In Luke 12:32, Jesus addressed His disciples as the “little flock, because your Father has chosen to give you the kingdom.” The Watchtower argues HERE that this “little flock” includes only the 144,000 mentioned in Revelation 7 and 14, who are a special class of anointed Christians that will go to heaven whereas the rest of the faithful followers of God will live forever on a paradise earth.
Luke 12:32 does not teach this. Nowhere does Jesus specify the eternal location of this “little flock” in the context of Luke 12. The only indication is the fact that they will be given “the kingdom.”
The teaching of the “little flock” heavenly class up and against a “great crowd” earthly class (Rev. 7:9) becomes especially problematic when we consider the context of Luke 12. The context does not teach that the flock is called “little” because Jesus is distinguishing them from a much larger, earthly class of believers. Instead, the context shows that Jesus was speaking to a crowd of “many thousands of people” (12:1, 13-21) before turning to his disciples (12:22) and referring to them as “little flock” (12:32) in distinction to the much larger crowd before them.
Nowhere does Jesus state or imply that the crowd before Him wouldn’t be given the kingdom. For that to be true, the following conditions would be required according to Watchtower teaching:
- No one in the large crowd would become a follower of Jesus after the day of Pentecost.
- Only those dying before Pentecost or living after 1935 could have the hope of living forever on earth.
Even assuming Watchtower theology, these conditions are extremely unlikely. The truth is, the giving of the kingdom is not limited to a select group of Christians. Instead, all Christians and old covenant believers are given the kingdom:
“Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.'” (Matt. 25:34)
“Many will come from east and west, and recline at the table with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matt. 8:11)
“In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth when you see Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, but yourselves being thrown out.” (Luke 13:28)
Simply put, in Luke 12:32 Jesus is distinguishing the disciples from the larger crowd. To read more into this, especially of a two classes theology, is presumptive.