On a day later, when they’d left Bethany, He became hungry. Seeing well away a fig tree in leaf, He went to see if perhaps He’d find anything onto it; and when He stumbled on it, He found just leaves, because of it was not the summer season for figs. He explained to it, “May no-one ever eat fruit from you again!” And His disciples were listening… As they were passing by in the morning, they saw the fig tree withered from the roots up. Being reminded, Peter thought to Him, “Rabbi, look, the fig tree which You cursed has withered.” And Jesus answered saying in their mind, “Trust God. “Truly I say to you, whoever says to the mountain,’Be taken up and cast into the ocean,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will probably happen, it is likely to be granted him.”
First allow me to remind us that individuals shouldn’t question Jesus in the incorrect spirit. Whatever He does is perfect and good and proper. But frequently His actions sung mỹ, sung ngọt raise eyebrows and grab our attention, which is exactly what He wants!
The secular, carnal man will look at this text and see an impatient individual who had been hungry, and got ticked off once the fruit he was expecting to find and eat, was not there. Cursing followed, as men is going to do when they are upset.
People of God full of God’s Spirit and knowing even a little of God’s ways can in no way attribute such characteristics to the Son of God. Human means sinful to us. But originally, Adam was created perfect. This is actually the second Adam, still walking in perfect humanity and subjected Divinity.
Humanly speaking, He did get hungry. He saw a fig tree. He really did expect a small meal to emerge, but it did not.
The Heavenly part kicks in here. The Father, with whom He was in constant contact, delivered to the Son’s attention a golden opportunity for teaching using this incident.
You will dsicover no anger in this passage. None. No uncontrollable man governed by his belly. That is a Western thing, not really a Godly one. He was disappointed, but immediately the thought stumbled on Him to say something concerning this happening that would teach an important lesson – 2 lessons actually – to the disciples.
The first of the two lessons Jesus also taught in a parable in Luke 13:
“And He began telling this parable: “A man had a fig tree which have been planted in his vineyard; and he came trying to find fruit onto it and didn’t find any. And he said to the vineyard-keeper,’Behold, for 36 months I have come trying to find fruit with this fig tree without finding any. Cut it down! Why does it even use up the floor?’ “And he answered and thought to him,’Let it alone, sir, for in 2010 too, until I dig around it and put in fertilizer; and when it bears fruit next season, fine; but when not, cut it down.’ ”
The allusion is clear. Here and elsewhere the “fig tree” is Israel, God’s special planting in Canaan land which was this type of disappointment. Oh how God wanted fruit from that tree! So much effort and love seemingly gone to waste. I say seemingly, though we all know that God cannot waste any effort. Something good arises from Israel, without a doubt! The Scriptures, the example of the fathers, the prophets, Jesus Himself, the first church, and eventually “all Israel” is likely to be saved. (That’s another subject.)
And dare we also mention that the tree that does not bear fruit can also be like a Christian would you not do exactly the same? I think it is fair to say that individuals are contained in the parable and in the “incident.” Disappoint Him good enough, and the curse is swift and sure.
But as you can see in Peter’s response and then Jesus’a day later, there was a two-fold lesson to be learned here. Lesson 2 had regarding the power of God and our use of it by faith. Though nothing “happened” when the language were uttered – as in our seemingly unanswered prayers – a day later the results were clear. And once we wait good enough and believe good enough, what we say to God and to even men may have results.
No, this is no idle anger from the hungry man. This was God the Master Teacher using a teachable moment to instill wisdom in His followers then and now.
I guess that is a third lesson: no matter how disappointing or difficult the circumstance by which we find ourselves, God can transform it into part of our education, if we’ll listen real hard…