Luke 12:20

ESV But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’
NIV But God said to him, 'You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?'
NASB But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your soul is demanded of you; and as for all that you have prepared, who will own it now?
CSB "But God said to him, 'You fool! This very night your life is demanded of you. And the things you have prepared--whose will they be? '
NLT But God said to him, ‘You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get everything you worked for?’
KJV But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?

What does Luke 12:20 mean?

This parable of the rich fool (Luke 12:13–21) is reminiscent of Ecclesiastes 9:1–10. The man in the parable is ready to eat, drink, and be merry. He presumably has a vague idea that he will die at some point, but he doesn't seem to consider if there is anything after death. He thinks only this life matters, and he has lived it to the full. His insatiable greed has made him rich, and he intends to enjoy this life. He states his intent to live in luxury as instruction to his "soul," identifying himself with a life of ease (Luke 12:16–21).

His death is coming soon. Everything he has earned will go to someone else. His barns sit full of grain. If his heart had been oriented toward God, he may have stockpiled it just the same—or donated it or sold it to benefit his community. He might have followed Jesus' instructions to the disciples: "Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys" (Luke 12:33). His heart was in his earthly treasures, not in loving God and others; because the earth is temporary, so is his wealth.
What is the Gospel?
Download the app: