As we approach Palm Sunday, the day Jesus triumphantly entered Jerusalem, I’m drawn to the scripture about the fig tree. This account is in Matthew 21:18-22 and in Mark 11:12-14 & 20-25.
Jesus was on his way back into the city one morning, He is hungry and sees a fig tree ahead. When he gets to the tree, He sees that there is no fruit. There should be fruit, after all it has leaves and it is the time of year that figs should be on it. He curses the tree saying “May you never bear fruit again.” When He said this the tree withered.
The disciples are amazed and ask how could it so quickly wither? Jesus then talks to them about faith and not doubting. As important as belief, faith and not doubting are, I would like to look at something else.
Chances are Jesus had walked this path the day before. He had entered the city in triumph and had cleared the temple area of the money changers. He had healed the blind and the lame. He left and went to Bethany for the night. I believe He knew that tree was there, He knew the condition it was in and wanted to make a point that shouldn’t be lost on us.
How often in our lives are we fig trees with leaves but no fruit? How often are we “Christians” but are not bearing fruit to glorify God? Are we “church-wise”? Remember that God looks on our hearts not on our façade.
I know that I have been guilty of this in my life. Are you? If we are really going to claim to be Christians, we can’t be worldly. We can’t be “double-minded” men! Our words and actions must match. We cannot compromise the Gospel. We must be loving and bold to seek God’s approval and not the approval of man.
“But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve………..But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15.
This is not an easy decision. It goes against everything the world tells us to do. It comes with a cost. But at its heart, this is the very purpose of RAMP. For men to be the men God has called them to be. To accept that this will not be popular and it will come with a price. But if we do this, if we seek Him, if we go against the grain of what the world demands; how much glory will this bring the Father, how pleased will our Savior be, how different of a family would we have?
We will only know if we do what we talk about. We will only know when our words and actions match. We will only know when we ask God to “Make Me” for His glory. I pray for you brothers and hope that we are praying for each other.
Always running to the cross!