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. Mark 11:13
We make the estimation that if we want figs, now is the moment. Fruit trees, in my humble opinion, are finicky and very much underappreciated. My father-in-law has a tree that he has grafted four other fruits on, essentially spreading out an exquisite harvest over the entire summer. Jesus was gravitated to this particular tree. He went to it, anticipating some good fruit– figs.
The tree had nothing. He looked up and through the leaves. There was absolutely nothing to be found. Jesus comes to us, and we open up to Him, to share our fruit. But, there is nothing.
The secret to embracing this scripture is in one word: Disappointment. Jesus was disappointed when he examined the tree. The fig tree represents Israel, which had zilch to offer the spiritually hungry. To focus on fruit was a lost cause, for it had nothing to give anyone. To be sure, there was a whole lot of green leaves, and from a distance it looked wonderful.
The church, on the other hand, is to be fruitful. The fruit is produced in a whole other way. The churches fruit is to be readily available, and completely accessible to everyone who is hungry. Our energy should not be seen in leaf production that looks really good. We are to produce fruit.
We are totally different. We are to give food to the hungry, refreshment to the weary, comfort to the sorrowing, and to meet the souls that come expecting. Our fruit has to be readily available to every seeking soul that comes along.
It’s not about us, the tree. That is the confusion in the covenant people of Jesus’ time. It is the fruit, rich and luscious that is the focus. Not leaves, or branches, or trunk– but fruit. Show me the fruit! FRUIT! That is the mark of authenticity.
Our Lord asks that we become people that are always in season. When Jesus faced down the fig tree, it wasn’t ready. It could not deliver. As New Testament believers, filled up with the Holy Spirit, (in a way incomprehensible to Old Testament believers), are to be fresh and fruitful. There should be no off-season. We are to be ready for anyone, at anytime. His Spirit flows through us. He has made us green, and full of fruit.
“that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God” Col. 1:10