fruits - spring, summer, autumn, winter. The fruits of living Christianity in the soul are always seasonable. "Be not weary in well doing: for in due season ye shall reap, if ye faint not."
V. IT IS UNIVERSALLY HEALING. "The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations." Even the leaves of this tree are salutary to all. All the nations of the earth are morally diseased. Their disease is a leprosy - the leprosy of sin. Living Christianity in the soul is the antidote. - D.T.
Parallel VersesKJV: In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.
WEB: in the middle of its street. On this side of the river and on that was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruits, yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.