1. Some shared with Jesus the latest news of a horrible massacre. Pilate had attacked some Galileans in the midst of their worship in the temple and slaughtered them. The crowd was being harsh and making a very harsh judgment on these Galileans. They thought that their fate was due to their sins. They saw everything as the fulfillment of what Jesus was preaching all these days.
2. Jesus clearly refuted their thoughts. He warned them of the same fate and did not really approve their understanding of the tragedy. Jesus did not connect suffering with sin. He narrated another story to make them understand that sin alone is not the cause for the suffering. If that is the case, all of us should be constantly suffering due to our sins.
3. People must bear fruit or else they shall perish. Jesus wanted to drive home the need for repentance by sharing the parable of a man’s seeking fruit. The man represents God; the vineyard keeper represents Christ; the vineyard represents either the world or Israel.
4. The fig tree was greatly privileged. It was planted in the vineyard. It had the same soil, nourishment, rain and sun from heaven. This is true of all persons who are born in nations where the gospel is freely preached. But there is a great responsibility on the part of these privileged ones.
5. Who were the Galileans slaughtered by Pilate? Two suggestions are made about the Galileans. First they were followers of Judas of Galilee who opposed taxation imposed by the Romans (Acts 5:37). Pilate either knew that some of Judas’ followers were in the temple worshipping or mistook some group of Galileans as his followers and slaughtered them. This is much known. Pilate set out to build a new water system in Jerusalem. He need money for that and so insisted that money be taken from temple finances. Galileans were an inflammable people and therefore their protest might have caused this tragedy.
We cannot think of buying a piece of land today as the prices have gone very high and today owning a piece of land means a lot to an individual. Everywhere we see flats and apartments. Why is this demand? People want to occupy more and more space for themselves. The basic question we need to ask ourselves is ‘what is the purpose of my living’? If I do not contribute positively for the welfare of my fellow human beings we would be just occupying space like the fig tree wasting the soil. Our life here on earth is not to occupy space only for ourselves but to create space for others to live. If my whole world is ‘I, Me, Myself and Mine’ we would be wasting the space we have occupied and leave the world doing nothing
Preacher’s Outline and Sermon Bible
William Barclay’s New Daily Study Bible