Those who should have seen and led were blind…. “the people” who would not have been expected to understand “rejoiced at all the glorious things that were done by him” (v.17).
The owner of the fig tree could find no fruit on the tree and so passed judgement on the tree. The farmer pleaded that it be given a last chance: he would feed it and nurture it one more year. How many “last chances” do we expect to be given to us? It is expected that our lives bear fruit for the Lord: the fruit of goodness and righteousness; the fruit of the Spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control (Gal.5:22) The genuineness of our faith is tested by the fruit of our lives. The Jews in the synagogue were more concerned with legalism than with love; to them it was more important to keep the rules than to show mercy and to bring freedom from Satan. They had become blind and deaf, and no matter how many more chances they were given, no matter how much they were taught, they refused to see and hear.
Let us use every opportunity given to us to examine ourselves, to open up to God and to hear him. It might be that this is the last chance the owner will give us. The farmer wants to dig in our lives and to put manure (v.8): even if the digging is painful or difficult, it is the way to LIFE.