12:1  Under these circumstances, after so many thousands of people had gathered together that they stepped on one another, He began saying to His disciples first of all, "Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, namely hypocrisy.

12:2  "But nothing stays covered up that will not become revealed, and hidden that will not become known.

12:3  "Accordingly, whatever you have said in the dark people will hear in the light, and what you have whispered in the inner rooms, people will proclaim upon the housetops.

12:4  "I say to you, My friends, do not fear those who kill the body and after that have no more that they can do.

12:5  "But I will warn you whom to fear: fear the One who, after He has killed, has authority to cast into hell; yes, I tell you, fear Him!

12:6  "Do we not sell five sparrows for two cents? Yet God does not forget them.

12:7  "Indeed, the very hairs of your head God has numbered. Do not fear; you have more value than many sparrows.

12:8  "And I say to you, everyone who confesses Me before men, the Son of Man will confess him also before the angels of God;

12:9  but he who denies Me before men I will deny before the angels of God.

12:10  "And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man, God will forgive him; but he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit, God will not forgive him.

12:11  "When they bring you before the synagogues and the rulers and the authorities, do not worry about how or what you will speak in your defense, or what you will say;

12:12  for the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say."

12:13  Someone in the crowd said to Him, "Teacher, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me."

12:14  But He said to him, "Man, who appointed Me a judge or arbitrator over you?"

12:15  Then He said to them, "Beware, and stay on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions."

12:16  And He told them a parable, saying, "The land of a rich man produced much.

12:17  "And he began reasoning to himself, saying, 'What shall I do, since I have no place to store my crops?'

12:18  "Then he said, 'This I will do: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods.

12:19  'And I will say to my soul, "Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years to come; take your ease, eat, drink and make yourself merry."'

12:20  "But God said to him, 'You fool! This very night God will require your soul; and now who will own what you have prepared?'

12:21  "So resembles the man who stores up treasure for himself, and has not riches toward God."

12:22  And He said to His disciples, "For this reason I say to you, do not worry about your life, as to what you will eat; nor for your body, as to what you will put on.

12:23  "For life consists of more than food, and the body more than clothing.

12:24  "Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap; they have no storeroom or barn, and yet God feeds them; how much more value you have than the birds!

12:25  "And which of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life's span?

12:26  "If then you cannot do even a very little thing, why do you worry about other matters?

12:27  "Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; but I tell you, not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these.

12:28  "But if God so clothes the grass in the field, which live today and tomorrow we throw into the furnace, how much more will He clothe you? You men of little faith!

12:29  "And do not seek what you will eat and what you will drink, and do not keep worrying.

12:30  "For all these things the nations of the world eagerly seek; but your Father knows that you need these things.

12:31  "But seek His kingdom, and these things God will add to you.

12:32  "Do not fear, little flock, for your Father has chosen gladly to give you the kingdom.

12:33  "Sell your possessions and give to charity; make yourselves money belts which do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near nor moth destroys.

12:34  "For where you have your treasure , there your heart will reside also.

12:35  "Put on readiness, and keep your lamps lit.

12:36  "Act like men who wait for their master when he returns from the wedding feast, so that they may immediately open the door to him when he comes and knocks.

12:37  "God will bless those slaves whom the master will find on the alert when he comes; truly I say to you, that he will gird himself to serve, and have them recline at the table, and will come up and wait on them.

12:38  "Whether he comes in the second watch, or even in the third, and finds them so, God will bless those slaves.

12:39  "But remain sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what hour the thief would come, he would not have allowed a thief to break into his house.

12:40  "You too, stay ready; for the Son of Man comes at an hour that you do not expect."

12:41  Peter said, "Lord, have You addressed this parable to us, or to everyone else as well?"

12:42  And the Lord said, "Who then do we find as the faithful and sensible steward, whom his master will put in charge of his servants, to give them their rations at the proper time?

12:43  "God blesses that slave whom his master finds so doing when he comes.

12:44  "Truly I say to you that he will put him in charge of all his possessions.

12:45  "But if that slave says in his heart, 'My master will take a long time in coming,' and begins to beat the slaves, both men and women, and to eat and drink and get drunk;

12:46  the master of that slave will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he does not know, and will cut him in pieces, and assign him a place with the unbelievers.

12:47  "And that slave who knew his master's will and did not get ready or act in accord with his will, will receive many lashes,

12:48  but the one who did not know it, and committed deeds worthy of a flogging, will receive but few. From everyone whom God has given much, much will He require; and to whom they entrusted much, of him they will ask all the more.

12:49  "I have come to cast fire upon the earth; and how I wish I had kindled it already !

12:50  "But I have a baptism to undergo, and how distressed I feel until I have accomplished it!

12:51  "Do you suppose that I came to grant peace on earth? I tell you, no, but rather division;

12:52  for from now on five members in one household will divide themselves, three against two and two against three.

12:53  "They will divide yourselves, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law."

12:54  And He also said to the crowds, "When you see a cloud rising in the west, immediately you say, 'A shower comes,' and so it turns out.

12:55  "And when you see a south wind blowing, you say, 'we will have a hot day,' and it turns out that way.

12:56  "You hypocrites! You know how to analyze the appearance of the earth and the sky, but why do you not analyze this present time?

12:57  "And why do you not even on your own initiative judge righteously?

12:58  "For while you go with your opponent to appear before the magistrate, on your way there make an effort to settle with him, so that he may not drag you before the judge, and the judge turn you over to the officer, and the officer throw you into prison.

12:59  "I say to you, you will not get out of there until you have paid the very last cent."