Episode 176 – Flora & Faith Pt 2: Fruit Like a Fig Tree

We’ve all read stories in the Bible that leave us wondering, “Wait! What in the world does that mean?” Jesus’s cursing the fig tree is a prime example. As one of the signature features of the landscape of the Bible, the fig tree developed deep symbolic meaning for the people of Israel. Understanding how a fig tree produces fruit clarifies exactly what’s happening when Jesus curses the fig tree. By the end of this episode, you’ll discover not only how God responds to fraudulent faith but also how fruitfulness starts.

Discussion Questions

  • What was your biggest takeaway from the teaching? 
  • Name some of the Bible stories that have felt like perennial head-scratchers to you. Or, what are some of the Bible stories that leave you wondering, “Wait! What in the world is going on here?” 
  • When you think about your present-day context, what comes to mind when you hear the phrase “fraudulent faith?” 
  • What are some of the “small acts of faithfulness” you’ve observed in the lives of others that, over time, have added up to a rich life of faith? 
  • What are some of the small acts of faithfulness you engage in? If none come to mind, try brainstorming to create a short list.  
  • How will you begin living out the truths of this teaching this week?  

For Further Study

As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases (at no extra charge to you).

Listen on Apple Podcasts
Listen on Spotify


  1. Peg Herriage September 12, 2023 at 5:17 am - Reply

    In my Bible readings, I read this “fig tree story” just days ago. And as Brad said I wondered why Jesus was so mad at the fig tree. I LOVED this explanation. It surely helps to know the “what” and “why”!! Thank you!

    • Brad Nelson October 6, 2023 at 10:41 am - Reply

      Hi Peg, talk about good timing on the Bible reading! Glad this helped to clarify things.

  2. Lainie Sloane September 12, 2023 at 5:40 am - Reply

    Thank you for this teaching! It touched my heart and brought tears to my eyes. You did a great job in helping me to understand the fig tree! I’m praying that others see this as it brings more understanding of why Jesus cursed the poor fig tree.

    • Brad Nelson October 9, 2023 at 8:25 am - Reply

      I’m so glad this resonated with you and brought some clarity Lainie.

  3. Lee Anna Brown September 12, 2023 at 8:47 am - Reply

    Your teachings and explanations have always shed SO MUCH light on what is often obscure and even confusing passages and events. I am blessed every time I watch an episode. This truly is a gift and tool for growing my faith and keeping me pressing forward. My grade-school friend, Vernon Alexander, shared years ago on FB about this organization. I was thrilled to sign up for emails – and now, am so thankful for his suggestion.

    • Brad Nelson October 6, 2023 at 10:38 am - Reply

      Lee Ann, thank you for your kind words. We’re so glad the work God is inspiring here is resonating with the work God is up to in you. What a gift!

  4. Robbie Pruitt September 12, 2023 at 7:33 pm - Reply

    Thank you!

    • Brad Nelson October 6, 2023 at 10:37 am - Reply

      Robbie! You are most welcome. Hope you’re doing well, friend.

  5. Jan September 13, 2023 at 3:29 pm - Reply

    Great teaching. I have puzzles for years why the fig tree was cursed by Jesus. Knowing that the earljy fruit is necessary to later eatable fruit answers the question. Thanks Brad

    • Brad Nelson October 6, 2023 at 10:37 am - Reply

      Me too, Jan! So glad this was helpful for you.

Leave A Comment