Skip to content Skip to main navigation Skip to footer

Day 36 | Withering the Tree

Read Mark 11:12-21

There is an expectation from God to His professing followers. There’s no expectation for our salvation, minus our faith in Jesus, but because of the gracious and undeserving salvation we receive by His grace and His work on the Cross, there is an expectation of how to demonstrate and live out that salvation. Jesus often refers to this demonstration of our receiving grace and salvation as “fruit.” We are to produce the Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5), good works that point others to God (Matthew 5), and live in a way that is holy similar to His holiness (1 Peter 1). Jesus holds people who have been exposed to the truth of His Word to a higher standard: His standard.

We witness the collision of God’s expectations and fruitless religious elites in Mark 11. Before Jesus goes into the corrupt and fruitless temple, He foreshadows the impending judgment that will fall on religious people that fail to bear the fruit of God in their lives by making a non-fruit-producing fig tree wither and die. We see a physical example of the negligence of bearing spiritual fruit in Jesus’ cursing of the fig tree. The result of not producing fruit is death, and the religious leaders in the temple were about to get a first-hand lesson. As Jesus walked into the temple, He saw that there was activity, but not the kind that God expects from His people. Jesus tells us in Luke 6 that “a tree will be known by its fruit,” and this particular temple was not producing good things.

It is imperative that we ask ourselves, “What are the fruits of my life?” Do we know the expectations that God places on those saved by His grace? Do we strive to live in a way that honors God and others? Does love, joy, peace, patience, self-control, and goodness resonate from us? Do we demonstrate a saved and changed life, purchased by the mercy and sacrifice of Jesus Christ? Because Jesus has freed us from much, we are called upon by Him to live a life that demonstrates that freedom.

Pray for 10 minutes