Trees of the Bible Part 1: The Branch of Jesse

Recently, I was reading an article that stated that trees were the most mentioned living creature in the Bible after humans. Doing some digging myself by looking up the words tree, forest, wood, branch, bough, oak, cedar, palm, and including items made from wood such as rod, staff, and cross, I found over 800 references to trees in the Bible.
Trees are often used as a symbol of all plant-life. It is easy to see why when we stand outside and look at the magnificent trees standing tall and strong around us. Trees are one of the few plants that can live for hundreds of years, unlike many plants like grass and flowers that die quickly.
Jesus is even compared to a tree. In Isaiah 11:1, Jesus is described as a Branch or a new trunk growing out of an old stump that had been chomped down. Have you ever seen that happen? A tree is cut down and it seems dead, but then the next spring, tiny shoots start growing out of that stump.
In the passage, this was the hope for the faithful in Israel and Judah, who had seen and would see their nations destroyed. Even though it looked like the line of David would be cut off, the Saviour would still grow from that stump to come and save his people from their sins.
During Christmas, we spend a lot of time with trees. There’s some debate on the origin of the Christmas tree. Some say it started with pagan festivals. Others say it was started by Martin Luther. Whatever the origin, let us look at our beautiful Christmas trees and remember the true Tree and Branch, our Savior Jesus Christ, who came when there was no hope for spiritually dead mankind and gave life to his chosen people.