Nothing but Leaves
Charles H. Spurgeon
He found nothing but leaves (Mark 11:13).
Most of the miracles of Moses were grand displays of divine justice. What were the first ten wonders but ten plagues? The same may be said of the prophets, especially of Elijah and Elisha. Was it not significant both of the character and mission of Elias when he called fire from heaven upon the captains of fifties; nor was he upon whom his mantle descended less terrible when the she-bears avenged him upon the mockers. It remained for our incarnate Lord to reveal the heart of God. The Only Begotten was full of grace and truth, and in His miracles preeminently God is set forth to us as love. With the exception of the miracle before us, and perhaps, a part of another, all the miracles of Jesus were entirely benevolent in their character; indeed this one is no exception in reality, but only in appearance. The raising of the dead, the feeding of the multitude, the stilling of the tempest, the healing of diseases-what were all these but displays of the lovingkindness of God? What was this to teach us but that Jesus Christ came forth from His Father on an errand of pure grace?
Thine hands, dear Jesus, were not arm'd
With an avenging rod,
No hard commission to perform
The vengeance of a God.
But all was mercy, all was mild,
And wrath forsook the throne,
When Christ on his kind errand came
And brought salvation down.
Let us rejoice that God commends His love toward us, because in "due time Christ died for the ungodly."
Yet, as if to show that Jesus the Savior is also Jesus the Judge, one gleam of justice must dart forth. Where shall mercy direct its fall? See, my friends, it glances not upon a person, but lights upon an unconscious, unsuffering thing-a tree. The curse, if we may call it a curse at all, did not fall on human or beast, or even the smallest insect; its bolt falls harmlessly upon a fig tree by the wayside. It bore upon itself the signs of barrenness, and pe ...
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