is frequently mentioned in Scripture. The dove from the ark brought an olive-branch to Noah ( Genesis 8:11 ). It is mentioned among the most notable trees of Palestine, where it was cultivated long before the time of the Hebrews ( Deuteronomy 6:11 ; 8:8 ). It is mentioned in the first Old Testament parable, that of Jotham ( Judges 9:9 ), and is named among the blessings of the "good land," and is at the present day the one characteristic tree of Palestine. The oldest olive-trees in the country are those which are enclosed in the Garden of Gethsemane. It is referred to as an emblem of prosperity and beauty and religious privilege ( Psalms 52:8 ; Jeremiah 11:16 ; Hosea 14:6 ). The two "witnesses" mentioned in Revelation 11:4 are spoken of as "two olive trees standing before the God of the earth." (Compare Zechariah 4:3 Zechariah 4:11-14 .)
The "olive-tree, wild by nature" ( Romans 11:24 ), is the shoot or cutting of the good olive-tree which, left ungrafted, grows up to be a "wild olive." In Romans 11:17 Paul refers to the practice of grafting shoots of the wild olive into a "good" olive which has become unfruitful. By such a process the sap of the good olive, by pervading the branch which is "graffed in," makes it a good branch, bearing good olives. Thus the Gentiles, being a "wild olive," but now "graffed in," yield fruit, but only through the sap of the tree into which they have been graffed. This is a process "contrary to nature" ( 11:24 ).
M.G. Easton M.A., D.D., Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Third Edition,
published by Thomas Nelson, 1897. Public Domain, copy freely.
Bibliography InformationEaston, Matthew George. "Entry for Olive-tree". "Easton's Bible Dictionary".