Thursday, July 7, 2011

Who gives a Flying Fig?

[18] In the morning, as he was returning to the city, he became hungry. [19] And seeing a fig tree by the wayside, he went to it and found nothing on it but only leaves. And he said to it, "May no fruit ever come from you again!" And the fig tree withered at once.
[20] When the disciples saw it, they marveled, saying, "How did the fig tree wither at once?" [21] And Jesus answered them, "Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, 'Be taken up and thrown into the sea,' it will happen. [22] And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith." Matthew 21:18-22 (ESV)

I’ll just be honest, these words scare the hell out of me at times. I’m left thinking then why hasn’t Utah converted to Lutheranism yet? Exactly why is it I don’t have…. In the end though, I am also often amazed at the prayers that are answered.
It’s a big if clause though. There are a few things that need to be taken into account. First, Jesus spoke this to the disciples. This very well wasn’t spoken as something that would be true of all Christians, who are given different and varied gifts. 2. The Disciples at the time they asked about this, were not able to do it themselves, and yet one would be hard pressed to say they didn’t have faith. So it really shouldn’t bother one that he can’t make a fig tree wither up. I mean who really gives a flying fig.
And even if you could make a fig tree wither, I’d much rather have the ability to change water into wine, it doesn’t mean you have faith. I’m reminded of Matthew 25 here, it was the goats who claimed to have done great things in the name of Jesus, something that comes to mind as I pass the Pentecostal church claiming an healing ministry in town. The sheep really were not at all aware of what they had done. Just things to consider.

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