There is such a hush walking through a magnificent redwood forest. The trees tower over you like no others, lifting the breeze far higher than is audible. A carpet of redwood needles causes even the forest critters to seemingly tiptoe while on their business. The only sound is the quiet burble of the stream that the redwoods seemingly spawn. The respectful serenity is unmatched in any Cathedral.
These majestic creations have quite a story to tell. They seemingly need to be born in fire. In fact, where we have suppressed fires, when a redwood falls, other trees have grown faster and choked out the young of the redwood forest. Fires, though, eliminate even the tallest competitors. The redwoods might be scarred but won’t be burned down. In fact, the worst that seems to happen results in a tree that is hollow on the inside. Some hollows are so huge, that one could camp within the tree. The trees are not only fire resistant but rot resistant. One man built a bar within a fallen tree with room for a fair number of people.
One thing that is quite surprising is how small the cones are. Some small pines have foot long cones whereas redwood cones are less than an inch. Within each cone are tiny seeds the size of tomato seeds. Just to think, one of these tiny seeds, when planted becomes a giant redwood tree. Redwoods are called sempervirens which means always living. In this case, when the original tree dies, a ring of secondary trees spring from the roots. This can happen more than once, resulting in larger and larger rings. Though we can’t date them, some could be older than the oldest bristle-cone pine. Truly, the Redwood forest is amazing whether you just go for the awe, or you have a scientific interest.
We are compared to seeds in the bible. Think of your body a resembling a white seed, a black seed , or a brown seed. In heaven, we won’t resemble the seeds at all. Instead, we will be like a giant green plant. There is no comparison between the seed and the tree. Just like the redwood tree, we will be immensely greater than the seed, our current body. Also, similar to the redwood, we will have an imperishable body.
How do we know? With the redwood tree, we can look at the evidence. We can count tree rings and compare to C14 dating, and watch what happens when an old tree is cut down and genetically identical ones spring from the roots. We also have evidence we can look at concerning the future. The Bible tells us to check to see if we have the Holy Spirit, (Rom 8:9, 2 Cor 13:5) which was given to us as a down payment (2 Cor 1:22) assuring us of these promises concerning heaven. So how do we check? Scattered all through the book of I John, there are about 25 pieces of evidence. The book concludes, “These things I have written to you so that you may know you are saved.” (5:13) It is such a great joy just to have these things in ones life, and growing. It is even greater that they give us that sure hope that we have this great future.
Matt 13:31-32, John 12:24, 1 Cor 15:37