Public Passage: Luke 12:35-59
Right after Jesus tells His followers that they are to store up ‘treasures’ in heaven, He launches into a short story designed to encourage His followers to say faithful and watch for His return. In this story, the servants are prepared and ready when their master returns. Only instead of the servants serving the master, the master serves the servants! It is a story of the upside down kingdom in which Jesus loves and serves us. The disciples, though, were not sure who Jesus was talking to – so they ask Jesus if it was for them or for everyone else. Jesus responds with further instructions for His followers to be actively following His instructions while waiting for the fullness of the Kingdom to arrive.
“It will be good for that servant whom the master finds doing so when he returns. Truly I tell you, he will put him in charge of all his possessions.” –Jesus, Luke 12:43-44
o The last few chapters of Luke has shown Jesus answering various questions from the disciples, legal experts/Pharisee, and random folks in the crowd
o The beginning of chapter 12 starts with Jesus encouraging the disciples to stand strong and trust him.
o Then someone in the crowd ask Jesus to settle a legal dispute
o Jesus turns the question on its head and challenges the heart of greed within the questioner
o Near the end of Jesus statement about greed, he goes into a short parable…which is where we are going to pick todays message
• The parable of the serving master
o Let’s pick up the story in verse 32 as the passage is not broken up via headings
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.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. –Luke 12:32-38
o We are to be ready
* Dressed with our boots on and ready to work
* Lights are to be ready at any moment
o Servants “eagerly awaiting” their master who “withdraws” from the banquet for a moment
* The Greek can be read either way….
* I like this way as it shows the servants in a state of readiness
* It also shows that the wedding banquet is not over, which means that it can be at anytime
o Amazingly the master knocks – why?
* Because this is an inside door
* The master wants things to be done secretly
o Instead of taking the servants out, the master serves them!!!!
o This is the upside kingdom of God – where the master, Jesus, serves the slaves and servants, us.
* Goes back to vs 32 in that the Father has been “pleased to give” us the Kingdom
* Followers of Jesus who are ready – who stay faithful and endure – will be served by the Lord Almightly
• The Twelve weren’t so sure about this
o Peter asks ““Lord, are you telling this parable to us, or to everyone?” –vs 41
o I think it was because Peter and the others were hoping that they would be the one’s receiving the Kingdom
* Remember that to them the Kingdom of God was a political kingdom in which they ran the Roman’s out of Israel
o Now it seemed that Jesus was giving away their ‘inheritance’
• Jesus, in his typical way, spins things on its head and expands Peter’s question
o Jesus is talking about the current time in 1st century Israel, modern times and the Time to Come
• The faithful and wise manager
o When the master comes, he will put the servant who is doing what they were told to do in charge of more
o Yet, the one who is not working – or worse yet – the one who gets caught up in the power and greed of the position will be punished
o Vs 43 and 47 both state that the servant knows the will or instructions of the master and are doing them
o What then is the will of the master?
• Our Instructions
o Within this conversation we already see some things….
* Don’t go chasing after riches and things that will burn up in fire, but chase after God and his righteousness
* Vs 33 says we are to sacrificially help the poor
* Earlier in chapter 12 Jesus tells us to stand firm and acknowledge him before all of humanity
o Yet I think Jesus is talking about something more than just this…
* In John 15:15, St. John records Jesus as saying:
“I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.”
o What did Jesus make known to us?
* John 15:12
“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you”
o In other words, we are to do what Jesus did!!!
* We to love people like Jesus did – being moved through God’s grace, mercy and compassion to
• heal the emotional, physical and spiritual sick
• preach the message that God has come and rescued us from sin and death if only we would repent and follows Jesus
• bring freedom to those in bondage to evil – casting out demons and filling people with the Spirit of God under the guideless of Jesus
• This is not a time to be quiet or to hide
o It is a time to move forwarding!
o It is time to stand up and join with God in His Mission to draw all people to Himself
o To join God’s Mission to fight injustice and evil in all its ways
* To fight pride
* Sexual impurity
• It’s not going to be easy
“Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division” –Jesus, Luke 12:51
o There are going to be those who are going to try to stop you from following Jesus
o It may be family members who think you are crazy or nutty for passionately chasing Jesus and pour out your lives to God
o Jesus is warning us here….yet like he said in vs 5
* “Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell.”
• The time is coming
o I don’t know when Jesus is coming again
o But I do know that He is coming!!!
o And I, for one, want to be caught doing my Father’s business!!!