“For if the firstfruit is holy, the lump is also holy; and if the root is holy, so are the branches. And if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them, and with them became a partaker of the root and fatness of the olive tree, do not boast against the branches. But if you do boast, remember that you do not support the root, but the root supports you.” Rom 11:16-18
Today let’s talk about the two olive trees of Scripture. Paul refers to them here. One is wild, who are the Gentiles, and one is cultivated, who are the Jews. This is not the first place in Scripture that the two olive trees are mentioned! Paul did not get this out of thin air!
“Now the angel who talked with me came back and wakened me, as a man who is wakened out of his sleep. And he said to me, “What do you see?” So I said, “I am looking, and there is a lampstand of solid gold with a bowl on top of it, and on the stand seven lamps with seven pipes to the seven lamps. Two olive trees are by it, one at the right of the bowl and the other at its left.” … Then I answered and said to him, “What are these two olive trees—at the right of the lampstand and at its left?” … So he said, “These are the two anointed ones, who stand beside the Lord of the whole earth.” Zec 4
The literal Hebrew for “two anointed ones,” is “two sons of new oil.” Whoa! This is a vision of two olive trees, from which come the golden oil, which gives light to the menorah! The oil and the light are metaphors for the Spirit and Word of God (see for example, 1 Sam 16:13, and Psa 119:105).
“I was given a reed like a measuring rod and was told, “Go and measure the temple of God and the altar, and count the worshipers there. But exclude the outer court; do not measure it, because it has been given to the Gentiles. They will trample on the holy city for 42 months. And I will give power to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth.” These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth. If anyone tries to harm them, fire comes from their mouths and devours their enemies. This is how anyone who wants to harm them must die. These men have power to shut up the sky so that it will not rain during the time they are prophesying; and they have power to turn the waters into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague as often as they want.” Rev 11:1-6
Just from these three passages, in Zec 4, Rom 11, and Rev 11, we can learn a lot about the two olive trees. We know one is wild and one is cultivated. We know one represents the Gentiles and one represents the Jews. We know they both stand before the God of the whole earth. We know they are both anointed. Rev shows us that the olive trees, who are the witnesses, shut up the sky so that there is no rain, and strike the earth with plagues. Shutting up the sky is the miracle Elijah is known for (1 Kin 17 & 18). Striking the earth with plagues is the miracle Moses is known for (Exo 7 through 12).
Wild olive tree = Gentiles (i.e., Christians) = Elijah (and I will go further and say that Elijah also represents the Spirit of God);
Cultivated olive tree = Jews = Moses (and I will go further and say that Moses also represents the Law of God).
Notice that when Jesus was transfigured, when He appeared in His glory prophetically, Moses appeared on one side of Him, and Elijah on the other (Mat 17:1-3). There they are again, Moses and Elijah, the two witnesses, the two olive trees, the Law and the Spirit who are not opposed to each other, Jews and Gentiles together!
There is much in the Torah and prophetic Scriptures about these two, who are also known as the two houses of Israel, Judah (Moses) and Ephraim (Elijah). If you want to learn more, get a book by Batya Wootten called Who is Israel? Redeemed Israel: A Primer, and the prophecies concerning God’s chosen people – who are us also! – will be revealed to you! These things have been shut up until the latter days, because they concern the latter days. They concern, as Paul says in Rom 11, the fullness of the Gentiles coming to salvation, the Jews coming to salvation, and that which the salvation of the Jews triggers – LIFE FROM THE DEAD! The actual dead rising up to life; resurrection at the last trump and the return of Jesus Christ!