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Father Len explains why trees are so prominent in the Bible and how they symbolize and reveal the path to eternal life including the choices we need to make and the food we need to eat along the way. He also clarifies what food we’re really praying for in the Lord’s Prayer.
Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom
- The English translation of the Lord’s Prayer is incorrect. When we pray “give us each day our daily bread,” we are not praying for daily bread. What Jesus taught us to pray for is the bread of super substance, the bread of life, which is the Eucharist.
- Trees are a big part of worship and the third most common symbol in the Bible.
- Trees, in the Bible, symbolize and reveal the path to eternal life including the choices we need to make and the food we need to eat along the way.
- From the very beginning of the Bible, there are two types of food. There’s ordinary food that keeps our bodies strong and divine food that feeds our souls. We need both.
- Ordinary food comes from the earth and divine food comes from heaven and the tree of life.
- The cross is the tree of life. When we eat the fruit from the tree of life, the Eucharist, we’re eating the presence of Christ and part of God’s spirit.
- When human beings are cut off from being fed with God’s life, they’re cut off from the source of life.
- Eternal life is connected to eating the fruit from the tree of life.
- The tree of life is a place where humanity gathers to meet God and be fed on God’s life.
- All of life is a choice between eating the fruit from the tree of life or eating the fruit from the tree of good and selfishness.
- Eating the fruit from the tree of good and selfishness brings about a death. It kills the relationship between us and God.
- To get to the tree of life, we have to walk past the tree of good and selfishness. We have to sacrifice our egos, obey the will of God, and see the world as God sees it in order to eat the divine food from the tree of life.
- Eating from the tree of life demands a moral code. God is the only source of true morality. We don’t get to define goodness. We need to see and live as God does.
- In every major moral event in the Bible there are trees present that symbolize the choice between going the way of the tree of life or the way of the tree of selfishness.
- The tree Catholics gather around at every mass is the cross. We gather around that tree to make a commitment to follow the morality of Christ and see the world the way God does.
- To eat from the tree of life is to accept self-sacrifice as our morality. Christ shows us the way by offering himself as a sacrifice. He accepts the cup of suffering. To receive the Eucharist is to accept the teachings of Christ.
- The tree of life is this connection between us and God. Religion is this connection between us and God.
- When we’re making the right moral choices, the Bible gives us a little glimpse of the tree of life. When we’re making the wrong choices, it gives us a glimpse of the tree of selfishness.
- Biblical worship is all about eating the right food. Eating the divine meal from God that gives us eternal life.