32 replies

  1. The kjv gives the correct rendering which is not the word “immediately” but “presently”.

    Thus the “contradiction” dissappears.

    • How on earth does that solve the problem? “Presently” means that it happened as they were standing there. The contradiction remains.

      • “presently meaning “now” is most often used with the present tense (The professor is presently on sabbatical leave) and presently meaning “soon” often with the future tense (The supervisor will be back presently).”

        No contradiction as it happened soon after they left the scene. But they first saw it the next morning.

        You need to brush up on your english obviously, and your logic too.

      • Lol, you need to brush up on your logic dummy. If the tree “now” withered away while they were still there, the contradiction remains. It’s amazing how you want to add to the text that they saw it the next morning when Matthew doesn’t say that. Once again, sola scriptura crosstians add to their text in a dishonest attempt to save it from itself. 😂

  2. @ Erasmus and QB

    Well, QB I’ll use ola scripture, the word used in the verse for “presently” means instantly:

    παραχρῆμα (parachrēma)
    Strong’s Greek 3916: Instantly, immediately, on the spot. From para and chrema; at the thing itself, i.e. Instantly.

    So that explanation doesn’t work.

  3. It wasn’t immediately visible and they did not stop to wait. They first saw it the next morning as Mark says. There is no contradiction.

    • You’re making things up. Matthew said nothing about the next day. Stop lying.

      • @ QB

        Let’s read both tales:


        12The next day, when they had left Bethany, Jesus was hungry. 13Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, He went to see if there was any fruit on it. But when He reached it, He found nothing on it except leaves, since it was not the season for figs. 14Then He said to the tree, “May no one ever eat of your fruit again.” And His disciples heard this statement.

        (They then drive out people from the Temple an in the evening left the city)

        20As they were walking back in the morning, they saw the fig tree withered from its roots. 21Peter remembered it and said, “Look, Rabbi! The fig tree You cursed has withered.”

        22“Have faith in God,” Jesus said to them. 23“Truly I tell you that if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and has no doubt in his heart but believes that it will happen, it will be done for him. 24Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

        25And when you stand to pray, if you hold anything against another, forgive it, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your trespasses as well.”f


        In the morning, as Jesus was returning to the city, He was hungry. 19Seeing a fig tree by the road, He went up to it but found nothing on it except leaves. “May you never bear fruit again!” He said. And immediately the tree withered.

        20When the disciples saw this, they marveled and asked, “How did the fig tree wither so quickly?”

        21“Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “if you have faith and do not doubt, not only will you do what was done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen. 22If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask in prayer.”

        (Then they go to the courts and drive people out)

        Notice “Matt” has Peter even comment on the speed of the withering, One clearly has a whole event go down before the withering while another says it happened instantly and then the event happened. it’s a contradiction.

      • Yep, there is a clear contradiction, but liars like Ignoramus will say it’s not and try to keep a straight face. It’s like the Twilight Zone.

  4. ” “How did the fig tree wither so quickly?” they asked.”

    “So quickly” is not immediately.

    The question makes no sense if the fig tree withered immediately before their eyes.

    Matthew just chooses not to fill in the intervening events. That is the writers freedom. He just moves in the narrative from the time of cursing to the time of seeing the effect of the curse.

    Also Phillipians 2 v 23 disproves your assertion of contradiction:

    Philippians 2:23:

    Him therefore I hope to send presently, so soon as I shall see how it will go with me.

    Looks like you need to go back to the drawing board.

  5. @ Erasmus

    Again word used in Greek:

    παραχρῆμα (parachrēma)
    Strong’s Greek 3916: Instantly, immediately, on the spot. From para and chrema; at the thing itself, i.e. Instantly.

    So there was no delay, Next it is not “writer’s freedom” or “not filling in the intervening events” he DOES fill in the events they are in a different order than “Mark’s” which is where the contradiction is at I’ll list them for you:

    Jesus (as) sees the tree, curses it, they then drive people out of the Temple, go home, come back the next morning they see the tree is withered, Peter comments

    Jesus (as) sees the tree, curses it, the tree withers instantly, Peter comments, they then drive people out of the Temple and go home

    There are 3 contradictions:

    1. When did driving people from the Temple happen? After Jesus told Peter about faith or before that?
    2. Did the tree instantly wither or was there a night delay?
    3. What was Jesus(as) and Peter’s exchange when seeing the event?

  6. Asking questions is not stating contradictions.

    To affirm a contradiction you have to make a statement, not ask a question.

    I don’t follow you.

  7. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance

    immediately, presently, straightway, soon.

    From para and chrema (in its original sense); at the thing itself, i.e. Instantly — forthwith, immediately,

    presently, straightway, soon.


    • Thayer’s Greek Lexicon
      STRONGS NT 3916: παραχρῆμα

      παραχρῆμα (properly, equivalent to παρά τό χρῆμα; cf. our on the spot), from Herodotus down; immediately, forthwith, instantly: Matthew 21:19; Luke 1:64; Luke 4:39; Luke 5:25; Luke 8:44, 47, 55; Luke 13:13; Luke 18:43; Luke 19:11; Luke 22:60; Acts 3:7; Acts 5:10; Acts 9:18 Rec.; (WH brackets παραχρῆμα); Acts 16:33. (Wis. 18:17; 2 Macc. 4:34, 38, etc.; the Sept. for פִּתְאֹם, Numbers 6:9; Numbers 12:4; Isaiah 29:5; Isaiah 30:13.

  8. The leaves did not dry out straight away. It took a couple of days for the tree to change it’s appearance even though technically speaking it was withered away immediately because the roots did not function from the time that it was cursed.

    Matthew does not report the intervening event of Jesus cleansing the temple. He just fast forwards to when the disciples notice that the leaves have dried up.

    • Again, you are making things up. Matthew said nothing of the sort. He said the leaves withered right then and there.

    • Mark said that Jesus was leaving Bethany on this way to Jerusalem when he cursed the fig tree. In verse 19, he said he left the city in the evening, and then verse 20 mentions that they passed by the fig tree and saw that it had withered.

      Matthew has Jesus enter Jerusalem in verse 10. Jesus then cleared the temple courts and then left the city to go to Bethany and spend the night (verse 17). Then, when going back to Jerusalem, he cursed the fig tree and then entered the temple courts again.

      So there is a clear contradiction. No amount of mental gymnastics will change that. Stop lying to yourself and others and just accept the truth.

  9. I don’t think the narrative has to slavishly follow the actual order of the events in real time.

    It is not a log book or a diary.

  10. For Matthew the cleansing of the temple was mentioned outside of its immediate chronological context because it was a special event.

  11. @ Atlas

    Oh, no doubt. We have to grab neutral outside Islamic sources, logic and also quote our text in full context with supplements from elsewhere. All they do is:

    “Well this one commentator say this so there”

    For example, when I debated Ken on “words” referring to God’s decrees he literally quoted NOBODY but other people attacking Islam and not one scholarly source. I, on the other hand, had to:

    1. Show word usage in other areas
    2. Usage in the chapter’s theme
    3. Background context
    4. Scholarly sources

    And even with no refutation of the above I STILL got hit with “Well I guess its a matter of interpretation”

  12. My impression is that Matthew starts his report with the cleansing of the temple and the healing of the sick to emphasize that these are the primary goals of Jesus visit. I don’t see how this violates any literary principle. Mark is careful to show that the fig tree whithers gradually just like the church of Israel in its old covenant form.

    • So both writers had their own motives. Thank you for proving that they were not inspired. They were simply writing their own versions and took liberties with the facts. As it stands, the contradiction is still there. Therefore, the Bible is not inerrant. Do you agree?

  13. No because both topical and chronological serve their own purposes. That is the advantage of having four perspectives on the same events.

    • Uh no, the authors serve their own purposes. That’s why Matthew took liberties with Mark. He changes things whenever he saw fit. And whatever the motivation was, it’s still a contradiction. You are just too dishonest to admit. A change in the chronology creates a contradiction because both chronologies cannot be true.

  14. They are not both written from the chronological perspective alone. Other criteria also play a part. Truth is multi- faceted.

    • Only in your fantasy world. In the real world, truth is truth. There are no alternative versions. Like I said, both chronologies cannot be true. Ergo, it’s a contradiction and the Bible is not inerrant.

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