Luke 9:41

"You unbelieving and perverse generation," Jesus replied, "how long shall I stay with you and put up with you? Bring your son here."

Was Jesus disappointed with his disciples?

  • Does this answer your question: To whom was Christ referring to in Luke 9:41?
    – agarza
    Jun 3 at 16:10
  • 1
    I think "frustrated" might better describe Jesus' reaction here.
    – Dottard
    Jun 3 at 22:26
  • Yes, of course He was. But is not it self-evident? As to "disappointed", "angered", "infuriated", "saddened", - those nuances are impossible to define, for the Evangelist does not give them, for a good reason, that we may ourselves "flesh out" the skeleton of the narration with a gamut of colours and nuances and thus be, in a way, co-writers of the Evangelium. Jul 5 at 8:14

Was Jesus disappointed with his disciples in Luke 9:41?

Not exactly, it was more of a rebuke. He did similarly on another occasion in

Luke 24:25

He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken!

Jesus knew the sad reality of people in John 2:24

But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all people.

At one of Jesus' darkest hours, he understood the human condition in Matthew 26:41

“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

On a more positive note, Jesus praised a Gentile in Matthew 8:10

When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him, “Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith.

Jesus knew all men. If he had trusted men, then he would have been disappointed.


Jesus expressed disappointment with His disciples on a number of occasions, including the famous "get thee behind me Satan" declared to Peter (see Matthew 16:23).

Jesus had high expectations, like "be ye therefore perfect" (Matthew 5:48), and let people know when they fell short. But He was also willing to praise His imperfect followers when they did well. E.g. "blessed art thou Simon" (Matthew 16:17).

This high-expectation, high-praise model is a valuable leadership trait.

As noted in the post linked by agarza, it is not clear that this particular chastisement is directed at the apostles. Unlike the Gospel of John, when Luke wants to refer to the apostles he almost always says "the twelve", rather than "the disciples", the latter being a broader, more nebulous group in Luke's Gospel.


Was Jesus disappointed with his disciples in Luke 9:41?

The answer is "No".

Apparently, the scribes are criticizing the disciples because of their failure to heal the boy, perhaps ridiculing their efforts. So instead of replying to the distraught father, Jesus addresses the crowd, saying: “O faithless and twisted generation, how long must I continue with you? How long must I put up with you?” These strong words certainly apply to the scribes who have been making trouble for his disciples in his absence. Turning to the distressed father, Jesus says: “Bring him here to me.”

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