Tuesday, June 19, 2018

“Of Tomatoes and Truth”

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…

"Of Tomatoes and Truth"

   If you enjoy tomatoes, this one's for you.  The message that follows may well change your life, in a small but most enjoyable manner.  Far more importantly, a vital spiritual true shines even more brightly than the culinary illumination I hope to impart.

    "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness" (II Timothy 3:16).

    First, the tomatoes.  We love them here in the southern United States.  The climate and soil in most parts of the South serve tomato plants well, which in turn, serves our appetites even better.  However, we have long embraced a falsehood about this fruit (yes, tomatoes are scientifically a fruit).  "Don't ever put tomatoes in the refrigerator!  It will kill their flavor and texture!"  Our grandparents, parents, aunts, uncles, neighbors, and kindergarten playmates pounded this truism into our brains from the nearly the moment of our conception.  There is truth in the axiom.  If you put an unripe tomato in the refrigerator, the maturing process of the fruit will end almost immediately.  You'll end up with a flavorless, hard (or sometimes mushy) specimen that will be best suited for the compost pile.  On the other hand, a fully ripe tomato actually loves refrigeration.  It will remain usable for at least a week, and I've held them in the cold box for significantly longer without spoilage.  You might turn them over every couple of days, and it's not a bad idea to let a cold tomato warm up on the counter before cutting into it.  But the refrigerator can be a friend of tomatoes - and of their partakers - if we follow the rule: only refrigerate a fully ripe tomato.

    Of far greater importance are Biblical truisms, that is, commonly held beliefs about the Scriptures that do not actually reflect God's truth.  What does the Bible actually say about God, people, creation, history, salvation, the Christian life, and a myriad of other subjects it addresses?  Sometimes we think we know Scriptural truth when actually we follow untrue or half-true notions that will not stand the test of proper Biblical interpretation.  The prophet Isaiah speaks powerfully to this vital matter: "Whom shall He teach knowledge?  And whom shall He make to understand doctrine?  Them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.  For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little" (Isaiah 28:9-10).

   When the tomato is beautifully red (or whatever its native hue, depending on the variety), when it's flesh softens but retains firmness, and when its fragrance wafts with the essence of summer eat it!!!!  But if you've already had 3 or 4, and there's a few left, throw 'em in the refrigerator vegetable bin on a paper towel or other soft surface.  They'll be waiting for you tomorrow, or a few days from now, or even perhaps next week.  Of far greater importance, let us keep our hearts before the Lord and His Word to ensure that we walk in accordance with Truth rather than mere truisms.  What does the Bible actually say?  No more important question exists.  Or better yet, make it personal, as did the Psalmist…

"Teach me Thy way, o Lord.  I will walk in Thy truth."
(Psalm 86:11)
"Search me, o God, and know my heart.  Try me and know my thoughts.  See if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."
(Psalm 139:23-24)

Weekly Memory Verse
    "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try (test) the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world."
(I John 4:1)

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