86 The Lord’s coming requires constant readiness.

Numbers 15:26–30; Luke 12:35–59

What does it mean to be “dressed and ready” (Luke 12:35–38)?

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Besides the Lord’s physical return in clouds of glory, we might experience a visitation from our Master in a different way. What are some of the ways this might happen (Luke 12:35–38)?

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When has God come unexpectedly knocking on your door (Luke 12:35–38)? In what ways were you ready or caught asleep?

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Jesus says we can’t know when the Last Day will be, so why do some Christians strive to figure it out (Luke 12:35–38)? How helpful might it be to say, “I don’t know, but it could be today”?

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What is the guaranteed result of not being ready (Luke 12:39–40)?

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Why might Peter have thought Jesus’ advice was only for the twelve disciples and not for others (Luke 12:41)?

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Why do some people work well without supervision and others do not (Luke 12:42–44)?

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Are you a worker who wants specific details on what to do and when, or do you want goals and guidelines that leave you the responsibility of working out the details (Luke 12:42–44)? How is God working in your life to make either way successful?

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You may have heard, “When the cat’s away, the mice will play.” Why do people sometimes think it’s okay to do what they want instead of what God wants (Luke 12:45–46)?

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Which should be our greater concern: effort or results (Luke 12:47–48)? Why?

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The announcement of Jesus’ coming was for “peace on Earth, goodwill toward men.” Why does Jesus contradict that statement by saying he came to bring division (Luke 12:49–53)?

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Why could the Jews interpret some obvious signs but not others (Luke 12:54–57)?

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When is the best time to settle a dispute (Luke 12:58–59)?

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If we’re honest enough to admit we have a dispute with God, how is that disagreement best settled Luke 12:58–59)?

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Be dressed and ready for action,” Jesus said. “Have your lamps burning. Be like servants waiting for their master’s return from a wedding feast, so whenever he comes and knocks, they immediately open the door. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds watching for his arrival. I am telling you, the master will dress to serve, ask them to dinner, and be their server. Whenever the master comes, perhaps in the middle of the night or at dawn, blessed are those servants who are ready.

Eyewitness

Luke 12:35–38 “Be dressed and ready for action,” Jesus said. “Have your lamps burning. Be like servants waiting for their master’s return from a wedding feast, so whenever he comes and knocks, they immediately open the door. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds watching for his arrival. I am telling you, the master will dress to serve, ask them to dinner, and be their server. “Whenever the master comes, perhaps in the middle of the night or at dawn, blessed are those servants who are ready.
King James

Luke 12:35–38 Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning; And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately. Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them. And if he shall come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants.

“Certainly, if a homeowner knew when a thief was coming, he would be ready and would not allow him to break in. Likewise, you must always be ready, or the Son of Man will come at an unexpected time.”

Eyewitness

Luke 12:39–40 “Certainly, if a homeowner knew when a thief was coming, he would be ready and would not allow him to break in. Likewise, you must always be ready, or the Son of Man will come at an unexpected time.”
King James

Luke 12:39–40 And this know, that if the goodman of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not have suffered his house to be broken through. Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not.

Peter said, “Sir, are you giving this illustration only for us or for everyone?”

Eyewitness

Luke 12:41 Peter said, “Sir, are you giving this illustration only for us or for everyone?”
King James

Luke 12:41 Then Peter said unto him, Lord, speakest thou this parable unto us, or even to all?

“I am talking to all the faithful and wise servants whom the master puts in charge of caring for his possessions and serving food at mealtime. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds at work when he comes. I guarantee, he will put them in charge of everything he owns.

Eyewitness

Luke 12:42–44 “I am talking to all the faithful and wise servants whom the master puts in charge of caring for his possessions and serving food at mealtime. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds at work when he comes. I guarantee, he will put them in charge of everything he owns.
King James

Luke 12:42–44 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath.

“But if a servant thinks, My master will not be back for a while, so he abuses other servants, spends his time partying, and pursues personal pleasures, his master will return unexpectedly and cut him off. He will put the servant with those who cannot be trusted.

Eyewitness

Luke 12:45–46 “But if a servant thinks, My master will not be back for a while, so he abuses other servants, spends his time partying, and pursues personal pleasures, his master will return unexpectedly and cut him off. He will put the servant with those who cannot be trusted.
King James

Luke 12:45–46 But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken; The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers.

“The servant who knows what his master wants but fails to prepare and do the work will be severely punished, but the one who does wrong out of ignorance will receive a lighter sentence. Much is required of those who are given much responsibility, and more is required of those who are given more.

Eyewitness

Numbers 15:26–30 Since their wrongdoing was not intentional, all the Israelites and foreigners among them will be forgiven. When people weren’t aware that what they did was wrong, they must bring a yearling female goat for a sin offering. The priest will make atonement before the Lord for their sins of ignorance, and they shall be forgiven. This law applies to everyone, both Israelites and foreigners among them. But Israelites and foreigners who willfully do wrong have made themselves enemies of God and must be excluded from his people.
Luke 12:47–48 “The servant who knows what his master wants but fails to prepare and do the work will be severely punished, but the one who does wrong out of ignorance will receive a lighter sentence. Much is required of those who are given much responsibility, and more is required of those who are given more.
King James

Numbers 15:26–30 And all the congregation of the Israelites shall be forgiven and the stranger who lives temporarily among them, because all the people were involved in the error. And if any person sins unknowingly or unintentionally, he shall offer a female goat a year old for a sin offering. And the priest shall make atonement before the Lord for the person who commits an error when he sins unknowingly or unintentionally, to make atonement for him; and he shall be forgiven. You shall have one law for him who sins unknowingly or unintentionally, whether he is native born among the Israelites or a stranger who is sojourning among them. But the person who does anything wrong willfully and openly, whether he is native-born or a stranger, that one reproaches, reviles, and blasphemes the Lord, and that person shall be cut off from among his people that the atonement made for them may not include him.
Luke 12:47–48 And that servant, which knew his lord’s will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.

“I have come to set the world on fire, and I wish it were already burning. But first I have a baptism of suffering to endure, and I am pressed to see it completed. Do you think I’ve come to bring peace to the world? No, I bring division. From now on, five in a household will be divided concerning me, three against two and two against three. A father will oppose his son, and the son, his father. A mother will oppose her daughter, and the daughter, her mother. A mother-in-law will oppose her daughter-in-law, and the daughter-in-law, her mother-in-law.”

Eyewitness

Luke 12:49–53 “I have come to set the world on fire, and I wish it were already burning. But first I have a baptism of suffering to endure, and I am pressed to see it completed. Do you think I’ve come to bring peace to the world? No, I bring division. From now on, five in a household will be divided concerning me, three against two and two against three. A father will oppose his son, and the son, his father. A mother will oppose her daughter, and the daughter, her mother. A mother-in-law will oppose her daughter-in-law, and the daughter-in-law, her mother-in-law.”
King James

Luke 12:49–53 I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled? But I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished! Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

Jesus said to the crowd, “When you see a cloud rise in the west, you say, ‘It is going to rain,’ and it does. When the wind blows from the south, you say, ‘It is going to be a hot day,’ and it is. Hypocrites! You can read the signs of the earth and sky to determine what the weather will be. How can you not see what is happening now? Why can’t you decide for yourselves what is right?

Eyewitness

Luke 12:54–57 Jesus said to the crowd, “When you see a cloud rise in the west, you say, ‘It is going to rain,’ and it does. When the wind blows from the south, you say, ‘It is going to be a hot day,’ and it is. Hypocrites! You can read the signs of the earth and sky to determine what the weather will be. How can you not see what is happening now? Why can’t you decide for yourselves what is right?
King James

Luke 12:54–57 And he said also to the people, When ye see a cloud rise out of the west, straightway ye say, There cometh a shower; and so it is. And when ye see the south wind blow, ye say, There will be heat; and it cometh to pass. Ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky and of the earth; but how is it that ye do not discern this time? Yea, and why even of yourselves judge ye not what is right?

“Suppose someone brings an accusation against you. You should seek to settle the dispute before going to court. Otherwise, you may find yourself before a judge, who will have an officer put you in prison. If that happens, you will not be free until you have paid all that is due.”

Eyewitness

Luke 12:58–59 “Suppose someone brings an accusation against you. You should seek to settle the dispute before going to court. Otherwise, you may find yourself before a judge, who will have an officer put you in prison. If that happens, you will not be free until you have paid all that is due.”
King James

Luke 12:58–59 When thou goest with thine adversary to the magistrate, as thou art in the way, give diligence that thou mayest be delivered from him; lest he hale thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and the officer cast thee into prison. I tell thee, thou shalt not depart thence, till thou hast paid the very last mite.