The Application of the Fig Tree
Jesus said that when the fig tree puts forth its buds, be aware that his coming is, “right at the door,” (Matthew 24:33). This indicates Jesus’ coming is near and imminent. James likewise says, “You, too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near…The Judge is standing at the door!” (James 5:8-9.) And note the words of Revelation 3:20 where Jesus says, “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock….”
From now until the day Jesus returns, God gives us the opportunity of salvation. Even when we face calamities and crises, we need not be dismayed or disheartened. We pray, we go about our service to the Lord, we fight the good fight of faith.
It’s much the same as someone observing the budding of the fig tree. We observe the signs of the times patiently, carefully, and expectantly according to the Word of God. We live by example as we share our faith in Christ with others. This is the lesson of the parable as Jesus urges us to persevere and live for him in watchfulness.
This is what being a Christian is all about. The moment we enter into Christ through faith, repentance, and baptism we relinquish all we have to him. We look at life differently. We study God’s Word and find out that….hmmm….the parable of the fig tree is more than an interesting story. It applies to my future, my aims in life. I have already opened the door of my heart to Jesus. He is in my house—my life. Will I keep my house in order? Summer is coming; I want to have everything ready when he actually DOES break through the clouds!
When conversion takes place, our eyes are opened to the fact that….Christ wants me to be different than those who do not follow him. He wants me to give an answer to those who would ask what I believe (1 Peter 3:15). He wants me to be prepared by keeping myself under the control of his Spirit (Romans 8:5-13). He wants me to turn to him for forgiveness whenever I do wrong (1 John 1:9). The fig tree is budding and I do not know how much more time I have. Will I waste it on frivolous stuff that has no meaning, that leads to nowhere but a lake of fire at the end?
In view of the fig tree, we live for the Lord with a trusting life. We say to ourselves, How do I see the fig tree — through doom and gloom or as a source of inspiration and hope? Am I going to fret and sweat over my own problems or will I put my faith in the Lord who has promised that he would never forsake me (Deuteronomy 31:6; Hebrews 13:5)? Do I really believe that he will be with me even to the end of the age, just as he said (Matthew 28:20)? Do I rely completely on him as I keep my eyes on his promises or am I putting my trust in other sources for guidance (Proverbs 3:5)?
When Jesus said, “Now learn a parable of the fig tree…” he was teaching an important lesson that we need to learn as believers. The lesson is that we need to be ready for he could come sooner than we think (Matthew 24:44; Luke 12:40). Israel is the fig-tree nation that God has established as a sign for believers to show that his coming is getting closer everyday (Hosea 9:10; Jer. 24:5; Matt. 24:32, 33). And the events in Israel as well as all the nations in the Middle East provide prophetic proof of the nearness of his return. Get ready for that Great Day!
Good News to you!