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Summary: Through all the ups and downs, mountains and valleys, joys and sorrows, victories and defeats, good days and bad days, God has blessed us to see one more year. Many people died this year. We are alive. We have all the reasons to say "Hallelujah & Amen."

“CAPITALIZE ON YOUR BORROWED TIME”

LUKE 13:1-9: 1 There were present at that season some that told Jesus of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2 And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? 3 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. 4 Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? 5 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. 6 He spake also this parable; A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came and sought fruit thereon, and found none. 7 Then said he unto the dresser of his vineyard, Behold, these three years I come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and find none: cut it down; why cumbereth it the ground? 8 And he answering said unto him, Lord, let it alone this year also, till I shall dig about it, and dung it: 9 And if it bear fruit, well: and if not, then after that thou shalt cut it down.

INTRODUCTION: “CAPITALIZE ON YOUR BORROWED TIME” – THANK CHURCH & EVERYONE.

Illustration: Man tells wife killing flies - got 4 males, 3 females – 4 on beer can, 3 on telephone.

We Are Blessed To See One More Year. Through all the ups and downs, mountains and valleys, joys and sorrows, victories and defeats, good days and bad days, we can see one more year. That should be enough for someone to say “Amen”. Enough to say “thank you Jesus”. A reason enough to let out a “Hallelujah”. One more year where we begin 6 feet above rather than 6 feet below.

WHAT DO YOU KNOW ABOUT BORROWED TIME?

It Is Common To Hear People Talk About Living On Borrowed Time. We use it to describe somebody who has survived a major heart attack, a malignant cancer, a major accident, a near death experience. It means somebody is alive who should have been dead. And come to think of it, that's all of us – For the wages of sin is death. We should all be dead since the moment we were conceived with a sin nature. Death could have taken us in the womb, in the crib, on the playground, at school, at work, home, streets, etc. Enough problems to take us: Depression, diseases, disappointments, failures, threats, lies, hate, deception, etc. Thank God the tower didn't fall on us. Thank God Pilate’s soldiers did not kill us. We are still alive. It is God’s borrowed time, not man’s. Why God? Because God is merciful, compassionate towards sinners and holds back His anger.

A LOOK AT THE PASSAGE

This Passage Occurs During The Last Year Of Jesus’ Public Ministry - Year Of Controversy. Jewish leaders were seeking to silence Him. Here, He is teaching in Judea before a multitude. For them, bad things happen to good people because they sin. Pilate (Roman Governor) killed some Galileans (Jews from Jesus’ region) and mingled their blood with their sacrifices. Tower in Siloam (Jerusalem) fell and killed 18 people. Were they worse sinners? Examples: Job, Hebrew Boys; Elizabeth & Zechariah; Tsunami killed 100,000+; Christians beheaded; tornadoes & flooding in South & Midwest; people sick, some lost loved ones, etc. Why does God allow such? The victims were worse sinners? For Jews, yes. For Jesus, No! God expects repentance. Then He gives a parable.

WHAT IS PARABLE?

A Parable Is A Simple Story To Illustrate A Truth. Jesus used parables. The parable moves from familiar to a truth which challenges the hearer. Example: Why should a shepherd risk his life to find a lost sheep when 99 are safe? Parables: The Sower, The Wheat & Weeds, The Rich Fool, The Two Builders, The Thief in the Night, The Ten Virgins, The Wedding Feast, The Rich Man & Lazarus, The Good Samaritan, The Prodigal Son, The Lost Coin & Lost Sheep, etc.

ABOUT THE FIG TREE: THIS IS YOU – COMING OUT OF 2015 & GOING INTO 2016.

1. This Fig Tree Was Planted In A Vineyard (Luke 13:6).

Fig Trees Are Mentioned 60+ Times In The Bible. They were & are very common & valuable In Israel. Adam & Eve using its leaves to cover nakedness. Figs were vital part of the Hebrew diet. The first ripe figs were valued. Good figs were images of believers. Rotten figs of wicked men. The fig tree was often a symbol of Israel. Fig trees would grow to about 25ft high & 20ft wide. The fruit was like a small plum / mango. They provided fruits about 2-3 times a year. They grew on their own but flourished well when catered to. Great shade trees because of the density and the size.

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