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Olives4 OLIVES…a tasty little fruit that comes in black and green and sometimes winish red. Several different regions are now growing them. The tree and its fruit give its name to the plant family, which also includes species such as lilacs, Jasmine, forsythia and the true ash trees. The word derives from Latin, oliva. The word ‘oil’ in multiple languages ultimately derives from the same name as this tree and its fruit.


Olive oil is a fat obtained from the olive fruit. Grinding whole olives and extracting the oil by mechanical or chemical means produce the oil. It is commonly used in cooking, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, soaps and as a fuel for traditional oil lamps. Olive oil is used throughout the world, but especially in the Mediterranean countries and, in particular, in Greece where the largest consumption per person can be found. Greek salads come to mind. 

While shopping recently I came across a full display of a variety of olives. My favorite is Mt. Athos pitted green olives with minced garlic!

Olives1 Olives Olives2

The olive tree can live for hundreds, even thousands of years. Research has revealed several throughout the world that are 1,600 to 2,000 years and older. 


When we were in Jerusalem last year we toured the Garden of Gethsemane. Some of these trees are reported to be around 2,000 years old. It was stated that possibly a few of the trees were alive at the time of Christ. One older one had recently died. 

With Easter approaching, my mind turned to our tour of Israel, specifically the Mount of Olives. Jesus entered Jerusalem on what we know as Palm Sunday. “Now when they drew near Jerusalem, and came to Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, and Jesus sent two disciples to go into the village and find the donkey and its colt…” (Mt. 21:1). This was done to fulfill scripture.  Later in the week we see Him sitting with three disciples on the Mount of Olives across from the temple discussing the signs of the end times. “Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, ‘tell us when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?'”  (Mt. 24:3)

We all have our favorite places to spend time. Jesus was no different. “… Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. Now early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came to him; and he sat down and taught them”  (Jn. 8:1-2).  Jesus ate the Last Supper with His disciples, had communion and washed their feet.  Judas Iscariot left and proceeded to betray Him. “And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives….. Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and said to the disciples, ‘sit here while I go and pray over there'” (Mt. 26:30, 36).  Judas had no trouble finding Jesus that night as it seemed to be a spot where He would go, not to hide, but to teach and pray.

Gethsemane April 2012

Gethsemane means “oil press”. It is a garden at the foot of the Mount of Olives. Olives and the olive tree are throughout scripture reflecting so many different things. Olives were used to produce the oil for anointing kings and priests and to provide light in the lamps. It is so symbolic since that is where Jesus, our King and High Priest, the Light of the world, spent His last days and hours before His impending death for the sins of the world, yours and mine. He entered Jerusalem through the Mount of Olives and exits from the same place. The entry was accompanied by worship and cheering; the exit was accompanied by arrest and jeering. 

For thousands of years, God has provided the olive tree to Israel as a rich blessing, primarily for food and worship. It represents life in the fullest since.  Jesus is Israel! Jesus is life! Join David in worship this Easter; “But I am a green olive tree in the house of God; I trust in the mercy of God forever and ever. I will praise You forever, because You have done it; and in the presence of Your saints I will wait on Your name, for it is good” (Psa. 52:8-9). Among countless others, His name is Jesus, Messiah, Redeemer, Yeshua, Isa al Masih, King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

My thirteen year old grandson is always reminding me; Bumpa, He is risen, to which I naturally respond; yes Will, risen indeed!  Hallelujah!!!

Copyright 2013

Bill C. Dotson



Some material takenfrom Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Scriptures are from the New King James Version

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