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Luke 12 New Life Version (NLV)

Jesus Teaches His Followers and Thousands of Other People

12 At that time thousands of people gathered together. There were so many that they walked on each other. Jesus spoke to His twelve followers first, saying, “Look out! Have nothing to do with the yeast of the proud religious law-keepers which is pretending to be something it is not. For there is nothing covered up that will not be seen. There is nothing hidden that will not be known. What you have said in the dark will be heard in the light. What you have said in a low voice in a closed room will be spoken with a loud voice from the top of houses.

“I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and then can do no more. I will tell you the one to be afraid of. Be afraid of Him Who has power to put you into hell after He has killed you. Yes, I say to you, be afraid of Him!

“Are not five small birds sold for two small pieces of money? God does not forget even one of the birds. God knows how many hairs you have on your head. Do not be afraid. You are worth more than many small birds.

“Also, I tell you, everyone who makes Me known to men, the Son of Man will make him known to the angels of God. But whoever acts as if he does not know Me and does not make Me known to men, he will not be spoken of to the angels of God.

The Sin That Cannot Be Forgiven

10 “Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven. Whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. 11 When they take you to the places of worship and to the courts and to the leaders of the country, do not be worried about what you should say or how to say it. 12 The Holy Spirit will tell you what you should say at that time.”

13 One of the people said to Jesus, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the riches that our father left us.” 14 Jesus said to him, “Friend, who has told Me to say who should get what?” 15 Then Jesus said to them all, “Watch yourselves! Keep from wanting all kinds of things you should not have. A man’s life is not made up of things, even if he has many riches.”

The Picture-Story of the Rich Fool

16 Then He told them a picture-story, saying, “The fields of a rich man gave much grain. 17 The rich man thought to himself, ‘What will I do? I have no place to put the grain.’ 18 Then he said, ‘I know what I will do. I will take down my grain building and I will build a bigger one. I will put all my grain and other things I own into it. 19 And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many good things put away in your building. It will be all you need for many years to come. Now rest and eat and drink and have lots of fun.”’ 20 But God said to him, ‘You fool! Tonight your soul will be taken from you. Then who will have all the things you have put away?’ 21 It is the same with a man who puts away riches for himself and does not have the riches of God.”

Jesus Teaches about the Cares of This Life

22 Jesus said to His followers, “Because of this, I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you are going to eat. Do not worry about your body, what you are going to wear. 23 Life is worth more than food. The body is worth more than clothes. 24 Look at the birds. They do not plant seeds. They do not gather grain. They have no grain buildings for keeping grain. Yet God feeds them. Are you not worth more than the birds?

25 “Which of you can make yourself a little taller by worrying? 26 If you cannot do that which is so little, why do you worry about other things? 27 Think how the flowers grow. They do not work or make cloth. Yet, I tell you, that King Solomon in all his greatness was not dressed as well as one of these flowers. 28 God puts these clothes on the grass of the field. The grass is in the field today and put into the fire tomorrow. How much more would He want to give you clothing? You have so little faith! 29 Do not give so much thought to what you will eat or drink. Do not be worried about it. 30 For all the nations of the world go after these things. Your Father knows you need these things. 31 Instead, go after the holy nation of God. Then all these other things will be given to you. 32 Do not be afraid, little flock. Your Father wants to give you the holy nation of God. 33 Sell what you have and give the money to poor people. Have money-bags for yourselves that will never wear out. These money-bags are riches in heaven that will always be there. No robber can take them and no bugs can eat them there. 34 Your heart will be wherever your riches are.

Jesus Says to Watch and Be Ready for His Second Coming Be Ready for His Second Coming

35 “Be ready and dressed. Have your lights burning. 36 Be like men who are waiting for their owner to come home from a wedding supper. When he comes and knocks on the door, they will open it for him at once. 37 Those servants are happy when their owner finds them watching when he comes. For sure, I tell you, he will be dressed and ready to care for them. He will have them seated at the table. 38 The owner might come late at night or early in the morning. Those servants are happy if their owner finds them watching whenever he comes. 39 But understand this, that if the owner of a house had known when the robber was coming, he would have been watching. He would not have allowed his house to be broken into. 40 You must be ready also. The Son of Man is coming at a time when you do not think He will come.”

Faithful Servants and Servants Who Are Not Faithful

41 Peter said, “Lord, are You telling this picture-story to us or to all the people?” 42 The Lord said, “Who is the faithful and wise servant his owner made boss over the others? He is the one who is to have food ready at the right time. 43 That servant is happy who is doing his work when the owner comes. 44 For sure, I tell you, he will make him boss over all he has.

45 “But what if that servant says to himself, ‘The owner will not be coming soon,’ and then beats the other servants and eats and drinks and gets drunk? 46 The owner of that servant will come on a day and at an hour when he is not looking for him. He will cut him in pieces and will put him with those who do not believe.

47 “The servant who knew what the owner wanted done, but did not get ready for him, or did not do what he wanted done, will be beaten many times. 48 But the servant who did not know what his owner wanted done, but did things that would be reason to be beaten, will be beaten only a few times. The man who receives much will have to give much. If much is given to a man to take care of, men will expect to get more from him.

Men Are Divided When They Follow Christ

49 “I have come to bring fire down to the earth. I wish it were already started! 50 I have a baptism to go through. How troubled I am until it is over! 51 Do you think I came to bring peace on the earth? I tell you, no! I came to divide. 52 From now on there will be five in one house divided. Three will be against two and two will be against three. 53 The father will be against the son. The son will be against the father. The mother will be against the daughter. The daughter will be against the mother. The mother-in-law will be against the daughter-in-law. The daughter-in-law will be against the mother-in-law.”

54 Then Jesus also said to the people, “When you see a cloud coming in the west, you say at once, ‘It is going to rain.’ And it does. 55 When you see the wind blow from the south, you say, ‘It will be a hot day.’ And it is. 56 You who pretend to be someone you are not, you know all about the sky and the earth. But why do you not know what is happening these days? 57 Why do you not know for yourselves what is right? 58 When a person says you are wrong and takes you to court, try to make it right with him as you go, or he will take you to the head of the court. Then he will take you to the police and you will be put in prison. 59 I tell you, you will not be let out of prison until you have paid the last piece of money of the fine.”

New Life Version (NLV)

Copyright © 1969, 2003 by Barbour Publishing, Inc.

Luke 12 New International Version (NIV)

Warnings and Encouragements

12 Meanwhile, when a crowd of many thousands had gathered, so that they were trampling on one another, Jesus began to speak first to his disciples, saying: “Be[a] on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. What you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight, and what you have whispered in the ear in the inner rooms will be proclaimed from the roofs.

“I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him. Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

“I tell you, whoever publicly acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God. But whoever disowns me before others will be disowned before the angels of God. 10 And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.

11 “When you are brought before synagogues, rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend yourselves or what you will say, 12 for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.”

The Parable of the Rich Fool

13 Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”

14 Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?” 15 Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.”

16 And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. 17 He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’

18 “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain. 19 And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.”’

20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’

21 “This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.”

Do Not Worry

22 Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. 24 Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! 25 Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life[b]? 26 Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?

27 “Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 28 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! 29 And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. 30 For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.

32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Watchfulness

35 “Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, 36 like servants waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him. 37 It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. Truly I tell you, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them. 38 It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the middle of the night or toward daybreak. 39 But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. 40 You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.”

41 Peter asked, “Lord, are you telling this parable to us, or to everyone?”

42 The Lord answered, “Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom the master puts in charge of his servants to give them their food allowance at the proper time? 43 It will be good for that servant whom the master finds doing so when he returns. 44 Truly I tell you, he will put him in charge of all his possessions. 45 But suppose the servant says to himself, ‘My master is taking a long time in coming,’ and he then begins to beat the other servants, both men and women, and to eat and drink and get drunk. 46 The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the unbelievers.

47 “The servant who knows the master’s will and does not get ready or does not do what the master wants will be beaten with many blows. 48 But the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows. From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.

Not Peace but Division

49 “I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! 50 But I have a baptism to undergo, and what constraint I am under until it is completed! 51 Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division. 52 From now on there will be five in one family divided against each other, three against two and two against three. 53 They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”

Interpreting the Times

54 He said to the crowd: “When you see a cloud rising in the west, immediately you say, ‘It’s going to rain,’ and it does. 55 And when the south wind blows, you say, ‘It’s going to be hot,’ and it is. 56 Hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of the earth and the sky. How is it that you don’t know how to interpret this present time?

57 “Why don’t you judge for yourselves what is right? 58 As you are going with your adversary to the magistrate, try hard to be reconciled on the way, or your adversary may drag you off to the judge, and the judge turn you over to the officer, and the officer throw you into prison. 59 I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.”

Footnotes:

  1. Luke 12:1 Or speak to his disciples, saying: “First of all, be
  2. Luke 12:25 Or single cubit to your height
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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