Why Did Jesus Curse The Fig Tree?

We can see a radical faith in the Bible characters from both the Old and New Testament. They were those who never gave up on their faith regardless of their circumstance. Take the case of Moses; he stood firm in his faith through it all. He was a face-to-face prophet. Being the only person in the Old Testament known to have spoken to God, he had an unmoving faith. The course of history through their radical faith. By developing such a radical faith you will see a noticeable change in your life and in your ways. Your situations in life will change according to your faith in God. The direction of a righteous man is upwards towards our God. Everyone who believes in Jesus is a righteous person and their life is never directed downwards.
 
Having such a radical faith is not always an easy path like one might think. Abraham who was known as the “The Father Of Faith”went through fluctuations in his faith life but he obtained the certificate “Friend of Friend” because he stood his faith. There are moments of doubt and hardships but it is upto us to be brave and stand firm in God and go forward and be called “The Friend Of God”. Just like how faith brought down the walls of Jericho, one’s faith can do many miraculous things in life.
 
Today we are going to look into the portion where Jesus cursed the fig tree. This is the only time we see him curse anything/ anyone.
 
Why did Jesus curse the fig tree ? What was the reason behind it ? What is the lesson that we should learn from this that we may apply in our daily life ?
 
Mark 11:12-14, 19-25
12 The next day as they were leaving Bethany, Jesus was hungry. 13 Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to find out if it had any fruit. When he reached it, he found nothing but leaves, because it was not the season for figs. 14 Then he said to the tree, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.” And his disciples heard him say it.
19 When evening came, Jesus and his disciples went out of the city.
20 In the morning, as they went along, they saw the fig tree withered from the roots. 21 Peter remembered and said to Jesus, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree you cursed has withered!”

 
Reading this passage, we might find it odd that Jesus cursed a fig tree that wasn’t bearing fruit due to issues of seasonality. Then why did Jesus curse the fig tree? Was he justified in doing so? But if Jesus did so, then there would have been a lesson for us to learn.
In Israel, the fig tree normally bears fruit along with the leaves. Accordingly, the significance of the leaves here means that the tree should bear fruit but it wasn’t the case here. So if it was not the season for the fig fruits, then there should be no leaves as well.  In other words, it is similar to that of a hypocrite. Jesus was trying to explain that leaves and fruits must go together. This tree signifies the deceptive nature of a hypocrite who pretends to have fruits but has none. And Jesus curses the hypocrites who pretends to have fruits and hence deceives people. Either you should have both or have none at all.
 
There is a powerful curse on fruitlessness.
 
John 15:6
If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.
 
The lesson here is to be fruitful, that is the sole reason why we were put into this world. If there is some fruit, we are pruned, but if there is no fruit, we are cut off and thrown into the fire. We have all been put here with a purpose and those who don’t meet their purpose are by default, cursed.
 
For example, the fruit of salvation is “good works”.
 
Ephesians 2:10
10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
 
A tree is known by its fruits. A good tree bears good fruits and a bad one bears bad fruits.
 
Matthew 7.15-20 
“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
 
God has created us like a tree to bear fruit. We see this analogy mentioned many times in Scripture.
 
Psalm 1.2-3
but whose delight is in the law of the LORD, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither— whatever they do prospers.
 
God expects trees to bear fruits. If it does not bear fruit, it is cursed.
 
2 Timothy 4:2  Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.
 
Paul instructs Timothy to be ready all the time to preach and instruct others in the Word. We should always be prepared in all seasons .i.e. all the time. For a child of God, there is no off season.
 
In the context of Jesus’ second coming also, we are asked to always be prepared. Matthew 25 describes the parable of ten virgins, five of whom were not ready.  
 
As food for thought, have you wondered why Mark says that the fig tree dried up the following day but according to Matthew, the tree immediately dried up? We shall dwell more into this tomorrow and find out the true meaning.

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About the Author
Dr. Damien Antony
Born and brought up in a Christian family, Dr. Damien Antony possessed an unquenching quest for truth right from his boyhood days and eventually his relentless search led him to the Bible. He is a Revival Preacher, Bible Teacher, Leadership Trainer, Author and a Life Coach. He moves under the anointing for Prophetic, Healing, Deliverance, Inner Healing and Financial Breakthrough. God has also blessed him with an Apostolic Mandate to take the Universal Body of Christ to the next level of revelation and anointing.

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