Today we are reading from Mark 11: 12-14:
12 On the following day, when they came from Bethany, he was hungry. 13 Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to see whether perhaps he would find anything on it. When he came to it, he found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. 14 He said to it, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.” And his disciples heard it.
Today we see a passage that is always confusing to people. Why did Jesus take all this out on this poor fig tree? What did this tree do to cause Jesus to curse it and kill it? That seems so extreme, doesn’t it?
Here is what is happening. Many fig trees will produce false fruit. False fruit means the tree has flowered and looks like it is producing fruit when actually there is nothing there, no fruit at all. So, the fruit that is “looks” right isn’t actually fruit at all. It is false fruit.
Jesus condemns the tree because its fruit is false; they are not real.
That’s a powerful lesson for us today. Do we have “false fruit?” Places in our lives that look good, that people may say, “there’s good fruit there” but in truth, there is nothing really there?
Do we produce actual fruit for God, or do we just look good?
We are chasing after God, His grace, and His life, or are we simply cultivating a good appearance?
Do we have as John Wesley warned, the trappings of religion, but not the power therein?
Let’s make sure that we are not focused on looking good for others, let’s make sure that we are focused on truly seeking God and bearing the true fruit of the Holy Spirit. This tree was condemned for bearing false fruit.
May we not make the same mistake.
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