Hair loss? God has the count – Friday, 28th week in ordinary time – Luke 12:1-7

Hair loss? God has the count – Friday, 28th week in ordinary time – Lk 12:1-7

‘The Pharisees and scribes have now begun a hostile campaign against Jesus. They plan to cross examine Him about many things and are constantly lying in watch to catch Him in something that He might say.’ With these words chapter eleven of the Gospel of Luke comes to a close but also sets the stage of things to come in chapter twelve. This hostility will also be seen in Luke 19:47, 20:19-20 and 22:2.

But while the religious establishment draw their swords against Jesus, the crowds simply love Him. Verse one tells us that the crowds have now swelled to thousands so much so that they trample on each other. Such popularity would surely have left the Pharisees and scribes seething with anger. Ironically it is they who have swallowed the poison of hate and resentment but expect to see Jesus drop down instantly and die. Well, His hour has not yet come!

It is in this context that St Luke dedicates all fifty nine verses of chapter twelve to the consequences of the hostility towards Jesus; the disciples too will share in this opposition mounted against Jesus. However this hostility faced by the ‘little flock’ is both external as well as internal. External, caused by the Pharisees and scribes and internal caused by the selfishness of Church officials.  (Remember that Luke is also writing to his congregation of believers)

In continuing his polemic against the Pharisees or the rigorist teachers in his community, Luke attacks those whose actions do not match their words. The message of Jesus to His disciples was to ‘beware of the yeast of the Pharisees’ because their actions do not conform to their words.

It is this corrupting influence that the disciples should beware of lest they end up being contaminated by the corrupting influence of the Pharisees. Eventually, the false nature of the position of the Pharisees and scribes and the destructive character of their persons will be revealed

It is in this hostile environment that Jesus understands the need to comfort the disciples whom He now addresses as ‘friends’. This is the only place in the synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark and Luke) that the word ‘friend’ is used by Jesus and not without reason, for Jesus is fully aware that if His teachings are met with opposition then so too will that of His disciples.

But this is not merely a session in mollycoddling, for Jesus will also admonish and warn His disciples to fear hell should they rather choose to save their body when persecution comes their way. The disciples must always live with the assurance that it is God who is in control of every life and hence should not fear those who kill the body for beyond that they can do no more.

With a bit of humour, Luke argues from the lesser to the greater. If God cares for the least expensive item on the menu and counts the hairs that fall from the heads of balding men and women, how much more will God care for the disciples of Jesus.

Fr Warner D’Souza

With much help from the JBC


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One thought on “Hair loss? God has the count – Friday, 28th week in ordinary time – Luke 12:1-7”

  • The corrupting influence that Man faces in the world is lifelong, and so is the struggle against it by those who wish to stay on the narrow path.

    By himself its nay impossible for Man to overcome the temptations and the lucre of this world that is so full of leaven.

    We are called to be children of LIGHT by constantly fending ourselves from the influence of the very surroundings we live in. Isn’t it a challenge, difficult to take up and easy to give up ??



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