Luke 12:32-40

Commentary Excerpt by Tom Boomershine

This series of sayings about an appropriate spirituality, attitude, and way of living in relation to the kingdom of God occurs in the midst of a long speech (Luke 12:1-59). Jesus is talking to us as disciples in the midst of a huge crowd. There is a sense of his addressing us as an in-group. The theme that runs through these loosely related sayings is the theme of readiness/being alert/making decisions in relation to the coming of the kingdom of God.

The first two episodes of this series, which begin "Do not be afraid" and "Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out," address the theme of greed. This theme was present in the earlier part of the series of sayings: "It is God's good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions, give alms, make purses for yourselves that do not wear out."

The second part, that is, the last three episodes of these sayings, address the issue of watchfulness and being alert, not being sleepy, lazy, not paying attention to what's happening in relation to the kingdom of God. The metaphors present in this section are in effect little parables. The first is: "Be like those who are waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet." It is addressed to servants. The second is about the owner of the house: "If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he wouldn't have let his house be broken into. These are all parables that end with the injunction: "You must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect."

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