Wednesday, July 29, 2009

My Fig Tree Is A Lemon!

Ray Stedman shared this amazing insight into the lesson of the fig tree. He wrote:

“When I came to California, I planted a fig tree just to see what it would do and to learn from it. I learned the answer to this riddle from the fig tree in my yard. The first spring, I watched with interest as the barren limbs of that tree began to swell, the buds began to fill out, and the leaves began to appear. And to my astonishment (I did not know this about a fig tree) little figs appeared right along with the leaves. I thought, ‘Well, that’s strange: the fruit comes right along with the leaf. Fig trees must be very unusual that way.’ So I watched these little figs grow and turn from green to yellow, and begin to look as if they were ripe.

One day I sampled one. To my amazement, instead of being full of juice and pulp as a normal fig would be, it was dry and withered inside, with no juice at all. I opened another, and another, and found the same thing. I thought, ‘Oh, my fig tree is a lemon!’

But then, to my amazement, I saw [over time] that the tree began to swell and grow bigger. And when I opened one, I saw that it was a normal fig, ripe and juicy and filled with pulp. And the tree has borne a great crop of figs ever since. So I learned something: a fig tree has two kinds of figs-—one that I call “pre-figs”, which look like figs but are not figs but which always appear first. I learned that a tree does not have those pre-figs, it will not have real figs later on.

This is the explanation for what Jesus found: it was not the season for real figs. But when Jesus looked at this tree, he found no pre-figs, and so He knew that this tree would never have figs, hut produced nothing but leaves. The life of the tree had been spent producing its luxuriant foliage, so that it looked like a healthy tree, hut was not.”

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