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Then Jesus told them, “I tell you the truth, if you have faith and don’t doubt, you can do things like this and much more. You can even say to this mountain, ‘May you be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and it will happen. Matthew 21:21 NLT

At first, the story of Jesus' cursing the fig tree seems strange. Indeed, Matthew 21 reads like a collection of disconnected stories. But the theme of Jesus' authority runs throughout the chapter, from his command to bring the colt (v. 2-3) through the accusation against the Pharisees (v. 43-44).

In the final days of his ministry, little time remained to establish his authority. When the leading priests and elders asked, “By what authority are you doing all these things? Who gave you the right?” (v. 23) Jesus doesn't come out directly and say God sent him; however, this is made clear through his actions and teachings. Christ uses this subtle approach for a reason; he desires the listeners to draw their own conclusions and step out in faith.

Today's verse is about faith and authority. He was telling the disciples to be, without doubt, from where Jesus' power came. In this unwavering trust, they, too, would be endowed with this authority.

Almighty God, thank you for the authority we've been given. Please help us to overcome our thoughts of limitations and doubt and to place our faith wholly in you. May we use this gift to move the mountains in our world, to bring peace where there is strife, freedom where there is oppression, and show love and mercy in the face of hatred. We pray these things in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.


Pastor Tim

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