Today’s Lenten Readings and Reflections come from Luke 11-13.
Jesus didn’t get along well with the Pharisees throughout his ministry. Jesus has some rough words for them in Luke 11:37-54. The first accusation he has against them is that they clean the outside of the cup, but the inside remains full of wickedness. Jesus continues in the first part of ch.12 to talk about watching out for the “leaven” of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. As we go through the season of Lent we must evaluate our own lives. Are we mainly trying to keep the outside clean, or is there some cleaning that God wants to do on the inside as well?
Jesus talks a lot about being ready for the “time” at the end of chapter 12. Reflect on some of his key statements in this chapter: “Everyone to whom mush was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand more”…”Do you think that I have come to give peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division”. What does Jesus mean by these two statements? We each have been given much, what does that mean for how we live? How does Jesus bring division?
There is a lot going on in ch.13, but a lot of it focuses on Jesus’ Kingdom work, what it looks like, and how to be a part of it. First he heals on the Sabath; then he explains that the Kingdom of Go di like a mustard seed that grows; then he talks about the way of entering it comes through entering the narrow door. The chapter concludes with Jesus weeping over Jerusalem. Why is Jesus weeping over Jerusalem (keep in mind everything else that Jesus has already said in chapter 13)?