I am so very human so very often, and the times that I am most aware of it is when I get in the flesh over spiritual matters. It seems like an oxymoron but its truth none the less. So this morning as I read the scripture in Mark of Jesus’ frustration with the money changers my mind drifted to empty seats and lackadaisical attitudes toward church attendance and Christian service. I had to wonder why this story was in the middle of the story of the fig tree? I get Jesus’ frustrations with fruitless lives, and I can more than understand His frustrations with thievery in the church house, but what does one have to do with the other? Pew sitters seems a far cry from what the money changers were doing that caused Jesus to throw tables over and drive people out for using God’s house for their own gain rather than the soul saving station and to edify the church. But then I began to think of the cost of an apathetic attitude toward the work of God, and the number of them who attend church, I understood why God could pair those two stories together.
Unfruitful servants of God are like that tree and the money changers in the fact that they rob God of the fruit He so desires. I’d also have to include myself in that category, because I could certainly do more fruit baring. Jesus’ closing words Peter, when asked why the tree died, was “Have faith in God.”
It was a kick in the pants to me, as if to say, “Let God handle everyone else Shari, you worry about your fruit.”
And on the morrow, when they were come from Bethany, he was hungry: And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply he might find any thing thereon: and when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet. And Jesus answered and said unto it, No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever. And his disciples heard it. And they come to Jerusalem: and Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves; And would not suffer that any man should carry any vessel through the temple. And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves. And the scribes and chief priests heard it, and sought how they might destroy him: for they feared him, because all the people was astonished at his doctrine. And when even was come, he went out of the city. And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. And Peter calling to remembrance saith unto him, Master, behold, the fig tree which thou cursedst is withered away. And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.