Honeybees are among the most amazing creatures which the LORD has put upon the Earth to teach us HIS order and purpose in all things. It would be impossible for men to calculate the number of these insects which inhabit the Earth at any given moment, much less the number of them which have lived and died, even though that number is quite finite. We are staggered to contemplate the vastness of their population and yet convinced that each individual one has been created to carry out its own designated task according to the LORD’s purpose. Each one is in the exact locale where it needs to be to perform that assigned task. Nothing can prevent that task nor can any other take its place in the performance of that which each has be sent to do.
There are men who have devoted their lives to the study of these creatures and their habits. Yet, the vast majority of people never give a moment’s thought to the intricacies of the honeybee’s behavior, the dependence of other parts of the creation on their work, nor even the method by which they produce the delectable nectar called honey. But there are few who have not tasted the fruits of their labors and benefitted from their diligence in pollinating a vast array of flowers, fruits, and vegetables which are necessary for man’s existence.
We are reminded by this of Paul’s writing to the Corinthians where he said, “But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence.” (1Cor 1:27-29) He is, of course, referring to spiritual things yet we see this very principle illustrated by the lowly bee as well as other parts of the natural creation. What glory could a man possibly take from the labor of the honeybee? He has no ability to direct their efforts or cause them to produce, yet he reaps the bounty of such.
In this very fashion we can declare how much less it is that a man can cause himself to understand even the basic things of the earth which GOD has set in motion, let alone stir himself up to take hold upon that TRUTH which is hidden in CHRIST and yet revealed quite plainly by the work of the SPIRIT of GOD as the WIND blows where it lists. Just as GOD is pleased to direct the efforts of the honeybee to benefit mankind, so too is HE pleased to manifest HIS glory in the gospel by sending the most unthankful and rebellious of all creatures to declare it unto men. “For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.” (1Cor 1:21) The “foolishness” of this “preaching”, lies not in the efforts of those who are sent to perform this task, but rather in the content of that message which they are sent into the world to proclaim. Because the natural man cannot receive this message and it is “foolishness” to him. He will reject this message as “foolish”, except the LORD open his eyes to behold its TRUTH and gives him ears to hear it.
This is that very truth which is encompassed in what the LORD told Nicodemus: “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John 3:3) How wonderful it is that the LORD is pleased to awaken dead sinners to behold the glory of GOD in the face of JESUS CHRIST. Otherwise they would never be able to see it, much less to embrace it and fall upon their faces in adoration and thanks for such an unspeakable GIFT. The LORD spoke of the certainty that such would come to pass when HE said, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.” (John 10:27-28) “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” (John 6:37)
In the thirty-second chapter of Deuteronomy we read the “song of Moses”. This chapter along with those that follow are Moses’ final and faithful words to the nation of Israel, just prior to their entering into the “land of promise”. None but those to whom it was given could benefit from it. Oh! what a glorious message of grace came forth from the lips of him to whom the Law was given on mount Sinai as he spoke of CHRIST. Yet HE did so with eyes yet dimmed by the glory of the Law and as one only enabled to view the “land of promise” from afar, not being able to enter therein. As we read his words we are reminded of what John said, “And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” (John 1:16-17) “For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.” (Heb 7:19)
It is of this “BETTER HOPE” which Moses sang when he said, ” He made him ride on the high places of the earth, that he might eat the increase of the fields; and he made him to suck honey out of the rock, and oil out of the flinty rock.” There has never been any other ROCK which has been the only SOURCE of blessing to the sons of GOD from the very beginning. HE is that STONE which was rejected by the builders, but is made the “HEAD of the corner”. HE is both that ONE who is the ROCK and has sucked honey and oil out of the rock. HE has purchased an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled for HIS people which HE has loved with an everlasting love.
They have now sucked honey and oil out of this ROCK as HE has led captivity captive and has given gifts unto men. Rocks do not naturally produce honey or oil, yet HE who has made the rocks out of nothing which did appear, can cause such a thing to occur. Yet we understand that the analogy arises out of the fact that HE has ordained the honeybee to inhabit the crevices of the rocks building therein a comb and depositing the honey out of the sight of men. In HIS own time HE is pleased to cause this honey to flow out quite without the aid of men. Such is the promise of GOD to HIS children as we see in Ezekiel’s prophecy, “For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land. Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God. I will also save you from all your uncleannesses: and I will call for the corn, and will increase it, and lay no famine upon you. And I will multiply the fruit of the tree, and the increase of the field, that ye shall receive no more reproach of famine among the heathen. Then shall ye remember your own evil ways, and your doings that were not good, and shall lothe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and for your abominations.” (Eze 36:24-31)
Such is the work of GOD which is hidden from those that believe not and revealed unto those who do by the grace of GOD. “Behold ye among the heathen, and regard, and wonder marvellously: for I will work a work in your days, which ye will not believe, though it be told you.” (Hab 1:5) HE has indeed hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them unto babes. Thus we have no place to glory except in HIM who sends the “bee” and causes the “honey” to come forth from the ROCK. Have you tasted of the sweetness of the LORD’s mercies? Do you give HIM all glory for the unspeakable gift of HIS grace? CHRIST is ALL.