Mark 11: During Christ’s last week, often called the Passion Week, we see His only miracle of destruction in the cursing of the fig tree, his second cleansing of the Temple (did they not get it the first time He did this?); the true heart of the religious leaders, the fickle heart of the populace. What are to learn from this action-packed chapter? With its pretense of leaves and lack of fruit, the fig tree is a picture of the fruitlessness of the religious leaders, the people, and Israel’s nation. Is this a picture of our hearts as well? The Temple’s cleansing shows us that God often has to come and cleanse our hearts because, as Jeremiah said, it is desperately wicked.
The attitudes are most noticeable. We read that the religious leaders were fearful of Jesus (vs18 and 32), and we recall that they seemed to have conveniently, like Thomas Jefferson, cut out the commandment they didn’t like: “thou shalt not kill.” And then there are the people with their fickle hearts. Is our heart fickle too? In this chapter, they sit amazed in the Temple listening to Jesus, but they will be crying for his crucifixion in less than a week. Truly our attitudes scream about our hearts.
If Jesus were to come to our churches today, what would he see? Would he see religious leaders much like the ones in His time? Would he see the parishioners with fickle hearts? May this chapter cause us to reflect and to seek His cleansing.