In Our Lord’s parable the fig tree that bore little or no fruit could stand for you or me. It would, if in spite of our good families and fine educations we have contributed very little to the welfare of God’s people. Perhaps you and I are on that extra year of trial, and if we don’t do some real good this years God will do away with us.
It is unfortunate that our English language Bibles quote Jesus as saying, “If you do not repent you will all perish.” To repent mans to blame yourself for past failings, and that was not what Jesus said we had to do. The word the St. Luke used for what Jesus said was metanloia, which means “turn one’s thinking around.” As Our Lord tells us in his parable about the fig tree, he was not asking us to weep over our past failings, no, he was telling us to turn lour lives around to do better in the future.