Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Today we read one of the oddest stories in the New Testament.
Jesus is hungry. He goes to pick a fig to munch on. No figs! Nothing but leaves...
Jesus Curses a Fig Tree
18 "Early in the morning, as Jesus was on his way back to the city, he was hungry. 19 Seeing a fig tree by the road, he went up to it but found nothing on it except leaves. Then he said to it, “May you never bear fruit again!” Immediately the tree withered."
He wants figs. There are none. So he curses the tree and it withers right on the spot!
What is with that?
Was this a "right of way" tree, that was just by the road and no one owned it or took care of it?
If it belonged to a farmer, was he not hurting their livlihood? Was he cursing the tree because they should have been pruning it so it would be fruitful?
20 "When the disciples saw this, they were amazed. “How did the fig tree wither so quickly?” they asked."
The disciples have no issue with him cursing the tree. They were all involved in the mechanics. "Whoa! He cursed the tree and it withered! Right on the spot, man! It just shriveled up... just like that!!!"
Of course, Jesus had a lesson to teach from the experiencce with the tree.
21 "Jesus replied, “Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done. 22 If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.”
He keyed into what the disciples were amazed at - the power to do cool things.
A quirky story, to be sure...