1 Then He called the Twelve together and gave them power and authority over all the demons, and to cure diseases, 2 and then He sent them out to preach the kingdom of God and to cure the sick.
3 So He said to them, "Take nothing with you for your journey, no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, nor even have two shirts. 4 Into whatever house you go, stay there and continue to go out from it as headquarters. 5 And when you leave that city, shake off the very dust from your feet as a protest against all the people who do not welcome you." 6 And so they set out and went from village to village, telling the good news and curing people everywhere.
7 Now Herod the governor heard of all that was taking place, and he continued to be puzzled over the reports -- by some that John had risen from the dead, 8 by others that Elijah had appeared, and by still others that one of the ancient prophets had come back to life. 9 So Herod said, "John I beheaded, but who can this be about whom I hear such reports?" So he was trying to see Him.
10 Now the apostles returned and told Jesus all that they had done. Then He took them and privately retired to a town called Bethsaida. 11 But the crowds learned of it, and followed Him; and He welcomed them and began to speak to them about the kingdom of God and to cure the people who needed to be cured.
12 As the day began to decline, the Twelve came up and said to Him, "Send the crowd off to the villages and farms around, to get lodging and to find food there, for we are in a destitute place here."
13 But He said to them, "Give them something to eat yourselves." Then they said, "We have only five loaves and two fish, unless we go ourselves and buy food for all these people." 14 For there were about five thousand men. So He said to His disciples, "Have them sit down in reclining groups of fifty each." 15 And they did so, and made all the people sit down and recline. 16 Then He took the five loaves and two fish and looked up to heaven and blessed them, and He broke them in pieces and gave them to the disciples to pass on to the people. 17 And they all ate and had aplenty, and what they had left over was taken up, twelve baskets of broken pieces.
18 One day while He was praying in solitude, His disciples were nearby, and He asked them, "Who do people say that I am?"
19 They answered, "John the Baptist; though others say Elijah, and still others that one of the ancient prophets has come back to life."
20 So He said to them, "But who do you, yourselves, say that I am?" Peter answered, "The Christ of God!"
21 But He particularly warned, yea, even commanded, them not to tell this to anybody, 22 as He said, "The Son of Man has to endure great suffering and be disowned by the elders, the high priests, and the scribes, and be put to death but be raised to life on the third day."
23 Then He said to them all, "If anyone chooses to be my disciple, he must say 'No' to self, put the cross on his shoulders daily, and continue to follow me. 24 For whoever chooses to save his lower life will lose his higher life, but whoever gives up his lower life for my sake will save his higher life. 25 For what benefit will it be to a man to gain the whole world and lose or forfeit himself? 26 For whoever is ashamed of me and my teaching, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him, when He comes back in all the splendor of His Father and of the holy angels. 27 I solemnly say to you, some of you who stand here will certainly live to see the kingdom of God."
28 Now about eight days after Jesus said this, He took Peter, John, and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. 29 And while He was praying, the look on His face changed, and His clothes turned dazzling white. 30 And two men were talking with Him. They were Moses and Elijah, 31 who appeared in splendor and were speaking of His departure which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem.
32 Now Peter and his companions had been overcome by sleep, but all at once they became wide awake and saw His splendor and the two men who were standing with Him. 33 And just as they were starting to leave Him, Peter said to Jesus, "Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three tents, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah" -- although he did not know what he was saying.
34 But as he was saying this, a cloud came and was circling over them, and they were frightened as the two visitors entered into the cloud. 35 Then a voice came out of the cloud and said, "This is my Son, my Chosen One; continue to listen to Him!"
36 When the voice had ceased, Jesus was found to be alone. And they kept silence and told no one anything that they had seen at that time.
37 The next day, when they had come down from the mountain, a great crowd met Him. 38 Then a man in the crowd at once shouted, "Teacher, I beg you to look at my son, because he is my only child; 39 all at once a spirit seizes him, and he suddenly screams, and it convulses him until he foams at the mouth, and in a struggle it bruises him and then leaves him. 40 I begged your disciples to drive it out, but they could not."
41 Then Jesus answered, "O you unbelieving, stubborn people of the times! How long must I be with you and put up with you? Bring him here to me."
42 Even while the boy was coming to Him, the demon dashed him down and convulsed him, but Jesus reproved the foul spirit and cured the boy and gave back to his father. 43 So they all continued to be utterly astounded at the greatness of God. Now while everybody was wondering at all that He was doing, He said to His disciples, 44 "You must store away in your memories these words, for the Son of Man is going to be turned over to the hands of men!"
45 But they remained ignorant of what this meant; indeed, it had been hidden from them, so that they did not grasp it, and they were afraid to ask Him about this statement.
46 Now a controversy sprang up among them as to which of them might be the greatest. 47 But Jesus, as He knew that the controversy was going on in their hearts, took a little child and had it stand by His side. 48 Then He said to them, "Whoever welcomes this little child on my account is welcoming me, and whoever welcomes me is welcoming Him who sent me; for the one who is lowliest among you all is really great."
49 Then John answered, "Master, we saw a man driving out demons by the use of your name, and we tried to stop him, because he does not belong to our followers."
50 Jesus said to him, "Stop hindering him, for the man who is not against you is for you."
51 Now as the time was coming to a head when He should be taken up to heaven, He firmly set His face to continue His journey to Jerusalem; 52 so He sent messengers before Him. Then they went on and entered into a Samaritan town, to make preparations for Him. 53 But they would not receive Him, because He was facing in the direction of Jerusalem. 54 When the disciples, James and John, saw this, they said, "Lord, do you want us to bid fire come down from heaven and consume them?"
55 But He turned at once and reproved them. 56 Then they went on to a different village.
57 While they were going along the road, a man said to Him, "I will follow you wherever you go."
58 But Jesus said to him, "Foxes have holes, even wild birds have roosts, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head." 59 He said to another man, "Follow me." But he said, "Let me first go back and bury my father."
60 Then He answered him, "Leave the dead to bury their own dead; but you go on and continue to spread the good news of the kingdom of God."
61 Still another man said, "I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say 'Goodbye' to the homefolks."
62 Jesus said to him, "No one who puts his hand to the plow, and then continues to look back, is fitted for service in the kingdom of God."