#Hangry – When you are so hungry that your lack of food causes you to become angry, frustrated or both.
Very seldom do I EVER miss a meal! But, when I do, don’t mess with me. I tend to be short-tempered and crabby. Research shows that our brains, specifically the parts of our brain the control emotions and anger, function better on a full belly.
This may explain Jesus’ bad mood while he was out walking with his disciples.
Mark 11:11-14 Jesus entered Jerusalem and went into the temple courts. He looked around at everything, but since it was already late, he went out to Bethany with the Twelve. The next day as they were leaving Bethany, Jesus was hungry. Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to find out if it had any fruit. When he reached it, he found nothing but leaves, because it was not the season for figs. Then he said to the tree, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.” And his disciples heard him say it.
Why is this in the bible? Is it to show that Jesus was really human and dealt with the same emotions and physical limitations of our own bodies? Is this passage merely meant to remind us that breakfast is the most important meal of the day? All good messages, but maybe not the primary message to take away from this passage.
Here’s what happens next. Jesus, already hangry, continues to the temple with an empty belly but full of attitude. He walks into the temple AND …
Mark 11:15-18 On reaching Jerusalem, Jesus entered the temple courts and began driving out those who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves, 16 and would not allow anyone to carry merchandise through the temple courts. 17 And as he taught them, he said, “Is it not written: ‘My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations’? But you have made it ‘a den of robbers.’” 18 The chief priests and the teachers of the law heard this and began looking for a way to kill him, for they feared him, because the whole crowd was amazed at his teaching. When evening came, Jesus and his disciples went out of the city.
Just a bagel and a cup of coffee and maybe Jesus would have had more patience with what he witnessed in the temple. But maybe not. I have no doubt Jesus was hungry for fruit that morning. But I believe the fruit he was hungry for was more than just a few figs!
The night before He wanders into the temple and starts to ponder what will happen here the next morning. This is God’s house. This is a place of worship. And tomorrow there will be people selling doves and lambs so people can sacrifice them in order to receive forgiveness for their sins. The money changers and the merchants are actually making money off someone’s sense of guilt and desire for God’s forgiveness! And this is all happening under the watchful eye of the religious leaders; God’s chosen people.
I imagine Jesus going to bed that night getting more and more angry just painting that mental picture in his mind. God’s people are suppose to bear fruit! Fruit is fresh. It nourishes. It gives life! God’s people are not suppose to take advantage of people. God’s people are not meant to capitalize on someone’s guilt and shame but instead offer grace and mercy.
And then our sanitized view of Jesus is challenged when we picture Jesus flipping tables and throwing merchants out of the temple. This is not the picture of Jesus calling children to him to be blessed. This is not the Jesus that fed 1000’s with a few fish and a few loaves of bread. This is madder than hell Jesus! But Jesus was hungry! Hungry for God’s people to bear fruit.
Big Idea Part 1 – Jesus expects his follower to bear fruit! All the time and in every situation and especially in God’s house.
I don’t know about you but for me this is a difficult concept practice. Because sometimes the fruit I bear is rotten. Fruit tainted with anger, impatience, judgement, and prejudice. I judge people by they way they look. I choose to degrade someone so I feel better about myself. I would rather get angry than be patient. Please tell me I am not the only one!
But there is good news! He could have put to death all those who tarnished God’s name, but instead … he took out his anger on a plant.
Mark 11:20-25 In the morning, as they went along, they saw the fig tree withered from the roots. Peter remembered and said to Jesus, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree you cursed has withered!” “Have faith in God,” Jesus answered. “Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”
Big Idea Part 1 & 2 – Jesus expects his follower to bear fruit! All the time and in every situation and especially in God’s house. And this is only possible with God’s help!
Yes, Jesus expects people who follow him to bear fruit knowing all to well that without God’s help this is impossible. So have faith! Pray to God and ask for what you need.
- More patience for my family
- More acceptance for those who are different than me
- More love for my neighbor
May we never experience a hangry Jesus! With God’s help, may his followers provide Jesus with the fruit He loves!