“No, I tell you: unless you repent you will all perish just as they did.”
Some people tell Jesus about some Galileans whom Pilate has had killed. Jesus asks them, “Do you think that they were worse sinners than anyone else? Unless you repent you will all perish as they did.”
Jesus tells a parable of a man who had a fig tree that refused to bear fruit. He tells the gardener to cut it down. The gardener asks him to give the tree another year in which he will fertilise it. If it doesn’t bear fruit then he will cut it down.
Part of our sinful nature is that we try to minimise our sin by comparing ourselves favourably with other people. I might sin, but at least I don’t do that terrible thing. When others suffer it must be because they did something awful to deserve it.
We can assume that just because we aren’t judged or punished now, then we can’t be too bad. The fig tree got another chance, but its fate was not guaranteed. The time of reckoning will come.
While offering us another chance, God makes it clear that there is not an infinite number of chances.
The only remedy for sin is to take it seriously and trust in the forgiveness that God offers us in Christ. We are then in a position to be able to receive His ongoing work of sanctification which makes us more like Him.
Father forgive me for judging others as more sinful than me. Help me to be honest with you about the state of my soul. Thank you that Jesus died for my sin. Amen.