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The Fig Tree: A Lesson in the Patience and Judgment of God

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The Fig Tree: A Lesson in the Patience and Judgment of God

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What does a parable about an unproductive fig tree have to do with how youโ€™re going about your life? The answer isโ€”quite a biHe desires

In Christโ€™s parable of the barren fig tree, the owner was going to have it cut downโ€”a final solution for something unproductive.

The parable of the barren fig tree offers both good news and bad news. The good news is that God is merciful and willing to forgive. The bad news is that even Godโ€™s patient mercy has its limits. Neither you nor I want to be on the receiving end when Godโ€™s patience runs out. Itโ€™s better to repent while we have the opportunity!
Repentance is not a fashionable word today. Its basic meaning is toย change. It means to stop doing something thatโ€™s not productive or taking you in a wrong direction.
Jesus Christ spoke one of His most interesting parables about a barren fig tree. Hereโ€™s what He said: โ€œA certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. Then he said to the keeper of his vineyard, โ€˜Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground?โ€™ But he answered and said to him, โ€˜Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it. And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that you can cut it down'โ€ (Luke 13:6-9).
Fruit trees require lot of care and proper handling to continue producing luscious fruit year in and year out. Itโ€™s rewarding to see a tree bending under the weight of apples, pears, oranges or grapefruit. To go into your backyard and pick your own fruit you watched develop and ripen is both instructive and rewarding.
Itโ€™s instructive in that we see how fruit develops on a tree. We see the bloom appear and then the first buds of the fruit begin to grow and develop through the months. Seeing the process teaches more than we learn by going to the market and buying the fruit off the stand. Fruit doesnโ€™t just appear in the grocery store; itโ€™s not grown on a delivery truck. It takes time and care to nurture and develop.
Itโ€™s rewarding to take part in the process by which fruit grows. Your efforts combine with the work of nature to bring fruit to harvest.
The harvest of ripened fruit is the reason the tree is taking up valuable real estate. Satisfaction is so important in this process that when there is no fruit you stand looking at the tree trying to understand why it has borne no fruit. Iโ€™ve stood looking at barren trees and asked myself the same questions. Before delving further into the parable, we need to look at what Christ was saying before He gave it.

A message about repentance

At the beginning of Luke 13 we see where Christ had been informed about some โ€œGalileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrificesโ€ (Luke 13:1). It was an atrocity committed by the Roman ruler of the province upon the Galileans. Weโ€™re not told whether there was any provocation. Was it done in retaliation for an attack on the Romans, or was it just done on the whim of the Roman governor as a display of Roman ruthlessness to keep the locals in fear? We donโ€™t know. However, Christ used it to teach a profound lesson, and as He often did, He moved right into a parable to drive home the point.
Inย Luke 13:2ย Jesus responded to the news: โ€œDo you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, no;ย but unless you repent you will all likewise perishโ€ย (emphasis added throughout).
Time and chance happen to everyone, Solomon once wrote (Ecclesiastes 9:11). We donโ€™t always control the events that can happen to us with the rush of events and everyday life.
Jesus was saying that these poor people were just like everyone else. They were human, with weaknesses and strengths like everyone else. They were going about their daily lives and were suddenly caught up in an event that happened to come their way.
In the next verses Jesus referred to another well-known recent event, the collapse of a building on unsuspecting bystanders: โ€œOr those eighteen on whom the tower of Siloam fell and killed them, do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwell in Jerusalem? I tell you, no;ย but unless you repent you will all likewise perishโ€ย (Luke 13:4-5).
Two stories from everyday life. Two calls to repent, to change the direction of oneโ€™s life. In telling them that they could โ€œlikewise perish,โ€ Jesus was warning that they could be like those who, unexpectedly caught up in circumstances beyond their control, had their lives snuffed out in an instant.
Thatโ€™s sobering. We donโ€™t like to think about it, and to be blunt, most of us donโ€™t consider that life is really like this. Butย it is.ย There are no guarantees.
Every day we hear news reports of accidents, natural catastrophes and attacks that take innocent lives. People suffer loss of property, lands and rights because of actions taken by others with little thought about whatโ€™s right or wrong or just.
The world is often this way, and we need to understand the implications. Jesus was being bluntโ€”realisticallyย bluntโ€”with His audience. Events happen in this world over which you have no control, and sometimes good and well-meaning peopleโ€”people just like you and meโ€”get hurt. His point was that we understand this and do what we can and should do, realizing that time and chance could unexpectedly strike at any time.

Change and produce

Repentance is not a fashionable word today. You might even need to go to a dictionary to look up the meaning. Its basic meaning isย to change.ย It means to stop doing something thatโ€™s not productive or taking you in a wrong direction. It means to stop going in one direction of life, a direction that can be self-destructive, and to turn around and go anotherโ€”in a way thatโ€™s productive and even godly.
Biblically, and as Christ meant it here, it meansย to stop breaking the law of God and begin to obey Godโ€™s law.ย Christ meant it in the same way He used it when first preaching the gospel of the Kingdom of God as quoted inย Mark 1:15: โ€œThe time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.โ€ It means that through this announcement a new order of life is at hand and we need to obtain a mind-set that fits. It means to โ€œbear fruits worthy of repentanceโ€ (Matthew 3:8).
Which leads us back to the parable.
An unproductive fig tree in a vineyard is pretty much uselessโ€”unless youโ€™re like Nathaniel and want to use it only for shade (John 1:48). And if it hasnโ€™t produced fruit for three years in a row, a remedy needs to be applied. It isnโ€™t that the tree is dead and incapable of producing. The tree hasnโ€™t had the proper care and feeding and is just there, marking time. Itโ€™s like a lot of peopleโ€”alive and breathing, but not really going anywhere.
How about you? Do you understand your life? Can you make sense out of this confusing, sometimes disorderly and uneven existence? Do you know the purpose for your life and what it can become? Forget for a moment the bigger question of โ€œthe meaning of lifeโ€ and just focus on you. What is the purpose for you drawing breathg food and taking up space on this planet?
If you donโ€™t know, or if your answer is pretty weak and unsure, then just consider for a brief moment that this unproductive foftree could be a symbol of your life. You are alive. You have a โ€œplace.โ€ But are you producing fruit? Are you living as part of a bigger, overarching purpose?
You can find the answers to these questions. And they can make a positive difference in your life. And God wants you to find the answer!

Extending time to turn things around

The vineyard ownerโ€™s solution to this unproductive fig tree was blunt: โ€œCut it down; why does it use up the ground?โ€ (Luke 13:7).
This is a hard solution, and a final one. It shows us a truth about God. God is full of mercy and compassion. He is patient and loving. But God is also a God of judgment, and Christ is warning here that a time of final judgment will come on a lifeโ€”especially a life that has had opportunity, warning and the benefit of the doubt. When linked to the earlier statement unless you repent,โ€ we learn that thereโ€™s a way to avoid being โ€œcut downโ€ and considered of no value.
Donโ€™t be discouraged! The remainder of the parable shows us the way out!
The keeper of the vineyard answers the own: โ€œSir, let it alone this year also, the until I dig around it and fertilize it. And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that you can cut it downโ€ (Luke 13:8-9).
The keeper asks for one more year in which to work with the treeโ€”to turn it around and make it useful and productive. There are hope and every expectation that the wise and capable attention of the keeper will produce a new burst of productivity so that the next harvest will see fruit on the tree. That is the key thought here.
We can see that God is in a dual role here as both keeper and owner of the vineyard. This shows us that God both owns us and gives us room regrow spiritually, but He also expects us to produce โ€œfruitโ€โ€”the product of a life of good works of righteousness.
Galatians 5:22-23ย defines the kind of fruit God wants to see produced in our lives: โ€œBut the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.โ€ The apostle Paul explains here that these qualities are the fruit of Godโ€™s Spirit. They are what can be produced by God through our lives when we repent and believe the gospel, surrender ourselves to Him and allow our lives to be led by His Holy Spirit.
This parable of a barren fig tree is meant to teach us a vital truth. R, repentance is necessary, and it is possible with Godโ€™s help. He is patient and grants us time to change and bear fruit. Yet at the same time, none of us knows how much time we have leftโ€”so weโ€™d better get moving!
God in His judgment is always just, and only He understands the depth of your life. That He is aware and inspecting His โ€œvineyardโ€ to know the condition of each of His trees is a comfort. His desire is that none perish (2 Peter 3:9) but that all produce abundant fruit and inherit eternal life!

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WISDOM

Be blessed

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Nobodyโ€™s going to do your life for you.

You have to do it yourself, whether youโ€™re rich or poor, out of money or raking it in, the beneficiary of ridiculous fortune or terrible injustice.

And you have to do it no matter what is true.

No matter what is hard.

No matter what unjust, sad, sucky things befall you.

Self-pity is a dead-end road.

You choose to drive down it.

Itโ€™s up to you to decide to stay parked there or to turn around and drive out!

Iโ€™m on your side

I will lay me down

I will comfort you

I will lay me down

Like a bridge over troubled waters

All your dreams are on there way

Shalom

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Story Teller

Reach for the stars

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The rung of a ladder was never meant to rest upon, but only to hold a manโ€™s foot long enough to enable him to put the other somewhat higher.

Even if youโ€™re on the right track, youโ€™ll get run over if you just sit there.

Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.

Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle.

Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.

The history of the world is the history of a few people who had faith in themselves.

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.

Anyone can believe for the worst, but it takes a person of faith to believe for the best. Stand strong and set your mind on things above. Be a person of possibility and pave the way for victory! !

Gods unconditional love encourages more unconditional love!

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Interestingly see or hear a connection

More information later

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Story Teller

Who is really insane here

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The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.

The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.

I sometimes wonder who is eccentric or insane

Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them

What is insanity really? Walking in the storm of life and someone blocks you doing what you need to do!

When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

The sensibility of the house does not consist in the roof and walls, but in the space within to be lived in.

Anyone who knows anything of history knows that great social changes are impossible without feminine outburst.

Social advancement can be measured exactly by the social position of the fair sex

How can I go forward when I donโ€™t know which way Iโ€™m facing?

North, South, West or East

When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

Thereโ€™s nowhere you can be that isnโ€™t where youโ€™re meant to beโ€ฆ

The more I see, the less I know for sure.

I used to live in a room full of mirrors; all I could see was me. I take my spirit and I crash my mirrors, now the whole world is here for me to see.

You have to go on and be crazy. Craziness is like happiness with all the bells and whistles

The more I see, the less I know for sure.

Thatโ€™s ok too

Dust yourself off and try again tomorrow

Donโ€™t make those silly mistakes again

Landlords of menโ€™s egos

How can I go forward when I donโ€™t know which way Iโ€™m facing? like all other men, love to reap where they never sowed.

See these two hands thatโ€™s your Tatslotto in life

All you need is two hands to make money. Did you know that?

Only a foolish man thinks that he waits to inherit wealth

Maybe thatโ€™s the term for โ€ insanity โ€

Imagine this? Nonsense is the believer who worships money, he is so narcissistic he believes money-gathering generates him powerfully through the universe on his cock horse dressed in gold then all of a sudden he finds himself in a golden casket Dead! Stacked around him is one thousand dollar bills and imagine this โ€ Heโ€™s buried under the ground and he wakes up and whoโ€™s looking at him! Satan laughing . Satan pushes him over the edge, down he falls into the depth of Hells red hot blaze of hot misconception!

Know you tell me whoโ€™s insane!?

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