Summary: Judgment nature of Christ should not be over looked and the sad shape of the church


Matthew 21:18-20

Introduction: This parable stays alone in the midst of the thirty-seven miracles of Christ as recorded in the Bible. We know that John 21:25 tells us that if all that if all that Jesus had done would have been written down, the world could not contain all the books. So we know that Christ did more than thirty-seven miracles.

The reason why this miracle stands alone is it is the only one recorded of a destructive nature. Critics of Christ point to this miracle and try to criticize Christ saying He acted impulsive and showed impatience when He cursed this tree. They overlook several key facts.

1. They are acknowledging that He had the power to wither the tree. In their acknowledgement, they actually caused us to look up to Him and His power.

2. Every action of Christ was deliberate. He never acted out of impulse. That would have made been Him weak, out of control and very much a sinful human.

3. All His action set forth as an example or a truth that we must learn. As like the other messages I have preached on Bible Miracles A-Z, I will do my best to show practical applications to vital Christian living.


Nothing disgraces the character of Christ. Malachi 3:6 tells us “”For I am the Lord, I change not.” The writer of Hebrews echoes this call with these words ”Jesus Christ, the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8) If nothing disgraced Him in eternity past, surely nothing could disgraced Him on this day either.

A. Character of Christ as seen in His judgments

Isaiah 28:21

“For the LORD shall rise up as in mount Perazim, he shall be wroth as in the valley of Gibeon, that he may do his work, his strange work; and bring to pass his act, his strange act.”

Brother Forester said that judgment is God’s strange work; He loves to bless.

Through all the Gospels, one theme seems to run true. He was moved with compassion or He was showing mercy. He showed mercy upon the demons when He allowed them to enter the swine. But He was showing compassion upon the man who they lived in previously. He knew this man’s life. It had been one of pain, peril and perverseness. He had compassion when the man came to Him and wanted help. We do not why he was infested with demons but at least he came to the right source for deliverance. (I will go in more detail on this man next week.)

He is showing mercy and compassion in that He chose a soulless tree to execute His judgment. He had all right to judgment upon people many times. He had done so in Luke 9 when the Samaritan people refused to allow Him in their village.

This miracle was performed that man might not lose sight of His judicial character. One day, He will be the judge of all. Many have lose sight of this very fact. This includes believers. They have forgotten that they will one day they will stand before Him. It will not be the question of salvation. It will be to answer for their life since they were saved. One of the key areas will be in the area of faithfulness.

2 Corinthians 5:10

“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.”

The words that I believe most people would like to hear and this includes myself are the words recorded in the Gospel of Matthew chapter 25 and verse 21 which says “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.”

Some people and in fact most of humanity will stand before Him at the Great White Throne Judgment. Let me read a passage that pertains to this. Since this is not my topic (Great White Throne Judgment), I will let the scriptures speak for themselves. Revelation 20:10-15

“And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is [the book] of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”

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Greg Whitaker

commented on Aug 13, 2013

Great message. Jesus did not have to destroy the tree. God had only to with hold His protection and nurture and the tree withered as a result. Fruitless trees use their leaves to cover their naked barrenness.

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