1 Jesus then called the twelve apostles together and gave them power and authority over all evil spirits and [the ability] to heal diseases. 2 And He sent them out to preach the [coming] kingdom of God and to heal sick people.
3 He said to them, "Do not take anything with you during your travels; not [even] a walking stick [Note: By comparing this and the restriction in Matt. 10:10, with the permission given in Mark 6:8, the harmony seems to be "if you do not already have a walking stick, do not get one"], or a traveling bag [for personal belongings], or food, or money, or [even] two coats [Note: Mark 6:9 says, "take only one coat" confirming the idea that Jesus was saying, in effect, "do not take anything extra, go just as you are"]. 4 And whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave that place. 5 And those people who do not welcome you, shake the dust off of your shoes as evidence against them." [Note: This was a Jewish custom showing disdain, and intended to suggest their unworthiness] 6 So, they left and went throughout the villages preaching the good news and healing people everywhere.
7 Now when King Herod, the tetrarch [i.e., governor of that district] heard about all that was happening [concerning Jesus], he was perplexed because some people were saying that John [the Immerser] had risen from the dead; 8 some [were saying] that [the prophet] Elijah had appeared; and [still] others [were saying] that one of the [other] prophets of old had risen again [from the dead]. 9 Then Herod said, "I had John decapitated, so who is this person about whom I hear such things?" And he became eager to see Jesus.
10 When the apostles returned they told Jesus what they had done. Then Jesus took them and went away privately to a town called Bethsaida. [Note: This town was on the east side of Lake Galilee, and apparently was a different "Bethsaida" from the one mentioned in Mark 6:45]. 11 But the crowds found out about it [i.e., where Jesus had gone], so they followed Him [there]. He welcomed them and spoke to them about the [coming] kingdom of God and cured those who needed healing.
12 Then late in the day the twelve apostles came and said to Jesus, "Send the crowd away so they can go into the villages and the surrounding countryside to find lodging and food because this place is deserted."
13 But He said to the apostles, "You men give them something to eat." But they replied, "We have only five loaves of [barley] bread [See John 6:9] and two [probably smoked] fish, unless we go and buy [more] food for all these people." 14 For there were about five thousand men [there]. So, He said to His disciples, "Have these people recline [on the grass. See Matt. 14:19] in groups of about fifty each." 15 So, the disciples did this, and had all the people recline [on the grass in groups]. 16 Then Jesus took the five loaves of bread and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, asked God's blessing on the food. [Then] He broke it [in pieces] and gave it to the disciples to distribute to the crowds. 17 They all ate until they were full, then gathered up twelve baskets [full] of the remaining broken pieces.
18 And it happened while Jesus was praying off by Himself that His disciples joined Him. He asked them, saying, "Who are the crowds saying that I am?"
19 And they answered, " [Some say you are] John the Immerser, while others say [the prophet] Elijah, and [still others say] that one of the [other] prophets of old has risen again [from the dead]."
20 Then Jesus said to them, "But who do you men say that I am?" And Peter answered, " [You are] the Christ of God [i.e., God's specially chosen one]."
21 Then He sternly ordered them not to tell this to anyone, 22 saying, "The Son of man must suffer many things and be rejected by the [Jewish] elders, leading priests and experts in the law of Moses. Then He will be killed and [yet] be raised up on the third day."
23 Then He said to everyone, "If anyone wants to be my follower, he should deny self [i.e., of always having its own way] and accept his cross [i.e., his responsibilities, with all their difficulties] everyday, and [then he can] become my follower. 24 For whoever would [try to] save his life [i.e., by neglecting spiritual things] will lose it [i.e., miss out on the blessings of God]. But whoever [willingly] loses his life [i.e., in commitment to God's service] for my sake, that person will save it [i.e., obtain both temporal and spiritual blessings]. 25 For what is a person benefited if he gains the whole world [i.e., of material things] and [yet] loses [his spiritual life] or gives himself up [to spiritual ruin]? 26 For whoever will be ashamed of me and of my words, the Son of man will [also] be ashamed of him when He returns in His own splendor and that of the Father and of the holy angels. 27 But I tell you the truth, there are some people standing here who will surely not experience death until they see that God's kingdom has come [i.e., in a demonstration of power. See Mark 9:1]."
28 And it happened about eight days after Jesus said these things that He took Peter, John and James with Him and went up in the mountain to pray. [Note: This was probably Mt. Tabor, which was nearby]. 29 And as He was praying, the appearance of His face was [miraculously] changed and His clothing became dazzling white. 30 Then suddenly two men were [seen] talking with Jesus. They were Moses and Elijah, 31 who appeared in splendor, and were speaking of Jesus' [coming] departure [i.e., His imminent death], which He was soon to experience at Jerusalem.
32 Now Peter and those with him [i.e., James and John] had been very sleepy, but became wide awake when they saw the splendor of Jesus and the two men standing with Him. 33 And it happened, as the two men were leaving Him, that Peter said to Jesus, "Master, it is [so] good for us to be here. Let us make three [small] shelters, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah." [But] he did not realize what he was saying. [See note at Matt. 17:4]
34 And while he was speaking, a cloud appeared and engulfed them and the apostles were afraid as Moses and Elijah entered the cloud [i.e., and disappeared]. 35 Then a voice spoke out of the cloud, saying, "This is My Son, [whom] I have chosen; listen to Him."
36 And after the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. But the apostles kept quiet [about this incident], and did not tell anyone at that time about anything they had seen.
37 And it happened on the next day, when they had come down from the mountain, that a large crowd met Jesus. 38 Just then a man from the crowd shouted out, "Teacher, I beg you, look at my son [i.e., favorably], for he is my only child. 39 For when an evil spirit takes hold of him he suddenly screams and [then] it throws him into convulsions so that he foams [at the mouth]. And it does not want to leave him, [even after] severely bruising him. 40 And I begged your disciples to drive it out, but they could not."
41 And Jesus replied, saying, "You perverse generation of faithless people! How long must I be [patient] with you, and put up with you [i.e., before you understand]? Bring your son here."
42 And while the boy was approaching [Jesus], an evil spirit threw him to the ground in a convulsion. But Jesus spoke sternly to the evil spirit and [then] returned him to his father healed. 43 And everyone was amazed at [seeing] the greatness of God. But while they were all amazed at everything Jesus was doing, He said to His disciples, 44 "Pay close attention to what I am saying, for the Son of man will be handed over to [evil] men."
45 But they did not understand what He was talking about, for it was hidden from them, so that they would not understand its meaning. And they were afraid to ask Him about what He had said.
46 Then a dispute developed among Jesus' disciples as to which one of them was the greatest. 47 When Jesus knew what they were disputing about in their minds, He took a small child and placed him at His side, 48 and said to the disciples, "The person who welcomes this little child in my name [i.e., because he belongs to me], welcomes me [also]. And the person who welcomes me [i.e., into his life ?] welcomes God, who sent me. For that person who is the least [significant] among you men is the one who is the greatest [in importance]."
49 Then [the apostle] John answered and said, "Master, we saw someone driving out evil spirits by [using] your name, so we told him not to, because he was not following [you] with us."
50 But Jesus said to him, "Do not try to stop him, for the person who is not against you is for you."
51 And it happened when the time came for Jesus to be taken up [to heaven] that He firmly determined to go to Jerusalem. 52 So, He sent messengers on ahead of Him, who went and entered a Samaritan village to prepare for Him [i.e., for His food and lodging]. 53 And these Samaritans did not welcome Him because He was heading for Jerusalem. [Note: They perceived He was a Jew and Samaritans did not associate with Jews]. 54 And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said [to Him], "Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to burn them up?"
55 But He turned to them and spoke sternly. {{Some manuscripts add "You do not know what kind of a spirit you represent, 56 for the Son of man did not come to destroy men's lives but to save them"}} So, they went to another village.
57 And as they were going along the road, a certain man [i.e., an expert in the law of Moses. See Matt. 8:19] said to Him, "I will follow you wherever you go."
58 Jesus replied to him, "The foxes have dens [in which to live] and the birds of the sky have nests [in which to roost], but the Son of man does not have anywhere to lay His head." 59 And [then] He said to another person, "Become my follower." But he replied, "Lord, allow me to go and bury my father first."
60 But Jesus replied to him, "Let the [spiritually] dead bury their own dead [i.e., let them care for their family members until they die], but you go and proclaim the [coming] kingdom of God."
61 Then another person said [to Jesus], "Lord, I will become your follower, but first let me say goodbye to my family." [Note: There was the likelihood that family members might try to dissuade him from his commitment to follow the Lord].
62 But Jesus said to him, "Nobody who begins plowing [a field] and then looks back [i.e., in regret for beginning such an arduous task] is suited for [serving in] the kingdom of God."