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The Cursing of the Fig Tree (Decani) Icon - F394

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On the day after Palm Sunday (Holy Monday), the Lord Jesus cursed a fig tree. This tree appeared hardy and covered with leaves, but it was fruitless. At this the Lord said, "May fruit no longer come from you forever!" The tree immediately withered. The cursing of the fig tree was a warning to the religious Jews that they were outwardly religious, but bore no spiritual fruit.

Immediately after this event the Lord told his parable of the tenant farmers of the vineyard, who killed the servants and finally the son of the land owner. By this he foreshadowed his death, and again warned the Jews to turn from their ways and come to true repentance.

Both of these events are recorded in Matthew 21:18-43, which is read at Matins on Holy Monday in the Orthodox Church. This icon fresco is from the Deçani monastery in Kosovo-Serbia.


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