Summary: Jesus comes by our lives and looks for fruit.
Thank you Rev. P.W.Larue
SUBJECT: "CUT IT DOWN"
Matthew 21:17-22 Verse 17, "And he left them and went out of the city into Bethany: and he lodged there."
Luke 13:6, 7 "Then said he unto the dresser of his vineyard. Behold these three years I come seeking fruit on the fig tree and find none: cut it down; why cumbereth it the ground?"
CUT IT DOWN
My brothers and sisters, these are the words of Jesus, the master teacher. These are the words of a parable spoken by Jesus to convey an important message to a group of people. Now, a parable is a visible set over against an invisible, so that the invisible may be seen by the visible. In other words, a parable is an earthly story with a heavenly meaning. This parable is easy to understand because it is taken from a fig tree.
Now, in the Gospel according to St. Matthew 21:17-22 Jesus went out of the city. He left the temple in Jerusalem in route to Bethany. For you see, He had grown tired and weary. And as Jesus traveled to Bethany, He hungered on the way, for He had taken upon Himself our flesh. And He thirsted as we thirst. He hungered as we hunger. He suffered as we suffer. He got tied as we tied. And, the feeling of our infirmities touched him.
There in Bethany He would always find lodging perhaps in the home of Mary, Martha and Lazarus, where they would feed him a home cooked meal that was fit for the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Perhaps they would feed Him his favorite meal, fish and fig pie. Or perhaps Jesus would just make a shelter under a shade tree. For you see, Jesus had no place to lay His head. "Foxes have holes and birds have nests. But the Son of Man hath no where to lay His head."
Now, in the Gospel of St. Luke 13:6,7, He spoke a parable and this parable tells us about a "certain" man. Now, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, in fact throughout the New Testament, the word "certain" is used quite often. A "certain" ruler, a "certain" scribe, a "certain" king, a "certain" man had two sons, a "certain" poor widow, a "certain" household, a "certain" woman who has an issue of blood. A "certain" beggar, a "certain" Jew, a "certain" lame man, a "certain" blind man, a "certain" poor man, a "certain" maid, a "certain" sedition, a "certain" season, a "certain" centurion, a "certain" vessel, a "certain" sorcerer, a "certain" damsel, a "certain" priest, a "certain" Samaritan, a "certain" man went down from Jerusalem and he was beat-up, passed-up, picked-up, laid-up, and paid-up.
"A certain man had a fig tree," and the owner has become angry and
frustrated concerning the fig tree that he planted in his vineyard. Now, a fig tree is a conspicuous object that was planted by the vineyard dresser. This tree stood alone in the corner of the vineyard, protected by its walls and nourished by its specially prepared soil. A fig tree has been planted;
Not an Oak tree;
Not an Elm tree;
Not a Maple tree;
Not an Ash tree;
Not a Sycamore tree;
Not a Pine tree;
Not a Cedar tree, but a Fig tree.
For you see, the record tells us the owner did not plant an apple tree, a peach tree, a pear tree, or a cherry tree, but he planted a fig tree. And believe me when I tell you, there were two things that Jesus loved to eat and that was figs and fish. Jesus would always go down by the sea shore of Galilee and get some Fish-N-Chips. And then He would stop along the roadside and get some figs, for His dessert. Jesus loved figs. But, He has become extremely disturbed and highly disgusted with the fig tree. The man, "a certain man," the owner of the vineyard, is angered. And when you look at it, the owner represents God.
The vinedresser or the gardener represents Jesus Christ.
The Vineyard represents the Church.
The fig tree represents man. The fig tree that the owner is angry with represents humanity.
And oh brothers and sisters, the record tells us that the owner has come to the vineyard year after year. The owner has stopped by that location for three years in a row. But I think I ought to tell you that God owns us - God is the owner. He owns the silver and gold, He owns the cattle on a thousand hills and holds the whole wide world in His Hand.
He owns every bank, savings and loan, every stock, mutual savings fund, CD, Federal Reserve, every checking and savings account, every purse, wallet, Rolex Timex, Rolls-Royce, Jeep, Jaguar, house, apartment and condo. God owns every Gucci bag and every Wal-Mart special. We have been bought with a price.