Luke 12 Expanded Bible (EXB)
Don’t Be Like the Pharisees
12 [L Meanwhile] So many thousands of people had gathered that they were ·stepping [trampling] on each other. Jesus began to speak first to his ·followers [disciples], saying, “Beware of the ·yeast [leaven] of the Pharisees, ·because they are hypocrites [L which is hypocrisy; C the evil influence of the Pharisees was like yeast that would grow and affect everything around it; Mark 8:14–21]. 2 Everything that is ·hidden [concealed; covered up] will be ·shown [revealed; uncovered; disclosed], and everything that is ·secret [hidden] will be made known. 3 What you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered ·in an inner room [or behind closed doors] will be ·shouted [proclaimed] from the housetops.
4 “I tell you, my friends, don’t be afraid of people who can kill the body but after that can do nothing more to hurt you. 5 I will ·show you [warn you about] the one to fear. Fear the one who has the ·power [authority] ·to kill you and also [L after the killing] to throw you into ·hell [L Gehenna; C a valley outside of Jerusalem where in the OT period children were sacrificed to a pagan god; later used as a burning trash heap; a metaphor for hell]. Yes, this is the one you should fear.
6 “[L Are not…?] Five sparrows are sold for only two pennies [C Greek: assaria; copper coins of very low value], ·and [yet] God does not forget any of them. 7 But ·God even knows how many hairs you have on your head [L even the hairs on your head have all been numbered]. Don’t be afraid. You are worth much more than many sparrows.
Don’t Be Ashamed of Jesus
8 “I tell you, all those who ·stand before others and say they believe in me [L confess/acknowledge me before people], ·I, the Son of Man, [L the Son of Man; C a title for the Messiah; Dan. 7:13–14] will ·say before the angels of God that they belong to me [L confess/acknowledge them before God’s angels]. 9 But all who ·stand before others and say they do not believe in me [L deny/disown me before people], I will ·say before the angels of God that they do not belong to me [L deny/disown them before God’s angels].
11 “When you are brought into the synagogues before the leaders and ·other powerful people [authorities], don’t worry about how to defend yourself or what to say. 12 [L For] At that time the Holy Spirit will teach you what you ·must [ought/need to] say [Matt. 10:19–20; Mark 13:11].”
Jesus Warns Against Selfishness
13 Someone in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide with me the ·property our father left us [family inheritance].”
14 But Jesus said to him, “[L Man,] Who ·said I should judge or decide [appointed me judge or arbiter] between you?” 15 Then Jesus said to them, “Be careful and guard against all kinds of greed. Life ·is not measured by [does not consist of] how much one owns.”
16 Then Jesus told this ·story [parable]: “There was a rich man who had some land, which grew a good crop. 17 He thought to himself, ‘What will I do? I have no place to keep all my crops.’ 18 Then he said, ‘This is what I will do: I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store all my grain and other goods. 19 Then I can say to ·myself [L my soul], “I [L Soul, you] have enough good things stored to last for many years. ·Rest [Take it easy], eat, drink, and ·enjoy life [celebrate; T be merry]!”’
20 “But God said to him, ‘Foolish man! Tonight your ·life [L soul] will be ·taken [demanded back] from you. So who will get those things you have prepared for yourself?’
21 “This is how it will be for those who store up ·things [wealth; treasure] for themselves and are not rich ·toward [or in what matters to; or in their relationship with] God.”
22 Jesus said to his ·followers [disciples], “So I tell you, don’t worry about the food you need to live, or about the clothes you need for your body. 23 [L For] Life is more than food, and the body is more than clothes. 24 ·Look at [Consider; Think of] the ·birds [L ravens]. They don’t ·plant [sow] or ·harvest [reap], they don’t have storerooms or barns, but God feeds them. And you are worth much more than birds. 25 ·You cannot [L Who of you can…?] add ·any time [or a step; L a cubit; C about eighteen inches] to your ·life [or height; C the Greek is ambiguous, but probably refers to time instead of stature] by worrying about it. 26 If you cannot ·do [change] even the little things [by worrying], then why worry about the ·big things [L the rest]? 27 ·Consider [Look; Think] how the lilies grow; they don’t ·work [toil] or ·make clothes for themselves [L spin thread]. But I tell you that even Solomon ·with his riches [L in all his glory] was not dressed as beautifully as one of these flowers. 28 God clothes [L If God clothes…?] the ·grass [wildflower] in the field, which is alive today but tomorrow is thrown into the ·fire [L furnace; oven]. So how much more will God clothe you? ·Don’t have so little faith [or You people of little faith; or How little faith you have]! 29 Don’t always think about what you will eat or what you will drink, and don’t keep worrying. 30 All the ·people [nations; Gentiles; pagans] in the world are trying to get these things, and your Father knows you need them. 31 But seek God’s kingdom, and ·all your other needs will be met as well [L these things will be given to you].
Don’t Trust in Money
32 “Don’t fear, little flock, because your Father ·wants [is glad/pleased] to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions and give ·to the poor [alms]. ·Get [Make] for yourselves ·purses [moneybags] that will not wear out, the treasure in heaven that never ·runs out [fails you], where thieves can’t ·steal [L come near] and moths can’t destroy. 34 ·Your heart will be where your treasure is [L For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also; Matt. 6:19–21].
Always Be Ready
35 “·Be dressed, ready for service [T Let your loins be girded; C tucking garments into the waist belt to allow swift movement; a metaphor for preparedness], and have your lamps ·shining [burning; lit]. 36 Be like ·servants [L people] who are waiting for their ·master [lord] to come home from a wedding party. When he comes and knocks, the servants immediately open the door for him. 37 ·They [L Those servants/slaves] will be ·blessed [happy; or rewarded] when their ·master [lord] comes home, because he sees that they were ·watching [alert; awake] for him. I tell you the truth, the master will dress himself to serve and tell the servants to ·sit at the table [recline; C the posture for a banquet or dinner party; see 7:36], and he will ·serve [wait on] them [C a radical reversal in a culture where a master would never wait on a slave]. 38 Those servants will be ·blessed [happy; or rewarded] when he comes in and finds them ·still waiting [L thus; C alert and ready], even ·if it is midnight or later [L even in the second or third watches; C between 9 PM and 3 AM (by Roman reckoning)].
39 “·Remember [Know] this: If the owner of the house knew what time a thief was coming, he would not allow the thief to ·enter [break into] his house. 40 So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man [C a title for the Messiah; Dan. 7:13–14] will come at a time when you don’t expect him!”
Who Is the Trusted Servant?
41 Peter said, “Lord, did you tell this ·story to [parable for] us or ·to [for] all people?”
42 The Lord said, “Who is the ·trusted [faithful] and ·wise [sensible] ·servant [household manager] that the ·master [lord] ·trusts [L puts in charge of the household servants] to give ·the other servants [L them] their ·food [food allowance; daily provisions] at the right time? 43 That ·servant [slave] will be ·blessed [happy; or rewarded] when the master comes and finds him doing his work. 44 I tell you the truth, the master will ·choose that servant to take care [put him in charge] of everything he owns. 45 But suppose the ·servant [slave] thinks to himself, ‘My master ·will not come back soon [is delayed in coming],’ and he begins to beat the other servants, men and women, and to eat and drink and get drunk. 46 The master [L of that servant/slave] will come [L on a day] when that servant is not ready and [L at an hour when he] is not expecting him. Then the master will cut him in pieces and ·send him away to be [assign/appoint him a place] with the ·others who don’t obey [unfaithful; unbelievers; C a metaphorical reference to Jesus, the ultimate Lord and Master, returning to judge his servants].
47 “The ·servant [slave] who knows what his master wants but is not ·ready [prepared], or who does not do what the master wants, will ·be beaten with many blows [beaten severely]! 48 But the servant who does not know what his master wants and does things that should be punished will be beaten ·with few blows [lightly; C a metaphor for judgment]. From everyone who has been given much, much will be ·demanded [required]. And from the one trusted with much, much more will be expected.
Jesus Causes Division
49 “I came to ·set [bring; cast] fire to the world, and I wish it were already ·burning [kindled]! 50 I have a baptism [C a metaphor for suffering, portrayed as an overwhelming deluge] ·to suffer through [L to be baptized with], and I feel very ·troubled [distressed] until it is over. 51 Do you think I came to give peace to the earth? No, I tell you, I came to ·divide it [bring division]. 52 [L For] From now on, a ·family [L house] with five people will be divided, 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 [Mic. 7:6].”
Understanding the Times
54 Then Jesus said to the ·people [crowds], “When you see clouds coming up in the west, [L immediately] you say, ‘It’s going to rain,’ and [L so; thus] it happens. 55 When you feel the wind begin to blow from the south [C the desert], you say, ‘It will be a hot day,’ and it happens. 56 Hypocrites! You know how to ·understand [interpret] the appearance of the earth and sky. Why don’t you ·understand [know how to interpret] ·what is happening now [this present time; C the time of the coming of the Kingdom]?
Settle Your Problems
57 “Why can’t you ·decide [judge] for yourselves what is right? 58 If your ·enemy [opponent; accuser] is taking you ·to court [before the magistrate/ruler], try hard to settle it on the way. If you don’t, your enemy might ·take [drag] you to the judge, and the judge might turn you over to the officer, and the officer might throw you into ·jail [prison]. 59 I tell you, you will not get out of there until you have paid everything you owe [C Greek: the last lepton; a copper or bronze coin of very little value].”