He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, and as a root
out of dry ground" (Isaiah 53:2, NKJV).
of the tender plant is an allusion to the "Branch"
of Isaiah 11:1 where the Messiah is identified as a branch
growing out of the roots of Jesse.
plant draws nourishment from the soil in order to grow and
develop into maturity, so the incarnate Christ was to draw
on the wisdom and strength of God to fully accomplish His
mission. Jesus grew to manhood in perfect harmony with the
natural laws of human development. Dr. Luke's account is that
"Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with
God and men" (Luke 2:52, NIV). The conditions under which
Christ grew up were as "dry ground." This is a figure
of the hardships, adversities, struggles, and prejudices in
which the "tender plant" grew up. Rather than becoming
stunted like a plant in dry ground. Jesus grew spiritually,
physically, intellectually, and socially.
man, Jesus was perfect in every respect--in character and
in physical appearance. When the hour came to pay the supreme
price of our redemption, Christ was ready. The tender plant
was ready in every way to pass the test with flying colors.
We, too, can grow as a tender plant into full maturity in
Jesus Christ our perfect example (see Philippians 4:12, 13).
Ellen G. White makes this point about the tender plant: "Throughout
his childhood and youth, he manifested the perfection of character
that marked his after life. He grew in wisdom and knowledge...
He grew up as a tender plant... in the retired valleys among
the hills... yet his life was one long struggle against the
powers of darkness."--Signs of the Times, August
Prayer Today: Lord, as a tender plant, I desire
to grow into Your perfect likeness. Thank You for showing
me how. Amen.