Mangroves grow where most other vegetation cannot, in a hostile environment with saline or brackish water. These trees perform a valuable service in protecting the shoreline from erosion as their roots go down and stabilise the ground.
Mangrove roots can absorb and eliminate 90% to 97% of the salt by sending it to what is called the sacrificial leaf, which absorbs the salinity, dies and falls off. It’s possible to tell which are sacrificial leaves as they turn yellow.
What a picture that is, that those leaves die so that the rest of the leaves and plants can live. Caiaphas, the high priest, said in John 11:50: “It is expedient for you that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation does not perish.” Little did he know he was being prophetic.
Jesus didn’t just die for the whole nation, but the whole world. Each and every person can benefit from the sacrifice Jesus was willing to make. He was like the sacrificial leaf; except he was the sacrificial lamb of God.
If the mangrove leaf does not sacrifice itself, the whole mangrove would die. If Jesus had not been willing to sacrifice himself then the whole of humanity would be destined for eternal death.
Thank God that Jesus made his sacrifice available to all who will accept him. It was a selfless act born out of a profound love for us, his creation, whom he calls to be his friends.