The Unbeliever and the Acorn – by Eliezer Gonzalez

Jan 20, 2016 4198

oakA minister was in Italy, and there he saw the grave of a man who had died centuries before who was an unbeliever and completely against Christianity, but a little afraid of it too. So the man had a huge stone slab put over his grave so he would not have to be raised from the dead in case there is a resurrection from the dead. He had insignias put all over the slab saying, “I do not want to be raised from the dead. I don’t believe in it.”

 Evidently, when he was buried, an acorn must have fallen into the grave. So a hundred years later the acorn had grown up through the grave and split that slab. It was now a tall towering oak tree. The minister looked at it and asked, “If an acorn, which has power of biological life in it, can split a slab of that magnitude, what can the acorn of God’s resurrection power do in a person’s life?”

This story, told by Tim Keller, reveals the powerful truth that is expressed in Phil 3:10:

I want to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. – NLT

When you know Christ you will experience his mighty resurrection power. Paul is referring to specifically to the resurrection of the dead at the last day. However, he is also referring to the reality that having the assurance of this reality changes us here and now.

If by faith we have accepted Christ’s death and resurrection on our behalf, then this inspires and empowers us to press on and receive the heavenly prize (v.14), because we are citizens of heaven (v.20).

Paul is writing with tears in his eyes (v.18). We can no longer indulge in behaviours that show that we are enemies of the cross (v.18), for the very righteousness of God is offered to us through faith in Christ (v.9).

If we are to be resurrected with Christ, we must also suffer with him, sharing in his death (v.10). We like the “resurrection” part, but we don’t like the “dying” part so much, don’t we?

We share in his death when we realise that when he died, we died. Christ has suffered the penalty for our sin, so that we can no longer be slaves to sin.

There is a resurrection from the dead, at the last day. But no one who has not died in Christ, and who has not been raised up to new life in him – in this life – will ever get to experience it. For today, the mighty resurrection power of Christ is shed abroad to all who believe; to all who are righteous through faith in Him; to all who know Christ.

Then you will know the power of His resurrection.

– Eliezer Gonzalez

Melissa Durand

Apr 3, 2024

This is very interesting. I’d love to know when/where Tim Keller shared this. My husband’s father passed away 40 years ago. A tree sprung up from his grave. It was quite the sight.

Robert Kreher

Feb 14, 2022

I am a firm believer in the resurrection. But if this "parable" was to be true, I sure even Christian agriculturist scientists be it be backyard gardeners, career farmers, botanists, etc, might challenge the "natural" capability of the biological power of an acorn to do it. What depth did it fall into the grave under which it was buried, how could its photosynthesis occur? So if it were to occur, it would take the supernatural power of God to do it. With our resurrection, we have no biological power. Likewise, the buried acorn would also return dust and have no biological on its own. So to it give credence as a historical illustration, a photo and, or some documented evidence needs to be cited. The Bible does cite evidence for Jesus' resurrection.

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