Lessons From the Fig Tree
Our focus is on the relationship between words, belief and results.
Mark 11:20–25 (ESV)
Jesus’ statements begin and end by pointing out that we are accountable to God.
- Key Statements:
- “Have faith in God”;
- ”Forgive. . .so that your Father. . .may forgive. . .your trespasses”
- You can’t say and do whatever you want and expect God to endorse it.
- Many people read this passage and don’t come away with that.
- Let me tell you why.
- There are two layers of confusion about the application of Jesus ‘statements
- Confusion about Language: People don’t realize that they are misapplying this Scripture because they confuse the language of the passage with the language of positive thinking and of New Age Spirituality.
- Does not doubt
- It will be done
- Ask, Believe, Receive
- Confusion about Results:
- You don’t need God to be successful.
- You can have God and be a failure.
- 2 Corinthians 11:12–15 (ESV)
- The world seeks first the things and then adds God to them.
- Here’s part of the deception:
- The enemy promotes you when he is setting you up for a fall.
- Proverbs 24:1 – 1 Be not envious of evil men, nor desire to be with them,
- Proverbs 24:19-20 –19 Fret not yourself because of evildoers, and be not envious of the wicked, 20 for the evil man has no future; the lamp of the wicked will be put out.
These principles apply to everyone, not just the apostles.
- Mark 11:23 (ESV)
Jesus makes comments about two different forms of speaking:
- Speaking to things (“say to this mountain”)
- Speaking to God (“ask in prayer)
- Mark 11:23–24 (ESV)
- Speaking to things
- The Bible says that you can move of mountains, not create mountains.
- Mountain moving might simply be one of the ways we resist the devil rather than an invitation to speak whatever we want into existence.
- Satan’s not omnipresent or all powerful, so Satan leverages the fallen state of the world to harass you.
- The fallen state of the world is not just about morality, but also about the physical conditions of life (which encompass natural disasters and sickness).
- Jesus not only resisted Satan, but also the works of Satan: Acts 10:38 (ESV)
- Speaking to God (prayer)
- You receive what you’re asking for twice: once in your heart and secondly in your physical reality.
Prayer requires us to live to desire and die to desire.
- Mark 11:24 (ESV)
- Jesus did not receive everything He asked for in prayer.
- Luke 22:41–42 (ESV)
Faith is more about persistence than size
- Luke 17:1–6 (ESV)
- Luke 11:9–10 (ESV)
- Luke 11:9–10 (AMP) – 9 “So I say to you, ask and keep on asking, and it will be given to you; seek and keep on seeking, and you will find; knock and keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who [a]keeps on asking [persistently], receives; and he who keeps on seeking [persistently], finds; and to him who keeps on knocking [persistently], the door will be opened.
We need a steady diet of saying, praying and thanking multiple times a day.
Healing Testimonies and Sermons That Describe How These Principles Are Applied
© Joshua D. Smith, Ph.D., 2022