Week 5 - Interruptions

Week 5 - Interruptions


The Fig Tree : Mark 11 v 12-14 ; 20-21.

12 On the following day, when they came from Bethany, he was hungry. 13 Seeing in the dis-tance a fig tree in leaf, he went to see whether perhaps he would find anything on it. When he came to it, he found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. 14 He said to it, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.” And his disciples heard it.
20 In the morning as they passed by, they saw the fig tree withered away to its roots. 21 Then Peter remembered and said to him, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree that you cursed has withered.”



I wonder why Jesus cursed the fig tree ?
How did the disciples responded to what they had seen Jesus do ?


In between these verses Jesus goes to the temple to drive out the sellers and the buyers.
In Mark’s book the fig tree is a symbolic of the judgement that is coming on the Temple and Jew-ish leaders because the system is beyond Restoration.
But instead take the encounter seriously in its own right. From perspective of the fig tree as a liv-ing part of God’s creation as we did with the Syro Phoenician Woman. Why was the fig tree fruit-less ? It was the wrong time of the year!
So the curse from a hungry Jesus was all about HIS needs, HIS agenda, HIS timescale.
Jesus’ attitude is distinctively anthropocentric – imagining the world is here only for benefit of hu-mans. Unlike the Woman where Jesus was open to have his agenda interrupted by another – here Jesus refuses the disturbance presented by a non-human other. His response to the foreign woman was met by a robust challenge. But no one to challenge him here.
Many people noted that in Spring and Summer last year the lockdown forced on us by Covid led many people to a greater appreciation of nature and of God as Creator.



How do we stop being anthropocentric: putting OUR needs, OUR agenda and OUR timescale before the non-human other ?

Have there been times in our lives and actions when a non-human other interrupted our way of thinking / acting and made us frustrated or stopped us in our tracks and to see things differ-ently…?

Song to listen to:




I wonder as you look at this Covid Interruption time where you might see the opportunistic weeds in the world, community and your own life?

Perhaps have a go at drawing the shape of those weeds and fill them with words.
Spend time quietly looking with God at what you have created.

Write a prayer of hope telling God what you see.