Volume 14, Issue 1 _________________________________Bible Prophecy Ministry

Israel And The Fig Tree. . .Page 2

      Jesus knew there were no figs on the tree even at a great distance away, and indeed everyone of the disciples knew that the season for figs was still early a little early. So, in essence Jesus was exposing the disciples to the fact that their nation of Israel was not yet ready to produce fruit for the Lord either. But alas, remember, a fig tree produces not one harvest, but two harvests in a growing season.

      The fig tree normally produces a crop of figs in late June, and then again another crop comes along in early September. That first crop is produced on the branch grown the previous season.

      The first crop produced by the Branch is symbolic of the harvest of the Church. It was to the Gentile world that Jesus turned his attention, after Israel had bypassed its time of visitation.

      Acts 15:19 says: Simeon hath declared how God at first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name.

      Israel did indeed produce the righteous Branch, but the first crop of good figs has been cultivated from the nations of the rest of the world, instead of Israel.

      Israel, by failing to acknowledge the timely visit of their Messiah, was thus subjected to the soil ( world ) of the earth, and became dried up and dispersed from its originally planted spot, to await yet another visitation, or season of harvest.

      Make no mistake about it though, Gods promises to the prophet Jeremiah concerning the good basket of figs still remains intact. God still intends to glean a second harvest from the fig tree of Israel, but only after that fig tree ( Israel ) has again put forth its leaves; and produces another budding of the fig tree later on in the growing season.

      Why has this taken place, and when will the rebudding season of the fig tree take place?

      Romans 11:25, For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, till the "Fullness of the Gentiles" be come in.

      The church is grafted onto the righteous "Branch" (Jesus ) of Israel, and Israel is indeed our tree of heritage, with the God of Israel being the root of it all.

      For nearly 2000 years, Israel had lain dormant, like that old barren fig tree that Jesus cursed. Like the old fig tree, Israel was uprooted from the land, and left in desolation, while the Gentile nations have tread across the land of Israel. Jesus said this condition would persist until the Times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. ( Luke 21:24)

      Jeremiah prophesied that Israel would be fruitless at the time of their initial visitation, and would lose their land at the first seasonal opportunity.

      Jeremiah 8:13, I will surely consume them, saith the Lord: there shall be no grapes on the vine, nor “figs on the fig tree” and leaf shall fade; and the things that I have given them shall pass away from them.

      The fading leaf of the fig tree is a prophetic foreglimpse of the apostate condition of the church in the Last Days when the fig tree of Israel shall indeed begin to rebud for its season of finally producing good figs.

      The word "Gentile", is a translation of the Hebrew word, "Goy", with "Goyim" being the plural form of the word for Gentile Nations. The phrase that Jesus used, "Times of the Gentiles", is a term which is synonymous with the Biblical concept of Gentile history; based on the two-fold relationship of the nations of the world with God, and his relationship with his selected nation, Israel. It could more aptly be termed as "the Times of the Nations".

      The times of the Nations historically and Biblically commenced with Israel's demise at the hands of Nebuchadnezzar, as has already been pointed out, and those times of the Gentiles have continued right on up to the present day.

      Thence, we come to the specific point of the usage by Jesus of the analogy he used in comparing Israel with his parable of the fig tree. Again he said:

      "Now learn a parable of the fig tree; when his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:"

      The command to "learn" is invoked in this usage. What have we learned from the fig tree? We know that Israel was the good figs that God promised to restore a kingdom to; and that when God sent forth HIS Branch, ( Jesus ) that while it was still yet "tender", that the branch ?( Jesus ) would be "cut off"; ( killed ) but not to worry, the Branch would sprout forth "leaves", ( church ) and that those leaves would be a grafting addition to the branch; and then afterward, that fig tree ( Israel ) would rebud, or blossom, and then the second crop of good figs would be harvested. (Israel’s salvation )

      Israel is the natural branch of the fig tree, while the church, or Christians, are the grafted on branches.

      The Church does not replace Israel, it was simply included into the productivity or fruitfulness of the tree.

      Romans 11:21: For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee.

      This is a point of emphasis to the Gentile world, that if the nations-church does not heed the lesson of the fig tree, then likewise; the curse of death will overtake all who reject Christ.

      Paul's prayer in Romans 1:1; was that Israel might be saved and it is Gods desire that ALL be saved; Jew and Gentile alike.

      During Jesus first visitation to Jerusalem, he was questioned by the Pharisees and Sadducees, desiring that Jesus would simply show them a sign, so as to verify that Jesus was indeed the anticipated Messiah.

      Now Jesus could have given them any sign that they might have required of him, or performed some tantilizing miracle, but he chose did not do so. Why not? God does not play games, or seek to entertain men with mindboggling magical wonders. He does not need the approval or popularity of mankind. The Lord does not bend to temptation, nor to the confidence of public opinion. Ironically, Satan does entertain men with such exploits, performing seemingly miraculous things, all for the express purpose of self-gloirification and deceit.

      Matthew 16:4: A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and no sign shall be given unto it, but the sign of the prophet Jonah.

      Jesus didn't need to give the Sadducees any more signs than those already that were already foretold of his coming. They had the prophetic information of the Old Testament detailing fully his visitation. God does not repeat himself, just to hear himself be doubted by the agnostic. The problem here was not verification, it was simply unbelief.

      What was the sign of Jonah that Jesus referred to?

      Just as Jonah had spent 3 days and 3 nights within the belly of the great fish; Jesus also would spend three days and nights in the belly of the earth, rising out on the third, just as Jonah came out of the belly of the fish on the third day. Jesus was here predicting that he would arise the third day after they had destroyed the temple which he himself embodied.

      John 2:19: Destroy this temple, and in three days, I will raise it up.

      This is the only sign that Israel would get. They already had rejected numerous signs.

      Jesus used the parable of fig tree to display to the disciples, and then to whole house of Israel that although they would reject their Messiah, still he would come back unto them a second time, but only after they had learned to cry out to for him, as one mourneth for his only son.

      The old testament prophet Hosea had hit upon this very delay in Israel's restorative seasonal rebudding:

      Hosea 6:1-2; Come, and let us return unto the Lord: for He hath torn, and He will heal us; He hath smitten. and He will bind us up.

      After two days will He revive us: in the third day He will raise us ( Israel )up, and we shall live in his sight.

      The fig tree of Israel was destined to be scattered among all the nations of the world for two complete days of God's timetable, ( 1000 years/ one day ) but on the third day, Israel would be providentially returned to its land, and begin the rebirth process.

      So then, Jesus very death and resurrection served as a paradigm for the restoration, and the rebudding of the fig tree which is national Israel.

      What a tremendous SIGN that is! What could God have done any better to prove his love and genuine desire for Israel, and indeed the whole world?

      Have you ever thought about Satan preserving a nation unto himself with such a precise prophetic analogy? It would be preposterous to think of. Satan can't do such a thing, because he is not alpha and omega. He can only destroy nations. The miracle of Israel is the divine proof of the supremacy of the God of Israel.

      Is it any wonder then, why Satan, the Great Red Dragon will pursue Israel with an all out vengeance during the Tribulational era?

      The reemergence of the state of Israel has always been a prerequisite for the fulfillment of prophetic destiny for all nations. The nations of this world are afflicted with a demonic disease that ultimately points to the acute pecularity of the peculiar people, Israel.

      The leaves that sprouted forth from the Branch of the fig tree could have been for the healing process to be instilled in the souls of all the nations of this world. Had the church so conquered the nations in total, as did the preaching of Jonah to the Ninevites, Israel may have been spared the onslaught of Anti-Semitism.

      But alas, the church has not brought peace, but it has brought separation. The nations are all at enmity with the God of Israel, and its grafted Christians!

      Perhaps this is the basis for the nations healing in the Post Millennial Kingdom of Israel.

      Revelation 22:2: In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river of life, which bare twelve manner of Fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and "The Leaves" of the Tree were for the healing of the Nations.

      God says in Ezekiel 28:25-26, that when He has gathered the house of Israel from among all those nations to where they were scattered, that He will execute His judgements upon all those nations that despised Israel; and that they will know that the "I AM" of Israel is indeed God.

      From Isaiah 4:2 In that day shall the Branch of the Lord be beautiful and glorious, and the Fruit of the earth shall be excellant and comely for them that are escaped of Israel.

      Without question, the rebudding of national Israel 52 years ago now, is the most powerful message that God has sent to the nations-peoples in the last 20 centuries, since the first visitation of the Branch. In restoring Israel once again in their homeland, God is raising up an ensign, or banner, which the nations of the world cannot ignore.

      To the nations, God says from Ezekiel 36:23:

      And I will sanctify My great name, which was profaned among all the heathen, which ye have profaned in the midst of them, and the heathen shall know that I AM the Lord, when I shall be sanctified in you ( Israel ) before their ( nations ) eyes.

      God is about to undertake a great shaking in the land of Israel. The Fig Tree has been planted, but just as in the vision of the "Valley of Dry Bones", Israel still is not spiritually alive; but that blossoming will take place upon the return visit of Jesus Christ to ISRAEL.

      The second crop of good figs is already budding on the Branch. The Satanic hosts which are staged to pursue Israel will lead the nations to their fates; when God shakes the Fig Tree.

      Revelation 6:13: And the stars of Heaven fell unto the earth, even as a “fig tree” casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.

      The parable of the fig tree carries with it a like promise as the one which was made to Simeon. As Simeon was promised to not see death until he had seen the Messiah, also the rebudded generation of regathered Israel will see all things fulfilled before it passes. ( Matt 24:34 )

      "Now learn a parable of the fig tree; when his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:"

      The Fig Tree is planted once again in its natural homeland, it is ALIVE, and the blossoms are budding forth, and it signifies that the Branch shall returneth soon!

Darrell G. Young

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