Bradford Pear Christianity

by Sandy Simpson, 2/28/17

 

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b3/Bradford_9288.JPG/220px-Bradford_9288.JPG

 

I was driving along and noticing that spring has sprung here in North Carolina.  One of the first trees to bloom is the Bradford Pear.  I began to notice how that tree has proliferated almost everywhere and then my wife looked up the information on this tree on the web.  As she began to read the facts about this tree and its proliferation I began to see an allegorical parallel to what is going on in much of Christendom.  But before I get into what the Bradford Pear can show us about the churches, I need to present the facts about the tree.

 

Pyrus calleryana, the Callery pear, or the Bradford pear, is a species of pear native to China and Vietnam (But not to North America). The species is named after the Italian-French Sinologue Joseph-Marie Callery (1810–1862) who sent specimens of the tree to Europe from China.[4][5]

The Callery pear is an invasive species in many areas of eastern North America, outcompeting many native plants and trees.[2] In the northeastern United States, wild Callery pears sometimes form extensive, nearly pure stands in old fields, along roadsides, and in similar disturbed areas … their prolifically produced fruits are taken by birds, which disperse the seeds in their droppings. The various cultivars are generally themselves self-incompatible, unable to produce fertile seeds when self-pollinated, or cross-pollinated with another tree of the same cultivar … Callery pear is reported as established outside cultivation in 152 counties in 25 states in the United States.[10] While these wild plants are sometimes called "Bradford pear" (for the 'Bradford' cultivar), they are actually wild-growing descendants of multiple genotypes of Pyrus calleryana, and hence more correctly referred to by the common (or scientific) name of the species itself.[2]The tree is known for its pungent, often unpleasant smell during its flowering stage, which has been described as reminiscent of rotting fish, chlorine, or semen.[11][12] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyrus_calleryana)

 

All those white blooming trees you see everywhere... do you think they are pretty? If you knew what they actually represent, you would choke on your morning coffee and gag on your scrambled eggs. This especially applies to that “charming” Bradford pear your dimwitted landscaper planted in the middle of your front yard. Indeed, lack of smarts is what has led to this disaster. Bradford pear is worse than kudzu, and the ill-conceived progeny of Bradford pear will be cursing our environment for decades or possibly centuries yet to come.  When Bradford pear was introduced as an ornamental in 1964 by the US Department of Agriculture, it was known then that this tree possessed the weakest branch structure in nature. Also, the tree was assumed to be sterile. Bradford pears will seldom last more than 20 years before they bust themselves apart at the seams. That’s actually the good news. In an attempt to extend the lifespan of this despicable tree, other varieties such as Cleveland Select, etc. were introduced. These trees will live for about 25 years. That’s little consolation for the resulting disasters that happened when these other pear varieties were introduced. However, the fact that Bradford pear trees are short lived and dangerous is not the real reason that these trees are such a disaster. The problem is that these trees are in fact not sterile. No two Bradford pears will ever reproduce among themselves, but they do cross pollinate with every other pear tree out there, including the Cleveland Select pear trees that were meant to be the salvation of flowering pears everywhere. The introduction of other pear varieties has compounded the problem to the point where it is almost too late to rectify.  Because of the cross pollination problem, pear trees have now proliferated exponentially across our environment. And, to make matters worse, the evil offspring has reverted to the ancient Chinese Callery pears which form impenetrable thorny thickets that choke out the life out of pines, dogwoods, maples, redbuds, oaks, hickories, etc. When you see those fields of white flowering trees, please don’t get giddy with excitement over pretty white flowers. What you are looking at are Callery pears destroying nature. Callery pears have 4 inch thorns. They can’t be mowed down. Those thorns will shred John Deere tractor tires. They can only be removed by steel tracked dozers, decreasing the value of agricultural or forest land to the tune of $3,000 per acre. And, make no mistake about this. That solitary Bradford pear growing in your yard is what caused this problem. Your one tree has spawned hundreds of evil progeny. If you don’t believe that, just take a little ride, and notice all the white flowering trees blooming these days. The closer they are to “ornamental” Bradford pear trees, the thicker they are. (The Curse of the Bradford Pear, http://www.greenvilleonline.com/story/life/2016/03/21/curse-bradford-pear/82070210/

 

Bradford pear trees may not be hurting your yard, but they are causing major damage for farmers and choking out beautiful (and valuable) hardwood trees. In fact, all reputable nurseries know about the problems with these trees. Good landscapers refuse to plant them. Those pretty little white trees in your yard are cross pollinating and causing these problems all over. Not only are these trees causing serious damage to native plants and shredding tractor tires, but they come with other problems as well.

Structurally weak:

Bradford Pear trees are structurally weak. Many people love them because they are perfectly symmetrical and grow in a beautiful shape. They even maintain this gorgeous shape for about 2 months until rain, snow or even a mild breeze causes them to break in half.

Seriously… they have a lifespan of only about 20 years and will usually die as a result of ice, snow or even rain making their branches too heavy.

We’ve all seen these trees cracked in half after a storm. Why plant a tree that will just be a mess to clean in the yard in a few years?

Prevent grass from growing:

Grass has trouble growing underneath Bradford Pear trees and often the area under these trees is bare and muddy.

Get too big:

These were supposed to be small, ornamental trees that only grow 25 feet tall and equally wide. Unfortunately, no one informed the trees themselves, as they sometimes get twice as big and overtake the small yards they are planted in.

And they stink:

As an irrelevant side note, they also smell really, really bad. Their smell has been compared to various foul smells including rotting fish (as well as a couple other smells I’ll avoid listing for the sake of any younger readers). Do you really want that in your yard?

Does the Bradford Pear Tree Produce Fruit?

Now, all of those negatives could potentially be less of a problem if the tree at least did something beneficial, like produce fruit that you could eat.

Hard to eliminate

Unfortunately, this won’t be the easiest tree to eliminate. Cutting it down is the first step, but getting rid of it completely requires some extra effort. Now is a great time of year to do this before they bloom in the spring and Fall is a great time to plant new trees.

Here’s What to Do

Cut down the tree.

Grind out the root.

Prepare for battle: These trees don’t give up easily and they will send out hundreds of suckers, or shoots, from the roots for up to two years after you cut it down until the roots finally give up and die.

During this time, you can do things like: drill holes in the root and pack salt into it (this will help a little).

Mow often so the sprouts can’t get big or go to seed.

If grass isn’t growing anyway, consider covering with black plastic to choke out the roots and then re-seeding once the roots are gone.

Replace the stinky Bradford Pear tree with a beneficial and equally beautiful tree (suggestions below). (Cut Down the Bradford Pear Tree?, https://wellnessmama.com/126975/cut-down-bradford-pear-tree/)

 

Okay.  Now we can make some comparisons.  I am not doing “midrash” here, only taking the Bradford pear tree information as an allegory for what is happening in the churches today.  The churches are being destroyed by influences from outside of the truths of God’s written Word.  The Callery or Bradford pear is native to China and Vietnam (But not to North America).  It is a non-native species.  What happens when you introduce things to an environment that are not native? They throw the whole balanced ecosystem in to unbalance. We can only have a balanced ecosystem in the church by following the precepts of the Creator. The Callery pear is an invasive species in many areas of eastern North America, outcompeting many native plants and trees. This has happened in the churches with the introduction of New Age, eastern Mysticism, Gnosticism, postmodernism and other invasive species.  Their prolifically produced fruits are taken by birds, which disperse the seeds in their droppings.  In the Bible the most often used metaphor for birds is demonic spirits.  The demonic followers of Satan are the ones in the paranormal realm who spread New Age lies through the churches.  Callery pear is reported as established outside cultivation in 152 counties in 25 states in the United States.  It isn’t long before those invasive ideas reach churches all over the world.  The tree is known for its pungent, often unpleasant smell during its flowering stage, which has been described as reminiscent of rotting fish, chlorine, or semen.  False ideas are appealing in the sight of the carnal mind but in actuality they stink.  Bradford pear is worse than kudzu, and the ill-conceived progeny of Bradford pear will be cursing our environment for decades or possibly centuries yet to come.  As with the proliferation of this invasive tree, it ends up plaguing the churches for decades and even centuries. The problem is that these trees are in fact not sterile. The false ideas of the world entering the church often start out looking harmless but pretty soon they cause a chain effect because they are not limited. Because of the cross pollination problem, pear trees have now proliferated exponentially across our environment. And, to make matters worse, the evil offspring has reverted to the ancient Chinese Callery pears which form impenetrable thorny thickets that choke out the life out of pines, dogwoods, maples, redbuds, oaks, hickories, etc. They are causing major damage for farmers and choking out beautiful (and valuable) hardwood trees. False teachings tend to choke out good Biblical teaching in churches if left alone.  What you are looking at are Callery pears destroying nature. Callery pears have 4 inch thorns. They can’t be mowed down. Those thorns will shred John Deere tractor tires. They can only be removed by steel tracked dozers, decreasing the value of agricultural or forest land to the tune of $3,000 per acre.  Once established false doctrines and false prophesy is almost impossible to eliminate from the churches without intervention by God and a strong stand by discerning Christians.  The havoc false teachers bring is illustrated very well by the problems associated with Bradford pears.  The problems with “Bradford Pear Christianity” is that it is Structurally weak: Bradford Pear trees are structurally weak. Churches effected by false doctrine and practice are weak. They may look strong but in reality they are easily broken.  They Prevent grass from growing: Grass has trouble growing underneath Bradford Pear trees and often the area under these trees is bare and muddy. Evidence for apostate churches can be found not only in the churches themselves but in the community where they are located.  There is no true spiritual growth, only the establishment of a community club where those who claim to be followers of Christ are not growing to maturity. They Get too big: These were supposed to be small, ornamental trees that only grow 25 feet tall and equally wide. Unfortunately, no one informed the trees themselves, as they sometimes get twice as big and overtake the small yards they are planted in. Mega churches have taken over the landscape and though they look large and successful, they are actually a blight on a landscape which should be dotted with small local churches.  Instead of splitting up to cover more ground the mega church wants to consolidate as many people and churches as they can under one roof or a number of satellite churches who all listen to the same pastor.  These churches often become a monument to self rather than a witness in their community. But actually they stink: As an irrelevant side note, they also smell really, really bad. You will know them by their fruit(Matt. 7:16,20), and in this case their fruit stinks.  Churches teaching false doctrines always go from bad to worse.  They begin by smelling bad and then get increasingly worse.  The problem is that those involved have become inured to the stench and cannot, without repentance, realize how they are viewed by most true believers and especially by unbelievers. Does the Bradford Pear Tree Produce Fruit? Now, all of those negatives could potentially be less of a problem if the tree at least did something beneficial, like produce fruit that you could eat.  There is fruit but it is inedible.  It does not nourish.  It smells bad and it tastes bad.  Until a person realizes the horrible effects of false teaching they will continue to ingest this subpar stuff, not realizing the beautiful ripe pears they are missing in true Biblical churches.

 

So how do you get rid of false teachings?  One thing for sure. They are Hard to eliminate cutting it down is the first step, but getting rid of it completely requires some extra effort. It will not be easy to cut out the cancer of false teaching from your church just like it is a daunting task to get rid of the Bradford pear tree.  It takes effort and persistence. (Rom. 16:17) Here’s What to Do: Cut down the tree. First the false teaching must be confronted and cut out.  1 Corinthians 5:13 But those who are outside, God judges. Remove the wicked man from among yourselves. Grind out the root. It is not enough to simply chop down the tree of false teaching, but because the roots of it have been laid they also need to be systematically ground out with true Biblical teaching.  This can be a long process and will take a lot of soul searching by the individuals affected as well as repentance from false teachings. Luke 3:9 Indeed the axe is already laid at the root of the trees; so every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.” Prepare for battle: These trees don’t give up easily and they will send out hundreds of suckers, or shoots, from the roots for up to two years after you cut it down until the roots finally give up and die.  The enemy will send back some into the church who claim to be free of the former false teachings but are still carriers of the deadly roots because they did not truly repent.  There must be an ongoing battle to expose them and root them out. Ephesians 5:11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. During this time, you can do things like: drill holes in the root and pack salt into it (this will help a little). We are to be the salt of the earth and so, as salt, we bring flavor and preservation to life with Biblical truth, but we also act as an agent to kill off false teaching for good. (Matt. 5:13-16)

Finally we can see the final admonition: Replace the stinky Bradford Pear tree with a beneficial and equally beautiful tree. It is vitally important not to leave a church previous infected with bad teaching in a void.  The bad teaching then has to be replaced by good Biblical teaching so the new tree can grow to maturity and have a beneficial effect on all the trees and the neighborhood.

Ezekiel 31:4 ‘The waters made it grow, the deep made it high. With its rivers it continually extended all around its planting place, And sent out its channels to all the trees of the field.