What is the relationship between your priorities and God’s provision? What shapes your priorities and how much are you focused on providing for you? What do you treasure most?

Chapter 12:13-34

13 Then someone called from the crowd, “Teacher, please tell my brother to divide our father’s estate with me.” 14 Jesus replied, “Friend, who made me a judge over you to decide such things as that?” 15 Then he said, “Beware! Guard against every kind of greed. Life is not measured by how much you own.” 16 Then he told them a story:

  • …”I will honor you if you help me get more stuff.”
  • Jesus says; “Don’t look to me to justify your greed / coveting.”
  • Christ’s Kingdom is not in any way concerned about earthly possessions
  • Message to the crowd: ‘This life is not about what you have’

A rich man had a fertile farm that produced fine crops. 17 He said to himself, ‘What should I do? I don’t have room for all my crops.’ 18 Then he said, ‘I know! I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I’ll have room enough to store all my wheat and other goods. 19 And I’ll sit back and say to myself, “My friend, you have enough stored away for years to come. Now take it easy! Eat, drink, and be merry!”’

  • Who made the farm produce such fine crops? Who made the soil fertile?
  • His response to abundance is self focused (control)
  • I can’t use everything I have, I will make room to have even more…
  • He keeps talking to himself… calls himself: ‘My Friend’… self-satisfied

20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get everything you worked for?’ 21“Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God.”

  • He stored up stuff based on a life he had no control over (God demonstrates)
  • He wanted to have the stuff for himself ONLY…
  • God defines foolishness as preoccupation with ‘earthly wealth’
  • The opposite of that is a rich relationship with God (through Jesus Christ)

That part is directed at the crowd, the rest of this passage is for ‘Christ’s Disciples’. Christ’s Disciples defined by Scripture: By God’s grace they have surrendered their life to Christ’s Lordship and are indwelled with God’s Holy Spirit

22 Then, turning to his disciples, Jesus said, “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food to eat or enough clothes to wear. 23 For life is more than food, and your body more than clothing.

  • Those who declare themselves to be Christ’s disciples are to live by this lesson
  • Our discipleship is about learning to live a life that is not focused on STUFF
  • Our lives, Christ given redeemed lives, are to be focused on ‘Rich Relationship’
  • Disciples are not focused on playing the worlds stuff accumulation game!
  • Even basic necessities are not to a focus of worry
  • ‘Do your best, trust God for the rest’

24Look at the ravens. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for God feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than any birds! 25 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? 26 And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what’s the use of worrying over bigger things?

  • The example is to show God’s intimate care in the smallest of creatures
  • We are the apex of God’s creation! We bear HIS Image!
  • Don’t forget He is talking to His chosen Disciples: Rich Relationship=Max Value
  • The basis for that relationship is understanding God is ultimately in control
  • We have illusions of control about small things, but it has to be all or nothing
  • Biblical Theology: God consistently declares He is in control of EVERYTHING!
  • If God is in control of anything than HE is in control of everything!

27 “Look at the lilies and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. 28 And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?

  • Examples from creation (God’s character is consistent throughout creation)
  • Jesus is trying to explain how much God will care for you if surrender your life
  • The repetition is driving home the point that God is fully invested in YOU
  • He has chosen you to be His disciple, trust that God is invested in your care

29 “And don’t be concerned about what to eat and what to drink. Don’t worry about such things. 30 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers all over the world, but your Father already knows your needs. 31 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and he will give you everything you need. 32 “So don’t be afraid, little flock. For it gives your Father great happiness to give you the Kingdom.

  • Christ’s disciples will not have an ‘overriding concern’ with life’s basic needs
  • Don’t let such things bother you, God knows what you need to survive
  • Concern for survival dominates the lives of those apart from God
  • As Christ’s disciples we are to make His Kingdom our ‘Overriding Concern’
  • As we work at doing that (discipleship) God will gives us everything we need
  • We should enjoy our salvation as much as God does! Fear smothers joy
  • If Christ has given you eternity with Him you can be free from fear!

33 “Sell your possessions and give to those in need. This will store up treasure for you in heaven! And the purses of heaven never get old or develop holes. Your treasure will be safe; no thief can steal it and no moth can destroy it. 34 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.

  • Disconnect yourself from unnecessary stuff
  • Do you own stuff or does stuff own you?
  • Valuing people and relationships above things (things serve needs of people)
  • Being an agent of God’s blessings rather than a storehouse of them
  • By distributing God’s goodness we accumulate what has eternal value
  • If you have stuff, you have to worry about it.
  • If God is your treasure, no worries!
  • What you invest your time, emotion and skill in is what you truly value


Following Jesus is not about justifying your focus on stuff.

Blessings & resources are to be shared not hoarded.

A focus on accumulating earthly things is in opposition to relationship with God!

Storing up things is an expression of not trusting God to provide.

Christ will take care of His disciples who prioritize His Kingdom work.

Jesus’ disciples have nothing to fear when we put His Kingdom first.

As Christ’s disciples our focus is to be storing up what is of ‘Eternal Value’.

Your true spiritual allegiance is proven by what you use your life to store up.


Jesus says beware ‘every’ kind of greed; what kind of greed are you susceptible to?

What are a few ways you can shift your focus from earthly things to Kingdom things?

What are some ways you can tangibly express trust for God to provide in new ways?

How does worry & preoccupation with stuff hamper your relationship with God?

Christ speaks directly to His disciples about the futility of facade and how faithless fear is for those who have surrendered their lives to The Gospel. In Christ we don’t have to manage fear, we can banish fear because God is in control.

Chapter 12:1-12

1 Meanwhile, the crowds grew until thousands were milling about and stepping on each other. Jesus turned first to his disciples and warned them, “Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees—their hypocrisy.

  • This message is to disciples of Christ (first)
  • Fear of people is what makes people into hypocrites
  • Yeast infiltrates whatever it is joined to…metaphor for corrupting influence
  • The temptation is to live a life that is a facade for the approval of people

2 The time is coming when everything that is covered up will be revealed, and all that is secret will be made known to all. 3 Whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered behind closed doors will be shouted from the housetops for all to hear!

  • God is in control of exposing what we try to hide
  • The idea that we have control of what is known, or not is an illusion
  • The more you try to hide the more you have to fear…
  • Facade & Fear go together and feed each other

4 “Dear friends, don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot do any more to you after that. 5 But I’ll tell you whom to fear. Fear God, who has the power to kill you and then throw you into hell. Yes, He’s the one to fear.

  • These are Christ’s words to you in love, as friends…
  • God tells us not to fear whatever can only kill our bodies
  • What is rational to fear is the ONE who can kill Body and Soul
  • Only God controls your eternity
  • To fear about losing this life means you have not given it up (Gospel)
  • This is the only way to move from managing fear to banishing fear

Matthew 16:24-26

Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it. And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?

Can you surrender your life without trusting that God can & will give you eternal life?

6 “What is the price of five sparrows—two copper coins? Yet God does not forget a single one of them. 7 And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.

  • God is intimately involved in everything! He wants to be intimate with your soul
  • We can live without fear because values us!
  • Can you trust that God applies His ‘Omins’ to your care?
  • The only true value and identity we have emanates from God

8 “I tell you the truth, everyone who acknowledges me publicly here on earth, the Son of Man will also acknowledge in the presence of God’s angels. 9 But anyone who denies me here on earth will be denied before God’s angels.

  • God defines truth: Christ is crystal clear on this point
  • There are no such things as ‘Undercover’ Christians, just undercover fakers
  • God know where you are with Him, if you are with Him you cannot deny it
  • Giving fear place, trying to manage it, is not acknowledging Christ as your Lord
  • Valuing this physical life more that Christ’s eternal Kingdom does not end well

10 Anyone who speaks against the Son of Man can be forgiven, but anyone who blasphemes the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.

  • Misunderstanding Christ’s person & teaching is forgivable; discipleship process
  • Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit: denying that God exists and defines the universe
  • Why is it ‘The Unforgivable Sin’?

11 “And when you are brought to trial in the synagogues and before rulers and authorities, don’t worry about how to defend yourself or what to say, 12 for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what needs to be said.”

  • When faced with opposition for openly acknowledging God / Christ: Trust God!
  • If you have given your life to Christ His Spirit can & will lead you
  • He doesn’t promise to lead you to physical safety and comfort
  • Without God’s Spirit you cannot banish fear, only manage fear
  • If you have His Spirit you must learn to ‘Leverage your relationship’
  • Yield to and walk in the power God has placed in you (Holy Spirit / Salvation)
  • Spirit empowerment happens for specific needs & times (Situations)

Jesus is offering us a life of hope rather than a life of fear: if you surrender your life!

We find the fullness of what that means in our ‘Body Life’ known as Discipleship!


Beware the effects of religious hypocrisy, it will infiltrate YOUR entire life.

In His time GOD will expose what He will, YOU can’t hide anything from Him

As Christ’s surrendered follower YOU have nothing to fear except GOD!

If YOU belong to Christ YOU can entrust YOUR life to His care & purposes for it.

If YOU belong to Christ YOU are called to live openly trusting YOUR life to HIM.

YOU can be forgiven for not following Jesus properly, denying GOD is unforgivable.

GOD, by His indwelling Spirit, will lead YOU in times of trouble and opposition.


If you are not a Pharisee, why should you be wary of their hypocrisy?

Do your actions and attitudes serve to manage fear or banish fear?

How might you change your life to more fully express your awe & respect for God?

In what ways are you unable to be at peace and rest in God’s control of your life?

The use of God’s Word is a sacred responsibility for everyone, especially someone God has raised to Eldership. The leaders of God’s people must be constantly on guard for what has overtaken the Pharisees & Scribes that Jesus points out & condemns in our passage today. They have become corrupt; their position of leadership is meant to serve people, and instead they oppress and control those people using God’s Word to justify it!

There are honest mistakes, misinterpretations and misapplications of God’s Word that happen all the time as we pursue discipleship. Jesus is condemning religious leaders for abusing the power God’s Name in a willful, unrepentant manner

Leaders have a massive responsibility to handle God’s Word and to teach others how to handle it. (Context, Audience, Place in Scripture, Language @ both ends) Everyone one who is part of Jesus Christ’s body needs to always be growing in their knowledge of Scripture so they can be aware of misuse, misrepresentations and misinterpretations of God’s Word

Luke 11:43-54

43 “What sorrow awaits you Pharisees! For you love to sit in the seats of honor in the synagogues and receive respectful greetings as you walk in the marketplaces. 44 Yes, what sorrow awaits you! For you are like hidden graves in a field. People walk over them without knowing the corruption they are stepping on.”

  • ‘What Sorrow’ is the ultimate sorrow: Eternity separated from God
  • What they love (more than God) is the attention, approval & praise of people
  • This is what is known as narcissism, a self focus that is incredibly corrupting
  • It’s a preoccupation with image, & facade as well (a lifestyle of dishonesty)
  • You can’t see the rot & filth with a casual observance, but the ‘Death’ is there

45 “Teacher,” said an expert in religious law, “you have insulted us, too, in what you just said.” 46 “Yes,” said Jesus, “what sorrow also awaits you experts in religious law! For you crush people with unbearable religious demands, and you never lift a finger to ease the burden.

  • We are offended because we support the Pharisees, they have picked sides
  • Jesus says, ‘Yeah you are in the same boat with them’ (Against God)
  • The sorrow of being separated from God is born of misusing your expertise
  • Justifying oppression by ‘God’s Word’ & exempting yourself from responsibility
  • A lack of acting with compassion is a sign of religious misuse of God’s Word

47 What sorrow awaits you! For you build monuments for the prophets your own ancestors killed long ago. 48 But in fact, you stand as witnesses who agree with what your ancestors did. They killed the prophets, and you join in their crime by building the monuments!

  • You act like you honor what God has revealed thru prophets / scripture
  • The ‘Cult of The Temple’ at that time
  • Their allegiance was to the structure they controlled rather than God
  • God was a ‘Figure Head’ for how them rather than the leader
  • We also support such evil if we do not oppose the wrong practices

49 This is what God in his wisdom said about you:‘I will send prophets and apostles to them, but they will kill some and persecute the others.’

  • The rejection of God’s revelation & the manipulating of God’s Word will happen
  • Misusing God’s Word is the same as persecuting & killing His representatives

50 “As a result, this generation will be held responsible for the murder of all God’s prophets from the creation of the world— 51 from the murder of Abel to the murder of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the sanctuary. Yes, it will certainly be charged against this generation.

  • ‘This generation’ is everyone from this point forward (The revelation of Christ)
  • With what they now knew and what we know (Christ) we are accountable
  • We either honor God’s prophets / word or we are guilty of murder too

Old Testament Tie-In Time! Let’s take a look at what Jesus was referencing:

Chronicles 24:19-22

Although the Lord sent prophets to the people to bring them back to him, and though they testified against them, they would not listen. Then the Spirit of God came on Zechariah son of Jehoiada the priest. He stood before the people and said, “This is what God says: ‘Why do you disobey the Lord’s commands? You will not prosper. Because you have forsaken the Lord, he has forsaken you.’”

But they plotted against him, and by order of the king they stoned him to death in the courtyard of the Lord’s temple. 22 King Joash did not remember the kindness Zechariah’s father Jehoiada had shown him but killed his son, who said as he lay dying, “May the Lord see this and call you to account.”

  • King Joash met with a bad end…

52 “What sorrow awaits you experts in religious law! For you remove the key to knowledge from the people. You don’t enter the Kingdom yourselves, and you prevent others from entering.”

  • Their misuse of Scripture keeps them & others from eternity with God
  • To willingly do such a thing, is blasphemy of The Holy Spirit / denial of God

53 As Jesus was leaving, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees became hostile and tried to provoke him with many questions. 54 They wanted to trap him into saying something they could use against him.

  • Instead of hearing what Christ was saying they wanted to keep manipulating
  • Their study of Scripture was not to understand it but to leverage for themselves
  • The trap is using scripture to justify your desires in opposition to Christ
  • Proper use of scriptures transforms your desires to match God’s (Psalm 37:4)


A life of religious facade will corrupt and ultimately leads to the greatest sorrow.

The use of God’s Word as a pretext for oppression leads to the greatest sorrow.

Institutionalizing Scripture but not truly honoring His revelation contained in it, leads to the greatest sorrow.

We are responsible if we allow or tolerate what Christ has condemned, instead we must actively oppose it.

Expertise in Scripture that is not used for yours & others salvation leads to the greatest sorrow.

Using Scripture as a means to manipulate people & justify selfish actions is ‘Anti-Christ’.


What are some specific ways that scripture is misused in the world around you?

Why does Jesus focus so intently on the misuse of scripture by such a small group?

If you are not working against the misuse of scripture, are you supporting the misuse of scripture?

How can you intentionally keep yourself from misusing Scripture to justify selfish actions?

What goes into the way you view this world? What shapes your perspective? How do you see it? What is your point of view?

Each of us has a perspective, a worldview that we apply to EVERYTHING! As followers of Jesus Christ we claim our perspective is based on HIM. To have that be the truth we will listen to Christ’s Words and apply them with actions.

And how do we keep our ‘Eye Healthy’? ie. keep a Biblical perspective? Look at what Jesus says in Luke 11:28: “Even more blessed are all who hear the Word of God and put it into practice.”

Luke 11:29-42

29 As the crowd pressed in on Jesus, he said, “This evil generation keeps asking me to show them a miraculous sign. But the only sign I will give them is the sign of Jonah. 30 What happened to him was a sign to the people of Nineveh that God had sent him. What happens to the Son of Man will be a sign to these people that he was sent by God.

  • The sign of Jonah is being dead and coming back to life
  • It was enough for the entire city of Nineveh to repent, because God sent him
  • Christ’s resurrection will be enough for those He was sent to
  • Every generation has evil who wont believe & a chosen group who believe
  • ‘Spiritual Scarcity’ isn’t a fruit of The Spirit. (Gal 5:22-23 = Christ’s Disciples

31 “The queen of Sheba will stand up against this generation on judgment day and condemn it, for she came from a distant land to hear the wisdom of Solomon. Now someone greater than Solomon is here—but you refuse to listen.

  • To ‘Stand up against’ is to give evidence to the contrary…
  • She did what she did to taste of God’s wisdom, NOW God offers HIMSELF!

32 The people of Nineveh will also stand up against this generation on judgment day and condemn it, for they repented of their sins at the preaching of Jonah. Now someone greater than Jonah is here—but you refuse to repent.

  • This ties back to how He said the only sign will be the sign of Jonah…
  • The people of Nineveh, the whole city repented!
  • They did that because God sent a man, Now God has come Himself

33“No one lights a lamp and then hides it or puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where its light can be seen by all who enter the house. 34 “Your eye is like a lamp that provides light for your body. When your eye is healthy, your whole body is filled with light. But when it is unhealthy, your body is filled with darkness.”

  • Think of your eye as ‘The way you see things’ ie ‘Subjective Reality’
  • Your subjective reality is ruled by your theology, Biblical or Non Biblical
  • There is no 3rd theology, it is either Biblical (good) or non-Biblical (evil)
  • Healthy = Reality that is ruled by Biblical Theology (Relational Grace by Spirit)
  • Unhealthy = Reality influenced by Non-Biblical Theology (legalism / scarcity)

How do we evaluate this health? Galatians 5:22&23

But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!

35 “Make sure that the light you think you have is not actually darkness. 36 If you are filled with light, with no dark corners, then your whole life will be radiant, as though a floodlight were filling you with light.

  • Christ tells us to ‘Make Sure’ …’Be Intentional’ about evaluating your life
  • We need some objectivity / less subjectivity, that’s how we get into the corners
  • The objective is to shine God’s light, we need each other to grow into that

37 As Jesus was speaking, one of the Pharisees invited him home for a meal. So he went in and took his place at the table. 38 His host was amazed to see that he sat down to eat without first performing the hand-washing ceremony required by Jewish custom.

  • Some of what Jesus was saying was resonating with a Pharisee…
  • He expected Christ to be caught up in legalism, like he was

39 Then the Lord said to him, “You Pharisees are so careful to clean the outside of the cup and the dish, but inside you are filthy—full of greed and wickedness! 40 Fools! Didn’t God make the inside as well as the outside? 41 So clean the inside by giving gifts to the poor, and you will be clean all over.

  • Similar analogy to Christ calling Pharisees ‘Whitewashed Tombs’
  • Their focus on appearances led to the rotting of their souls
  • Doing things for others in need comes from experiencing forgiveness

42 “What sorrow awaits you Pharisees! For you are careful to tithe even the tiniest income from your herb gardens, but you ignore justice and the love of God. You should tithe, yes, but do not neglect the more important things.

  • A focus on minutia & disregard the big picture of The Gospel, does not go well
  • A focus on the more important things and growing in obedience = balance


Christ’s Resurrection is enough of a ‘Sign’ for those Christ is sent to.

The Resurrection is the gateway to a Christ Based Perspective

There are people who have humbled themselves before God and believed who had far less info than we have, they will testify against those who want more info.

Exhaustive information dosen’t creates Christ Based Perspective, Faith does!

How you look at things really matters! A Worldview born of Biblical Theology is a goal of Christian Discipleship. That is what makes your eye healthy & helpful to others.

Having a ‘Healthy Eye’ is seeing this world for what it is and seeing God for who He is. ‘The way you see things’ / perspective, effects every part of your life.

Having a healthy eye is living by faith & grace in a way that others notice: growing consistently in ‘The Fruit of The Spirit’.

You change your perspective by changing how you live: doing, not talking

We can make sure our light is not really darkness by living out honest relationships in Biblical community. It is the only way to get at ‘dark corners’.

We need help making sure…

God wants to clean our insides (soul) by having us do sacrificial things, not ‘Shows of Spirituality’. Following Christ requires sacrifice & change (Romans 12:1&2)

Perspective change happens through living & doing

Following the letter of the law rather than the Spirit is the height of foolishness. It leads to greed (not just for money) & wickedness.

Legalism is a sickness that rots your integrity

Christ calls us to live in balance: Observing God’s Word relationally not legalistically. We align our priorities with His by growing in His love and His Justice.

Application: Being intentional about growing in your Christ based perspective

Two aspects of good Biblical application:

Honest evaluation of your life.

Intentional action to change where you need to

How do you see it now? How can you change how you see it?

#1. Is Jesus’ Resurrection alone enough for you to declare Him Christ? Why or why not?

#2. What things / activities / people have had the most influence on your worldview?

#3. How does your relationship life exhibit growth in the fruit of the Spirit?

#4. How have you recently changed & what have you sacrificed as a result of your discipleship?