Luke 13 (NKJV)
6 He also spoke this parable: “A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none.
7 “Then he said to the keeper of his vineyard, ‘Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground?’
8 “But he answered and said to him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it.
9 ‘And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that you can cut it down.'”
Some thoughts that I gleaned from Matthew Henry’s Commentary on these verses:
This parable is about the Nation of Israel, but I’m thinking that it’s also about us.Follow my thinking and see if you don’t agree:
The first thing I had never thought of before – This tree had great advantages.
- It was planted in a vineyard, in better soil,
- Fig trees did not usually grow in vineyards, but by the way-side, Mt 21:19.
- This fig tree belonged to a certain man. It’s not a wild tree.
2. The owner had expectation from it:
- He came, and sought fruit from it.
- He did not send someone else, but came himself “seeking fruit.”
Our Heavenly Father requires and expects fruit from those that have a place in his vineyard.
- He has his eye upon us who hear the gospel, to see whether we live up to it;
- Leaves will not serve, crying, Lord, Lord;
- Blossoms will not serve, beginning well and promising fair;
- There must be fruit.
What the owner found:
He found none, none at all, not one fig.
- How many of us enjoy the privileges of salvation, and yet do nothing at all pass it on.
- He had waited long,
- He was disappointed.
- He was not high in his expectations, he only expected fruit, not much fruit,
- He was not hasty, he came three years, year after year:
The Father says “Cut it down.”
5. The dresser’s intercession for it.
What it is he prays for – “Lord, let it alone this year also.”
- He does not pray, “Lord, let it never be cut down,”
- Instead he says, “not now. Lord”
- Sometimes it might be desirable to reprieve a barren tree.
- We need the mercy to give them space to repent.
- Maybe we also ought to do our duty to help them.
The final warning is that God will not bear with us forever. His patience will have an end.
Barren trees will be cut down at last, and cast into the fire.
However – we gotta let Him do the cutting. Our hands have no business in the process.
Praying for fruitfulness: