(LEAP YEAR) FEBRUARY 29
“Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground? But he answered and said to him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it. And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that you can cut it down.'” Luke 13:7
You fruitless fig tree, you barren professor, do you hear this and not tremble? God is come seeking fruit; will your bare profession, your knowledge of the principles of religion, satisfy the great God? Will the notions of truth in your head, your talking and disputing, your commending or censuring sermons and preachers, serve your turn? And will you thus endeavor to ward off the heart-searching God?
Know you, God is come to seek for fruit, and for good fruit from you: not the fruit of good words only — but the fruit of good works; fruit short of this God will not regard. If your conscience is awakened, look to your merciful High Priest; consider well His intercession for such a barren soul as you are;
“Lord, let it alone; Father, let this man live one year longer; O turn away from this Your anger! I will yet see what may be done; I will take other methods; I will try what corrections may do; perhaps the rod may work more upon him than My word has hitherto done; I will also stir up My servants to a more sharp and searching manner; and if these new efforts be blessed to him, all shall yet be well — Your grace magnified, and his soul saved; if not, then You shall cut him down.” Lord, is there any reason to conclude that I am this barren fig tree? O search me and see; and if so, deposit Your grace in my heart, that I may bring forth fruit to Your glory.
Devotion by Karl Heinrich von Bogatzky (1690—1774)
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