Jesus curses the fruit tree

Jesus curses the fruit tree

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Both Matthew and Mark tell an interesting and curious story about Jesus and a fig tree. This story carries a profound message—even if it's not immediately apparent. To really understand the significance of this story, we need to dig into the background a bit. Jesus has just had His triumphant entry into Jerusalem, and He is going to cleanse the temple, which will push His relationship with the Sanhedrin past the point of no return. And the gospel writers want to ensure that we interpret the fig-tree incident in light of Jesus driving the money changers out of the temple.

  • Q & A with McGee
  • Clergy Stuff
  • Why did Jesus Curse the Fig Tree?
  • Jesus Curses the Fig Tree
  • The Mighty Miracles Of Jesus: The Withering Fig Tree
  • Why Did Jesus Curse the Fig Tree?
  • Passion Week: Why did Jesus curse the fig tree?
WATCH RELATED VIDEO: Why Did Jesus Curse The Fig Tree? Since It Wasn't Its Time To Produce Fruit

Q & A with McGee

Jesus, in the Synoptic Gospels, went to a fig tree looking for food to eat Matthew ; Mark ,When he saw that there were no figs on the tree he cursed it. Even before the season, fig trees produce little knobs which are eaten by a passerby.

As the late renowned NT scholar F. Bruce noted:. They feel that it is unlike Jesus, and so someone must have misunderstood what actually happened, or turned a spoken parable into an acted miracle, or something like that.

Some, on the other hand, welcome the story because it shows that Jesus was human enough to get unreasonably annoyed on occasion. It appears, however, that a closer acquaintance with fig trees would have prevented such misunderstandings. The fact that Mark adds these words shows that he knew what he was talking about. When the fig leaves appear about the end of March, they are accompanied by a crop of small knobs, called taqsh by the Arabs, a sort of fore-runner of the real figs.

These taqsh are eaten by peasants and others when hungry. They drop off before the real fig is formed. But if the leaves appear unaccompanied by taqsh, there will be no figs that year. So it was evident to our Lord, when He turned aside to see if there were any of these taqsh on the fig-tree to assuage His hunger for the time being, that the absence of the taqsh meant that there would be no figs when the time of figs came.

For all its fair foliage, it was a fruitless and a hopeless tree. At this time of year, such fig trees contained only green early figs Arabs call them taqsh , which ripen around June but often drop off before that time, leaving only green leaves on the tree. A leafy tree lacking such early figs, however, would bear no figs at all that year," Keener, A Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew [Wm. Eerdmans Publishing Company, July ], p.

Thus, what was thought to be an example against the veracity of the NT ends up actually becoming a rather persuasive argument for its historical reliability! This exemplifies the minute accuracy of the Synoptic Gospels, both in time and place, i. It also provides evidence for an early dating of Matthew and Mark - or, at the very least, shows that they were dependent on very old and early material - well before the fall of Jerusalem.

After all, the knowledge of these details would most likely have been lost or unknown to authors writing after the destruction of Jerusalem. Moreover, the cursing of the fig tree is a played or acted out parable, one which warned the nation of Israel of impending judgment. In the words of Messianic scholar David Stern:. But Yeshua is making a point by means of prophetic drama, acted-out parable possibly LkTanakh examples include Yirmiyahu, who bought and broke a clay bottle Jeremiah 19 , and Yechezk'el, who made and then burned up a model of Jerusalem Ezekiel ; for a later New Testament instance see AcEven out of season a fig tree in leaf - it must have been in leaf to be seen in the distance v.

The normal early season for figs in Israel is June, but the early unripe fruit Song of Songs begins to show itself even before the spring leaves appear on the branches, often before Passover. We know that Yeshua expects God's people to put forth the fruit of righteousness, and that unproductive branches are thrown in the fire Mt ; ; , ; YnThus, the drying-up of the fig tree is an acted-out warning. Yeshua neither acts from pique nor perform arbitrary miracles like a magician; every one of his supernatural acts has spiritual significance.

There will be no grapes on the vine. What I have given them will be taken from them. I will pursue them with the sword, famine and plague and will make them abhorrent to all the kingdoms of the earth and an object of cursing and horror, of scorn and reproach, among all the nations where I drive them. For they have not listened to my words,' declares the LORD, 'words that I sent to them again and again by my servants the prophets.

And you exiles have not listened either,' declares the LORD. But when they came to Baal Peor, they consecrated themselves to that shameful idol and became as vile as the thing they loved Ephraim is blighted, their root is withered, they yield no fruit. Even if they bear children, I will slay their cherished offspring.

I am like one who gathers summer fruit at the gleaning of the vineyard; there is no cluster of grapes to eat, none of the early figs that I crave. The godly have been swept from the land; not one upright man remains. All men lie in wait to shed blood; each hunts his brother with a net. Both hands are skilled in doing evil; the ruler demands gifts, the judge accepts bribes, the powerful dictate what they desire- they all conspire together. The best of them is like a brier, the most upright worse than a thorn hedge.

The day of your watchmen has come, the day God visits you. Now is the time of their confusion. The foregoing helps clarify why Jesus did what he did. Christ came searching for what the OT says Yahweh searches after, namely, an indication that Israel was a fruitful tree and not barren and dry. Yet instead of finding the early fig cf. Hosea ; Micah , which would have demonstrated that Israel was spiritually alive and capable of bearing the fruit which satisfies God, Christ found the nation spiritually dead and barren.

So he said to the man who took care of the vineyard, " For three years now I've been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and haven't found any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the soil? If it bears fruit next year, fine! If not, then cut it down. He put a wall around it, dug a pit for the winepress and built a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and went away on a journey. At harvest time he sent a servant to the tenants to collect from them some of the fruit of the vineyard.

But they seized him, beat him and sent him away empty-handed. Then he sent another servant to them; they struck this man on the head and treated him shamefully. He sent still another, and that one they killed. He sent many others; some of them they beat, others they killed.

He had one left to send, a son, whom he loved. He sent him last of all, saying, "They will respect my son. Come, let's kill him, and the inheritance will be ours. What then will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and kill those tenants and give the vineyard to others. Look, your house is left to you desolate.

The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side. They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God's coming to you. As it stands, there is no problem with Jesus cursing the fig tree, nor does this act undermine his absolute perfect Deity.

Clergy Stuff

On the surface, it might look as if Jesus simply lost his temper and used his supernatural power to punish a poor tree whose only crime was being in the wrong place during the wrong season. Famine was widely believed to be the work of the devil in apocalyptic thought, and barren or infected fig trees became symbols of this fact Mk ; Rom. More generally, Jesus was thus demonstrating that, where God reigns, the demonic corruption of nature will be in the process of being overcome. And he was showing that, when the Kingdom is fully manifested, the whole cosmos will be delivered from the oppressive Powers. There will then be no more famine, droughts or hunger. Nature shall produce abundant vegetation and fruit, as it was always intended to do.

Why does Jesus curse the fig tree? In the Old Testament, the fig tree was a symbol for the nation of Israel. Cursing the fig tree was Jesus' way of displaying.

Why did Jesus Curse the Fig Tree?

As Jesus and His disciples were traveling up to Jerusalem for what would be His final Passover with them in the flesh, He was hungry. When He came to it, He found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. And more than that, why was this recorded and preserved through the ages for us to read today? What does He expect us to see and learn from this story? In fact, commentaries and botany experts state that fig trees can bear fruit even before they sprout leaves. Since this tree was already full of leaves, it should have had fruit, if it were going to produce any that year. It was all promise, but no fulfillment. He rightly expected it should have had fruit.

Jesus Curses the Fig Tree

An oak tree died the other day Despite my constant care; Now men must carry it away And leave my garden bare. It came to leaf in early spring, To live 'twas guaranteed; Man is so vain and proud a thing, He vaunted God , indeed. For how can mortal guarantee The breath of life, and say That he can keep within a tree What God may take away? It cannot be that man can sense, As do the sun and rain, What living trees experience Of loneliness and pain. I think they never heard it sigh, Nor ever dreamed a tree Could, broken-hearted, pine and die, Who wrote that guarantee.

Early in the morning, as Jesus was on his way back to the city, he was hungry.

The Mighty Miracles Of Jesus: The Withering Fig Tree

It is certainly done as a form of parable and prediction. Symbolically and prophetically it means that Israel, represented by the fig tree, had a show of leaves outer superfluous righteousness but no real fruit of inner and actual righteousness. So yes, it is a parable in action about the fruitlessness of the Jewish nation, but why would Jesus expect figs before the season for figs and curse the tree for not yet having figs? Using my Verbum Bible and Catholic program I found between excellent explanations of this passage and there was a constant theme — fig trees have a precursor fruit, an early edible fruit called taqsh that appears with the leaves, before the actual full fig. If a tree has new leaves but no taqsh then it will not bear the figs later in the year. If you are really hungry as it says Jesus was the peasants ate the taqsh like Jesus expected to do.

Why Did Jesus Curse the Fig Tree?

Remember me. Log in. Lost your password? No products in the basket. Trees that folk tradition associates with curses? And trees that we are happy to accept their fruits but are not welcome in our garden? Many do not want it in their garden because of the curse of Christ as a folk tradition refers. The reason is a misunderstood excerpt from the Gospel of Mark

When Jesus is walking to Jerusalem, he is hungry and finds a fig tree by the side of the road. He expects to find a bit of fruit.

Passion Week: Why did Jesus curse the fig tree?

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RELATED VIDEO: The Withered Fig Tree

Your Name required. Your Email required. Your Message. On the following day, when they came from Bethany, he was hungry. And seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to see if he could find anything on it. When he came to it, he found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs.

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.

Page Comments Please leave a comment for this page. View all Comments. As Jesus was returning to the city he was hungry. He saw a fig tree far off. He went over to it to see if there were any figs on it, even though it was not the season for figs. The tree had only leaves on it.

Toward the beginning of Mark 11, Jesus goes to eat from a fig tree. However, the fig tree has not bore any fruit and he curses it. Then, after clearing out the temple, Peter sees that the cursed fig tree is now withered. But why did Jesus curse the fig tree?