Unlimited: If the Root is Holy
May 26, 2023 445
If the part of the dough offered as firstfruits is holy, then the whole batch is holy; if the root is holy, so are the branches (Romans 11:16).
We are often told not to mix metaphors, but Paul does it often. Why? Because one metaphor is never enough to describe how amazing Jesus is!
Paul is here referring to Jesus Christ, through various metaphors. Jesus is the Bread of Life (John 6:35,48,51.) The bread in the temple also represented Jesus. Jesus is the firstfruits (1 Cor. 15:20), which were also part of the temple service, as well as the “root of Jesse” (Isa. 11:10.)
The idea of the firstfruits comes from Numbers 15:20, which referred to the time of the first harvest. The first time that the people ground meal from the harvested grain, they were to prepare a loaf, and to offer it to the Lord.
Jesus is the Bread of Life and the firstfruits, as well as the “root of Jesse”.
The meaning of these two parallel metaphors, of the firstfruits and the root, is simple and identical. The apostle is telling us that in the same way as God had accepted the first Jewish converts who believed in Jesus, so too every person from among the Jewish people who accepted the Lord would also be accepted themselves.
When we see how God has worked for the salvation of others in the past, it can help us understand how he will work in the future.
Think of the worst “sinner” you know. That person can be saved in the same way you can. It is important to remember that we are all saved in exactly the same way. Have you ever been tempted to think otherwise?