Of Crabtrees and Figtrees

Recently, I’ve been thinking about causality, and how we as believers tend to look for the effect, rather than the cause in our lives. Many times, that is because it is both more simplistic and more readily apparent to focus on the externals.  I was reminded of Christ’s example that we find in Matthew’s gospel, where we are given a dramatic lesson in cause and effect.

Matthew 21: 19-22. 19Seeing a lone fig tree by the road, He came to it and found nothing on it except leaves only; and He said to it, “No longer shall there ever be any fruit from you.” And at once the fig tree withered. 20Seeing this, the disciples were amazed and asked, “How did the fig tree wither all at once?” 21And Jesus answered and said to them, “Truly I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what was done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and cast into the sea,’ it will happen. 22″And all things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive.”

A fig tree is different from another tree in that it is expected to bear figs. That may sound like a simplistic observation, however it strikes to the root of what Christ was working to teach his disciples; that is, that a living faith produces results naturally, just as naturally as a fig tree produces figs. Christ goes on to say that a strong faith in him produces incredible results.

Spurgeon said, “Truly the Lord Jesus is the very best of masters, and it is an honor to be allowed to do the least act for His sake. To serve some lords is to watch over a crab tree and eat the crabs as one’s wages; but to serve my Lord Jesus is to keep a fig tree of the sweetest figs. His service is in itself delight, continuance in it is promotion, success in it is blessedness below, and the reward for it is glory above. Our greatest honors will be gathered in that season when the figs will be ripe, even in the next world. Angels who are now our servitors will bear us home when our day’s work is done. heaven, where Jesus is, will be our honorable mansion; eternal bliss, our honorable portion; and the Lord Himself, our honorable companion. Who can imagine the full meaning of this promise, “He that waiteth on his master shall be honored?”

Does your fruit reflect the vine that you are a part of?

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