Warning Against Hypocrisy (Luke 12:1-12). Many in the crowd wanted to confess their faith in Him,
but refrained from doing so because they feared the Pharisees. Jesus viewed the crowd in a state of
indecision. In order to encourage them to make their faith public, He first warned them against silence
(vv. 4-7), and then He gave a promise to encourage them (vv. 8-12).
Warning About Greed and Trust in Wealth (Luke 12:13-34). Christ refused to get involved in a
dispute over the dividing of a family inheritance. He discerned the covetousness of the man’s heart who
requested him to get involved. Covetousness arises from a false philosophy of life that says the greatest
good in life is to acquire material possessions. Such a philosophy characterized the Pharisees, who
interpreted prosperity as a sign of divine blessing. They said, “Whom the Lord loves He makes rich.” He
tells the Parable of the Rich Farmer, who trusts in riches to satisfy himself and to gain eternal life. Jesus
goes on to explain that one should not worry about daily needs but depend on God for their supply, not on
wealth. “But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well” is the Lord’s promise.
What a man loves, he serves. The Pharisees had become slaves to material things and Christ urges them
to become servants of God instead.
Warning Against Being Unprepared for the Son of Man’s Coming (Luke 12:35-48). Jesus tells the
Parables of the Waiting, Watching Servants and the Wise Manager to encourage watchfulness and
faithfulness. The point is “you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when
you do not expect him.” This teaching was based on the fact that the kingdom offered to Israel had been
rejected. Thus, it was to be postponed until some future time.
Warning About the Coming Division (Luke 12:49-53). Christ announces that He had come to bring
judgment. His approaching baptism (death) was itself a judgment on Satan, sin, the world, and
unbelievers. He came to divide people, and the division would arise from their attitude toward His
Person. He came to bring peace (Luke 2:14), but only those who put faith in Him would experience it.
The nation’s rejection would result in a severe turning of hearts away from one another (Malachi 4:6).
Warning Against Failing to Discern the Signs of the Times (Luke 12:54-59). The prophet Daniel had
foretold the time that Messiah would appear. The Lord held the nation responsible for that revelation.
Their ignorance of it was no excuse for their rejection. If they were able to interpret the signs of the
heavens, they should have been able to interpret His signs and know that these were truly the messianic
days. In light of the impending judgment that would fall on the nation, Christ urged them to seek
reconciliation with the Judge.