The Fig Is the First Fruit Mentioned in Scripture


Hebrew: teenah

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or a Fig Tree and the Ficus carica

Ficus carica

The fig is a fruit-producing, low-spreading shrub or tree which is quite common in Palestine. Size depends on location and soil quality. A beautiful shade tree, the name in Hebrew means "to spread out". Some reach a height of 25 feet. Mount Olivet was famous for its figs in ancient days, apparently because of its ideal conditions for growing them. There were usually two crops per year. Blooms appear before the leaves in spring. When Christ saw leaves on a fig tree, he rightly expected the fruit as recorded in Mark 11: 12-14, 20-21. 2 Kings 18:31 tells us figs were eaten fresh, but they were dried also, and 1 Samuel 25:18 says they were "pressed into cakes". Figs were made into a poultice, Isaiah 38:21. Jeremiah symbolizes desolation by example of the fig tree. Genesis 3:7 is the first mention of the fig when used by Adam and Eve. Numbers 13:23 records the twelve spies story and mentions figs. Amos 7:14 makes reference to sycamore figs, which are smaller and of a lesser quality. These were eaten by the poorest of the population.

To "sit under one's own fig tree" became a proverbial expression among the Jews to mean peace and prosperity (1 Kings 4: 25, Micah 4: 4, Zech. 3: 10).

"To the Egyptians the fig tree represented the Tree of Life and one of their goddesses presented figs to mortals thought worthy of eternal happiness" (Walker).

Genesis 3:6 (KJV) And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

Genesis 3:7 (KJV) And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.

Deuteronomy 8:7 (KJV) For the LORD thy God bringeth thee into a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and depths that spring out of valleys and hills;

Deuteronomy 8:8 (KJV) A land of wheat, and barley, and vines, and fig trees, and pomegranates; a land of oil olive, and honey;

1 Kings 4:25 (KJV) And Judah and Israel dwelt safely, every man under his vine and under his fig tree, from Dan even to Beersheba, all the days of Solomon.

Proverbs 27:18 (KJV) Whoso keepeth the fig tree shall eat the fruit thereof: so he that waiteth on his master shall be honoured.

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