1 And Jesus said to them, "Truly I tell you, there are some people standing here who will surely not experience death until they see that God's kingdom has come in [a demonstration of] power."
2 And after six days had passed, Jesus took Peter, James and John aside alone and went up to a high mountain [i.e., probably Mt. Tabor, which was nearby]. [There] His whole appearance was [miraculously] changed in front of them. 3 His clothing became dazzling and extremely white; whiter than anyone in the world could [possibly] launder them. 4 Then Elijah, along with Moses, appeared to them and they were talking with Jesus.
5 And Peter said to Jesus, "Rabbi [i.e., Teacher], it is good for us to be here. Let us build three small shelters, one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah." [See note at Matt. 17:4] 6 For he did not know what to say, because they [all] became very afraid.
7 [Just then] a cloud engulfed them and a voice spoke out of the cloud saying, "This is my dearly loved Son, listen to Him."
8 And suddenly they looked all around them, but the only one they saw with them was Jesus.
9 And as they were coming down from the mountain Jesus ordered His disciples not to tell anyone what they had seen until [after] the Son of man was raised again from the dead. 10 So, they kept what He told them to themselves, discussing [only] among themselves what "rising again from the dead" meant.
11 Then His disciples asked Him, "Why is it, [since you are obviously the Messiah], that the experts in the law of Moses say that Elijah must come first?"
12 Jesus answered them, "Elijah truly will come first and restore all things [i.e., to their proper perspective concerning the Messiah]. And it is [also] written [in the Scriptures] about the Son of man, that He would suffer very much and be rejected. 13 But I tell you, Elijah has [already] come, and they did to him what they wanted to, just like it was written about him [in the Scriptures]."
14 And when Peter, James and John [See verse 2] returned to [the rest of] the disciples, they saw a large crowd gathered around them, and the experts in the law of Moses disputing with them. 15 And immediately, upon seeing Jesus, the entire crowd ran to greet Him in great amazement [i.e., possibly over His sudden appearance]. 16 And He asked the crowd, "What are you arguing about with my disciples?"
17 And someone in the crowd answered Him, "Teacher, I brought to you my son, who is dominated by a spirit which causes him to be a mute. 18 Wherever it seizes him, it throws him down and he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth and stiffens out. I spoke to your disciples, asking them to drive it out, but they were not able to."
19 Jesus said to them, "You generation of faithless people How long must I be with you [i.e., before you understand]? How long do I have to be patient with you? Bring the sick boy to me." 20 Then they [i.e., some people from the crowd] brought the sick boy to Jesus, and when the spirit saw Him, it immediately caused the boy to have convulsions and to fall to the ground and roll around, foaming at the mouth. 21 Jesus asked the boy's father, "How long has this been happening to him?" And he answered, "Since he was a small child. 22 And frequently the evil spirit has tried to kill him, throwing him into a fire or into the water. But if you can do anything [for him], have pity on us and help us."
23 And Jesus said to him, "'If you can.' [Note: By repeating the man's words Jesus seems to be saying, "You mean, if YOU can believe"]. Everything is possible to the person who believes [it can happen]."
24 Immediately the father of the boy cried out, "I do believe; help me to have more faith."
25 When Jesus saw a crowd running together [toward Him], He spoke sternly to the evil spirit [in the boy], saying to it, "You deaf-mute spirit, I order you to come out of this boy and to never return to him again."
26 The spirit shrieked and caused violent convulsions [in the boy], then came out of him. The boy appeared to be dead, so that most of the people were saying, "He is dead." 27 But Jesus grasped his hand and lifted him up, and he arose [fully healed].
28 And when Jesus had come into a house, His disciples asked Him privately, "Why could we not drive out the evil spirit [from that boy]?"
29 He answered them, "This kind [of spirit] cannot be driven out except by praying."
30 So, they left there and traveled through Galilee, but Jesus did not want anyone to know about it. 31 For He taught His disciples, saying to them, "The Son of man will be handed over to [evil] men and they will kill Him, and three days after He dies He will rise up again." 32 But His disciples did not understand what He meant and were afraid to ask Him.
33 Then Jesus and His disciples came to Capernaum [Note: This city on the northwest shore of Lake Galilee had become sort of a headquarters for Jesus when He was in this region]. When He [and His disciples] entered a house He asked them, "What were you discussing on the way here?" 34 But they kept quiet for they had been arguing with one another over which one of them was the greatest. 35 So, He sat down and called the twelve apostles and said to them, "If anyone [of you] should [try to] be first [in importance] he will [end up] being last, and become the servant of all [the others]. 36 And He took a little child and placed it in front of them, and lifting the child up into His arms, He said to them, 37 "Whoever welcomes one such little child [as this] for my sake, welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me, does not welcome me [only], but [also] the One who sent me."
38 [Then] John [the apostle] said to Him, "Teacher, we saw someone driving out evil spirits by using your name, so we told him to stop doing it, because he was not following [You] with us."
39 But Jesus said, "Do not try to stop him, for there is not anyone who performs a supernatural deed using my name who will be able to quickly say something bad about me. 40 For the person who is not against us is for us. 41 Truly I tell you, whoever will give you [even] a cup of water to drink because you belong to Christ will certainly not lose his [temporal or eternal] reward.
42 And whoever causes one of these little ones [i.e., humble followers of the Lord. See Matt. 18:6] who believes in me to be led astray [from God], he would have been better off to have had a huge millstone tied around his neck and thrown into the ocean [Note: This was a heavy, circular stone rolled over grain to crush it, and moved by an animal walking in a circle]. 43 And if your hand becomes the occasion for falling away [from God], cut it off; it would be better for you to enter [never ending] life disabled, rather than keeping both hands and going to hell, into the fire that cannot be put out [i.e., all because it caused you to fall away from God]. {{Verse 44 is absent from many manuscripts}}. 44 (OMITTED TEXT)
45 And if your foot becomes the occasion for falling away [from God], cut it off; it would be better for you to enter [never ending] life crippled, rather than keeping both feet and being thrown into hell. {{Verse 46 is absent from many manuscripts}}. 46 (OMITTED TEXT)
47 And if your eye becomes the occasion for falling away [from God] gouge it out; it would be better for you to enter the kingdom of God with [only] one eye, rather than keeping both eyes and being thrown into hell [i.e., all because one of them caused you to fall away from God]. 48 For in hell the worm of those who are there will never die [i.e., their gnawing punishment will never cease] and the fire [there] will never go out.
49 For everyone will be salted with fire. [Note: This meant either the suffering "salt" of fiery trials (the sacrifices of verses 43-47 or the punishing "salt" of being thrown into a fiery hell (verse 45-48)]. 50 "Salt is good, but if it loses its salty flavor, what will you use to restore it? [i.e., it is difficult to restore the "salt" of sacrificial commitment to God once it is lost]. You should have salt in yourselves [i.e., develop the qualities of preserving, purifying commitment to God], and live peacefully with one another [i.e., instead of in rivalry. See 9:33-34].