Today’s Reading: Luke 21:10-19
10 Then he said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; 11 there will be great earthquakes, and in various places famines and pestilences; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven. 12 But before all this they will lay their hands on you and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues and prisons, and you will be brought before kings and governors for my name’s sake. 13 This will be a time for you to bear testimony. 14 Settle it therefore in your minds, not to meditate beforehand how to answer; 15 for I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which none of your adversaries will be able to withstand or contradict. 16 You will be delivered up even by parents and brothers and kinsmen and friends, and some of you they will put to death; 17 you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. 18 But not a hair of your head will perish. 19 By your endurance you will gain your lives.
persecute you: Disciples must fearlessly identify with Jesus despite opposition (Mk 8:38; Jn 16:2-4, 33). Persecution will provide opportunities to proclaim the gospel. Luke recounts several such episodes where believers are locked up in prisons (Acts 4:3; 5:18; 8:3; 12:4; 16:23) and hauled before kings and governors (Acts 25:2326:32).
parents . . . brothers . . . kinsmen: Jesus demands heroic allegiance that may drive a wedge between family members (14:26). Whether martyred or persecuted, the faithful will “gain” their lives (21:19) by laying them down for Christ (9:24).