Daily Archives: November 15, 2022

“Every man under his vine and fig tree”

The expression used as our title may seen strange to modern man, but it was clearly understood in biblical times. Notice two biblical verses:

But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree, and no one shall make them afraid, for the mouth of the LORD of hosts has spoken. (Micah 4:4 ESV)

In that day, declares the LORD of hosts, every one of you will invite his neighbor to come under his vine and under his fig tree. (Zechariah 3:10 ESV)

Commenting on Zechariah 3:10, Hailey says,

Under one’s vine and fig tree was a symbol of peace enjoyed in the midst of safety and security (1 Kings 4;24-25; Isaiah 36:16), promised by Jehovah through Micah in the kingdom of the Messiah (4:4).” (Hailey, Homer. A Commentary on the Minor Prophets. Baker, 1972, p. 337).

The biblical record explains that Sennacherib, king of Assyria, was the dominant power in the region.For he had dominion over all the region west of the Euphrates from Tiphsah to Gaza, over all the kings west of the Euphrates. And he had peace on all sides around him. And Judah and Israel lived in safety, from Dan even to Beersheba, every man under his vine and under his fig tree, all the days of Solomon.  (1 Kings 4:24-25 ESV)

Sennacherib, king of Assyria, urged the people of Judea,

Do not listen to Hezekiah. For thus says the king of Assyria: Make your peace with me and come out to me. Then each one of you will eat of his own vine, and each one of his own fig tree, and each one of you will drink the water of his own cistern, until I come and take you away to a land like your own land, a land of grain and wine, a land of bread and vineyards. (Isaiah 36:16-17 ESV)

We still see examples of people living under their own vine and fig trees in the Bible Lands today.

A small cottage at Seleucia (Acts 13:4) with a vine growing over it. The vine provides summer shade and fresh fruit for the owner. From here Barnabas, Paul, and John Mark sailed to Cyprus.
Near the cottage and vine there is a fig tree. You will see the promise of ripe figs in due time.

We might compare this to the modern expression, “We have a good job and have been able to buy a house and have enough to pay for the groceries.”

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