Thematic Bible: History of


Thematic Bible








































Now Peter was sitting outside in a courtyard and a servant-girl approached him and said, "You also were with Jesus, the Galilean." But he denied [it] in front of all of them, saying, "I do not know what you are talking about." And when he had gone out by the gate, another servant-girl saw him and said to those nearby, "This man also was with Jesus of Nazareth." read more.
And he denied [it] again, [this time] with an oath, saying, "I do not [even] know the man." And a little later, those standing nearby came to Peter and said, "[We know] for sure, you also are one of them [i.e., Jesus' disciples], because your accent gives you away." Then Peter began to curse and swear, "[I tell you], I do not know the man." And immediately a rooster crowed. Then Peter remembered the words Jesus had said, "Before the rooster crows, you will deny [knowing] me three times." And he went out and cried bitterly.

And those who had arrested Jesus led Him away to the house of Caiaphas, the head priest, where the experts in the law of Moses and the [Jewish] elders were gathered. But Peter followed Him from a distance [as they were going] to the courtyard of the head priest. He went inside [i.e., eventually. See John 18:15-16] and sat down with the [Jewish] officers to see how things would turn out [i.e., with Jesus' trial].

Now when Peter was in the courtyard downstairs [i.e., from where the Sanhedrin was having its meeting. See verse 55], one of the head priest's servant girls came in, and seeing Peter warming himself by the fire, she looked at him and said, "You were with Jesus from Nazareth, too." But he denied it, saying, "I do not know or understand what you are talking about." Then he went out onto the porch and the rooster crowed. read more.
When the servant girl saw him [there], she again began saying to those nearby, "This man is one of them [i.e., a disciple of Jesus]." But again he denied it. Then after a little while those standing nearby said to Peter again, "We know for sure that you are one of them because you are from Galilee." [Note: Peter's accent gave him away. See Matt. 26:73]. Then Peter began to curse and swear, saying, "I do not know this man you are talking about." Immediately the rooster crowed for the second time and Peter was reminded of the words of Jesus, who had said to him, "You will deny [knowing] me three times before the rooster crows twice." And as he thought about this, he cried.

Now Simon Peter had been standing and warming himself [by the outdoor charcoal fire]. So, someone asked him, "Are you not one of His disciples, too?" Peter denied it, saying, "[No], I am not." One of the head priest's slaves, who was a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, said, "Did I not see you in the orchard with him?" So, Peter denied it again, and immediately the rooster crowed.

Then they led Jesus away to the head priest, and all the leading priests, [Jewish] elders and experts in the law of Moses came together with Him. But Peter had followed Him from a distance, right into the courtyard of the head priest. He was sitting there with the [Jewish] officers, warming himself by the light of the fire.

Then they arrested Jesus and led Him away to the head priest's house [i.e., Caiaphas. See Matt. 26:57]. But Peter followed Him from a distance [i.e., as they went to the head priest's courtyard]. And when they [i.e., the priest's servants] had built a fire in the middle of the courtyard, they sat down together [i.e., to warm themselves. See Mark 14:67], with Peter [sitting] among the group. Then a certain [servant] girl saw Peter sitting there in the light of the fire. As she stared at him she said, "This man was with Jesus, too." read more.
But Peter denied it, saying, "Woman, I do not [even] know Him." Then a little while later, someone else saw Peter and said, "You are one of them also [i.e., one of Jesus' disciples]." But Peter replied, "Man, I am not." And about an hour later someone else stated emphatically, "I know for sure that this man was also with him [i.e., Jesus], for he is from Galilee [too]." [Note: Peter's accent gave him away. See Matt. 26:73]. But then Peter said, "Man, I do not know what you are talking about." Just then, as he was speaking, the rooster crowed. Then the Lord turned and gave Peter a [penetrating] glance. And Peter remembered the words of the Lord, how He had said to him, "You will deny [knowing] me three times before the rooster crows today." Then Peter went out and cried bitterly.

They led Him to Annas first [Note: This man was a former head priest. See Luke 3:2], for he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was head priest that year. Now Caiaphas was the one who had advised the Jews that it was profitable for one man to die for the people. [See 11:50]. Simon Peter followed along with another disciple. [Note: Some think this refers to the apostle John himself, but there is no strong evidence in favor of that conclusion]. Now that disciple was [well-] known to the head priest, so was able to enter his courtyard with Jesus read more.
while Peter stood outside at the gate. So, the other disciple, who was [well-] known to the head priest, went outside and spoke to the girl gatekeeper, [who] then brought Peter inside [too]. So, the slave-girl gatekeeper asked Peter, "Are you not one of this man's disciples, too?" "[No], I am not," Peter replied. Now the [head priest's] slaves and the [Temple] guards were standing around a charcoal fire they had made to warm themselves by, because it was cold. And Peter was also warming himself with them.


Then Pilate called together the leading priests, the [Jewish] leaders and the people, and said to them, "You brought this man to me, claiming he was inciting people to disloyalty [i.e., to the government]. And look, I questioned him in front of you people but did not find him guilty of the charges you or Herod have brought [against him]. For Herod sent him back to us and now I find that he has not done anything deserving of death. read more.
Therefore, I will have him punished and [then] release him." {{Some ancient manuscripts include verse For Pilate was required to release one prisoner to the people at the [Passover] Festival}}. But the people all joined together shouting, "Take this man [i.e., Jesus] and release Barabbas to us [instead]." [Now] Barabbas was a person who had been thrown into prison for [inciting] a rebellion in the city [of Jerusalem] and for committing murder. Then Pilate spoke to them again [because] he wanted to release Jesus, but they continued shouting, "Crucify him, crucify him." So, Pilate called out to them a third time, "Why [should he be crucified]; what wrong has this man done? I have not found any reason for putting him to death, so I will punish him and [then] release him." But the people loudly demanded that Jesus be crucified. And their shouting won out. So, Pilate issued the sentence the people were demanding and released the man they had asked for [i.e., Barabbas], who had been thrown into prison for [inciting] a rebellion and committing murder. But he turned Jesus over to the people do with Him whatever they wanted.

Now at the [Passover] Festival, the governor was accustomed to releasing whatever prisoner the crowd wanted. There was at that time in custody a notorious prisoner named Barabbas. Therefore, when the people had gathered together, Pilate asked them, "Whom do you want me to release, Barabbas or Jesus, who is called 'Christ'?" read more.
For he knew that the reason they had turned Jesus over to him was out of envy. Then while he was seated in Pilate's courtroom of justice, Pilate's wife sent [word] to him, saying, "You should have nothing to do with that innocent man. For I was very troubled in a dream over him today." [Note: That is, she was troubled over a dream she had before waking up that morning]. Now the leading priests and [Jewish] elders persuaded the crowds to ask for Barabbas [to be released] and for Jesus to be killed. But the governor asked them, "Which one of these two men do you want me to release to you?" And they answered, "Barabbas." Pilate replied, "Then what should I do to Jesus, who is called 'Christ'?" They all shouted, "Let him be crucified!" And he said, "Why [should he be]? What wrong has he done?" But they shouted out even louder, "Let him be crucified!" So, when Pilate saw that he was not convincing anyone, but that a riot was brewing instead, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd saying, "I am not responsible for this man's blood. [Note: Some ancient manuscripts say "righteous man's blood"]. You tend to the matter." And all the people answered, "Let his blood be on our hands, and on our children's [as well]." Then he released Barabbas to them, but he had Jesus flogged and then turned over to be crucified.

Now at the Passover Festival Pilate customarily released whatever prisoner the people asked him to. One prisoner, named Barabbas, was kept chained up in prison along with men who had committed murder during a rebellion. The crowd [then] went to Pilate and asked him to do what he was accustomed to doing for them [i.e., release a prisoner of their choosing during the Passover Festival]. read more.
Pilate answered them, "Do you want me to release to you the king of the Jews [i.e., Jesus]?" For he perceived that the leading priests had turned Jesus over to him out of envy. But the leading priests stirred up the crowd to insist that Pilate release Barabbas to them instead. [So], Pilate again asked them, "Then what shall I do to this one you call the king of the Jews?" And they shouted out again, "Crucify him " And Pilate said to them, "Why [should we]; what wrong has he done?" But they shouted out even louder, "Crucify him." So Pilate, wanting to satisfy the crowd, released Barabbas to them, and after he had Jesus flogged, he turned Him over to be crucified.

But since you [Jews] have a custom that I should release to you one [prisoner] during the Passover Festival, do you want me to release to you the King of the Jews?" They shouted out again, "[No], not this man. [We want] Barabbas!" [Note: Ironically, Barabbas' name means "son of the father"]. Now Barabbas was a robber.

So, Pilate then took Jesus and had Him flogged. The soldiers wove thorny twigs into a crown and placed it on His head and dressed Him in a purple robe. Then they went [up] to Him and said, "Hey! King of the Jews!" and struck Him [in the face with their hands]. read more.
Now Pilate went outside again and said to the Jewish authorities, "Look, I am bringing him out here to you, so you can know that I do not find him guilty of any crime." So, Jesus came outside wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Then Pilate said to the [assembled] Jewish authorities, "Look, [here is] the man!" Then, when the leading priests and the [Temple] guards saw Him, they shouted out, "Crucify him, crucify him!" Pilate responded by saying, "Take him yourselves and crucify him, because I do not find him guilty of any crime." The Jews replied, "We have a law which requires that he ought to die because he claimed to be the Son of God." So, when Pilate heard this statement, he was [even] more afraid and went back into the headquarters again and said to Jesus, "Where did you come from?" But Jesus did not answer him. Then Pilate said to Him, "Are you not going to speak to me? Do you not know that I have the authority to release you or to crucify you?" Jesus answered him, "You would not have any authority over me unless it were given to you from above [i.e., from God]. So, the person who turned me over to you is guilty of a worse sin." After [hearing] this, Pilate tried to release Jesus, but the Jews shouted out, "If you release this man, you are no friend of Caesar's. Everyone who claims to be a king [i.e., as they had accused Jesus of doing. See 18:37] is in opposition to Caesar." noon] on the Day of Preparation for the Passover Festival. [Note: This would be the day before the Passover Festival]. And Pilate said to the Jews, "Look, [here is] your king!" Then when Pilate heard [them say] this, he brought Jesus outside [again] and sat down on the judge's bench at a place called 'The Stone Pavement,' but in the Hebrew language is called 'Gabbatha.' Now it was about six o'clock in the morning [Note: This was according to Roman time, but if Jewish time were meant, it would have been Then they shouted out, "Take him away; take him away and crucify him!" Pilate replied to them, "Do you want me to crucify your king?" The leading priests answered, "We do not have any [other] king, except Caesar." Finally, Pilate turned Jesus over to them to be crucified.


Now when Peter was in the courtyard downstairs [i.e., from where the Sanhedrin was having its meeting. See verse 55], one of the head priest's servant girls came in, and seeing Peter warming himself by the fire, she looked at him and said, "You were with Jesus from Nazareth, too." But he denied it, saying, "I do not know or understand what you are talking about." Then he went out onto the porch and the rooster crowed. read more.
When the servant girl saw him [there], she again began saying to those nearby, "This man is one of them [i.e., a disciple of Jesus]." But again he denied it. Then after a little while those standing nearby said to Peter again, "We know for sure that you are one of them because you are from Galilee." [Note: Peter's accent gave him away. See Matt. 26:73]. Then Peter began to curse and swear, saying, "I do not know this man you are talking about." Immediately the rooster crowed for the second time and Peter was reminded of the words of Jesus, who had said to him, "You will deny [knowing] me three times before the rooster crows twice." And as he thought about this, he cried.

And while He was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve apostles, came with a large crowd who were carrying swords and clubs. They had come from the leading priests and elders of the [Jewish] people. Now the one who betrayed Him had given them a signal, saying, "Whoever I give a kiss [of greeting to], he is the one, take hold of him." So, immediately he went to Jesus and said, "Greetings, Rabbi," and [then] kissed Him [enthusiastically]. read more.
And Jesus said to him, "[My] friend, [go ahead], do what you came to do." Then the Jewish officers came and arrested Jesus and began taking Him away. Just then, one of those who were with Jesus [i.e., Peter. See John 18:10], reached out with his sword and struck the head priest's servant [with it], shearing off his ear. Then Jesus said to him, "Put your sword back in your belt again, for all those who use the sword will die by the sword. Or, do you think that I cannot appeal to my Father and He will immediately send me more than twelve legions of angels [i.e., Jesus could have called about 72,000 angels to minister to Him. See Matt. 4:11]? How [else] then should the Scriptures be fulfilled that this must happen [than what is taking place]?" [Then] Jesus said to the crowds at that very time, "Have you come out to arrest me with swords and clubs as [you would apprehend] a thief? I sat everyday teaching in the Temple, and you did not [come to] take me. But all this has happened so that the Scriptures of the prophets would be fulfilled." Then all of His disciples left Him and ran away.

And immediately, as Jesus was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve apostles came with a crowd who were carrying swords and clubs. [They had come] from the leading priests, the experts in the law of Moses and the [Jewish] elders. Now the one who turned Him over to the Jewish leaders [i.e., Judas] had given them a signal, saying, "Whoever I give a kiss [of greeting] to, he is the one; arrest him and lead him away under guard." And when Judas came, immediately he went to Jesus and said, "Rabbi," and then kissed Him [enthusiastically]. read more.
Then the soldiers and officers arrested Him and began taking Him away. But a certain disciple that was standing nearby [i.e., Peter. See John 18:10] drew his sword and struck the head priest's servant [i.e., Malchus. See John 18:10], shearing off his ear. Then Jesus said to them, "Have you come out to arrest me with swords and clubs like you would a thief? I was with you every day, teaching in the Temple, and you did not [come to] take me. But this has happened so that the Scriptures would be fulfilled." And all of His disciples left Him and ran away. And a certain young man [Note: Some think this is a reference to Mark himself], who had a linen outer garment thrown over his scantily clad body, was following Jesus until they [i.e., the soldiers and officers] took hold of him. [Note: The wording here does not indicate total nakedness, but rather the wearing of underclothing only] Then he ran away in his underclothing, leaving his linen outer garment behind. Then they led Jesus away to the head priest, and all the leading priests, [Jewish] elders and experts in the law of Moses came together with Him. But Peter had followed Him from a distance, right into the courtyard of the head priest. He was sitting there with the [Jewish] officers, warming himself by the light of the fire.

While He was still speaking suddenly one of the twelve apostles, named Judas, [who was] leading a crowd, came near Jesus to kiss Him. But Jesus said to him, "Judas, are you betraying the Son of man with a kiss?" And when [the rest of] the disciples, who were gathered around Jesus, saw what was about to happen, they said, "Lord, do you want us to strike them with a sword?" read more.
Then a certain one of them struck the head priest's slave and sheared off his right ear. [Note: It was Peter who struck this man, whose name was Malchus. See John 18:10]. But Jesus replied, "Stop it; [that is] enough!" Then He touched the man's [partially severed] ear and healed him. And Jesus said to the leading priests and captains of the Temple [guard] and the [Jewish] elders that came to take Him, "Have you come out [to arrest me] with swords and clubs as you would [apprehend] a thief? When I was with you every day in the Temple you did not raise a hand against me. But this is your hour [i.e., the time for you to act against me] and the power of darkness [has now taken over]."

Now Judas, who [was soon to] turn Jesus over [to the Jewish authorities] also knew where this place was, for Jesus had frequently met there with His disciples. So, Judas took a detachment of [Roman] soldiers and some [Temple] guards sent from the leading priests and Pharisees, and carrying lanterns, torches and weapons, they went to the orchard. Since Jesus knew everything that was going to happen to Him, He went out and said to them, "Who are you men looking for?" read more.
They answered Him, "Jesus, from Nazareth." Jesus replied to them, "I am [He]." Judas, who was turning Him over [to the Jewish authorities] was standing there with them also. Now when Jesus had said to them, "I am [He]," they [all] moved backward and fell to the ground. [Note: This appears to have been done by some miraculous power]. So, He asked them again, "Who are you looking for?" And they answered, "Jesus, from Nazareth." Jesus said to them, "I [already] told you that I am [He]; so if you are looking for me, let these men [i.e., the apostles] go." [He said this] so the words He had spoken [previously] would be fulfilled [See 17:12], "I did not lose any of those men you [i.e., God] gave me." So, Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it out and struck the head priest's slave, cutting off his right ear. Now the slave's name was Malchus. Then Jesus said to Peter, "Put your sword back in its sheath. Should I not drink the cup [i.e., of suffering] the Father has given me?" So, the detachment of [Roman] soldiers, their commanding officer and the Jewish [Temple] guards arrested Jesus and tied Him up.


Am I not a free man? Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord? [See Acts 9:17; I Cor. 15:8]. Are you people not [the result of] my work in [the service of] the Lord?

Then last of all, He appeared to me also, as someone born abnormally. [Note: This probably refers to Paul being converted later than the rest of the apostles].

And he said [to me], 'The God of our forefathers has appointed you to know His will and to see the Righteous One [i.e., Jesus], and to hear His voice [speaking to you].

But, get up onto your feet, for the reason I have appeared to you is to appoint you a minister and witness of both the things you have [already] seen of me and the things I will [reveal when] appearing to you.

The next night the Lord stood beside Paul [in a supernatural dream] and said, "Take courage, for just as you have testified about me in Jerusalem, so you must also be my witness in Rome."

And when he got close to Damascus, suddenly a [bright, See 22:6] light from the sky shone all around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying, "Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?" Saul replied, "Who are you, sir?" And the voice said, "It is I, Jesus, whom you are persecuting, read more.
but get up, and enter the city [of Damascus] and [there] you will be told what you must do." And the men who were traveling with Saul were speechless, having heard the sound, but not seeing anyone. Saul got up from the ground and opened his eyes but could not see anything, so had to be led by the hand into Damascus. For three days he was blind and neither ate nor drank anything. Now [in the meantime] the Lord spoke in a vision to a certain disciple named Ananias [who lived] in Damascus. He called to him by name, "Ananias." "Yes, Lord, here I am" Ananias replied. The Lord said to him, "Get up and go to Straight Street and ask for a person named Saul, from Tarsus, at the home of Judas; you will find him [there] praying." (Now Saul had seen [in a vision] a man named Ananias coming in and placing his hands on him, restoring his sight). But Ananias answered, "Lord, I have heard from many people about how much harm this man has done to your holy people at Jerusalem. And [now] he is here with authority from the leading priests to tie up [and imprison] everyone who calls on your name." But the Lord replied to him, "Go on your way, for Saul is someone I have especially chosen to carry my name to the [unconverted] Gentiles, kings and the Israelites. I will show him how many things he will have to suffer for my name's sake." So, Ananias left and went to Judas' house and placed his hands on Saul saying, "Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you as you were traveling on the road [to Damascus] sent me so you could receive your sight [back] and be filled with the Holy Spirit."

Then the Lord spoke to Paul in a night vision [i.e., a divinely given dream]: "Do not be afraid, but speak up and do not hold [anything] back,

And I saw [and heard] the Lord saying to me, 'Hurry up, get out of Jerusalem quickly, because the people [here] will reject your testimony about me.'


After Jesus had said these things He went out with His disciples across the Kidron valley. [Note: This was a "wadi," or dry creek bed which carried a torrent of water during the rainy season. It ran parallel with the east wall of Jerusalem, between the city and the Mount of Olives]. There was an [olive] orchard there and Jesus and His disciples went into it.

And after they had sung a hymn, they went up to the Mount of Olives. [Note: This was a small hill just east of Jerusalem]

And after they had sung a hymn, they went up to the Mount of Olives.

Then Jesus came with His disciples to a place called Gethsemene. [Note: This was an olive orchard on a hillside just east of Jerusalem]. He said to them, "You sit here while I go over there and pray." He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee [i.e., James and John] with Him, and [soon] began to be grieved and very distressed. Then He said to them, "My soul is extremely grieved, even to [the point where I could] die. Stay here and be alert with me [i.e., in prayer]." read more.
And He went on ahead a short distance and fell face-down and prayed, "My Father, allow this cup [i.e., of suffering] to pass away from me if it is [at all] possible; nevertheless, let it not be what I want, but what You want [for me]." And [when] He came [back] to where His disciples were and found them asleep, He said to Peter, "What [is this], could you not remain alert with me [in prayer] for one hour? Be alert and pray, so that you do not give in to temptation; the spirit [of a person] is truly willing [i.e., to do a certain thing], but his physical nature is [often too] weak [to carry it out]." He [then] went away a second time and prayed, "My Father, if this [cup of suffering] cannot pass away unless I drink it [i.e., experience the suffering], [then] let what You want be done." And He came [back] again and found them asleep, because they had not been able to keep their eyes open. He left and went away from them again and prayed a third time, saying the same words again. Then He came to His disciples and said to them, "Go ahead and sleep now, and get your rest. See, the time is near and the Son of man is [about to be] turned over into the hands of sinners. Get up, let us be going. Look, the one who will turn me over [to the Jewish leaders] is nearby."

Jesus and His disciples came to a place called Gethsemene [Note: This was an olive orchard on a hillside just east of Jerusalem]. He said to His disciples, "You sit here while I [go away and] pray." And He took Peter, James and John with Him and began to be troubled and deeply distressed. He said to them, "My soul is extremely grieved, even to the point where I could die. Stay here and be alert [i.e., in prayer]." read more.
And He went on ahead a short distance and fell to the ground and prayed for that hour [i.e., that time of terrible grief] to pass away from Him, if it were at all possible. So, He said, "Abba, [which means] Father, everything is possible with you. Take this cup [i.e., of suffering] away from me; however, let it not be what I want but what you want for me." And when He came back and found His disciples sleeping He said to Peter, "Simon, are you sleeping? Could you not stay alert [in prayer] for one hour? Be alert and pray, so that you do not give in to temptation. The spirit of a person is truly willing [i.e., to do a certain thing], but his physical nature is [often] too weak [to carry it out]." And He went away again and prayed, saying the same words. Then He came back again and found His disciples still asleep, because they had not been able to keep their eyes open at all. And He came back a third time and said to them, "Go ahead and sleep now and get your rest. That is enough; the time has come. See, the Son of man is about to be turned over into the hands of sinners. Get up, let us be going. Look, the one who will turn me over [i.e., to the Jewish leaders] is nearby."

Then Jesus went out to the Mount of Olives, as He was accustomed to doing [each evening during His final week], and His disciples followed Him. And when He got there He said to them, "Pray that you do not give in [i.e., to the devil] under trials." Then Jesus went away from them about the distance of a stone's throw and knelt down and prayed, read more.
saying, "Father, if you are willing, take this cup [i.e., of suffering] away from me; nevertheless, let it not be what I want, but what you want [for me]." Now an angel from heaven appeared to Him and strengthened Him. [See Matt. 4:11]. And He became anguished as He prayed more fervently; even His sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground. And when He got up from praying He went to His disciples and found them asleep, exhausted from grief. So, He said to them, "Why were you sleeping? Get up and pray so you do not give in [to the devil] under trials."


And when evening had come, a rich man from Arimathea named Joseph, who was also one of Jesus' disciples, went to [governor] Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. So, Pilate ordered that it be given to him. Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a clean linen cloth read more.
and placed it in his own newly prepared grave, which he had cut out of [a ledge of] rock. Then he [had] a huge stone rolled across the entrance of the grave and went away. Mary from Magdala and the other Mary [i.e., probably Jesus' mother. See verse 56], stood near the grave site. Now on the following day, which was the day after the Preparation [for the Passover Festival], the leading priests and Pharisees assembled in front of Pilate and said, "Sir, we remember what that deceiver said while he was still alive: 'I will rise [from the dead] after three days.' Therefore, give the order to secure the grave site until the third day, so his disciples will not steal his body and then tell the people 'He has risen from the dead.' This last deception would be worse than the first one [i.e., the claim that Jesus rose from the dead would be worse than the claim that he was the Messiah]." Pilate said to them, "Take [a group of] guards [with you]; go and make the grave site as secure as you can." So, they went and secured the grave site, placing a [wax] seal on the stone, while the guards watched.

When evening had come, and since it was the day of Preparation [for the Passover Festival], being the day before the [special] Sabbath Day, Joseph, from Arimathea, a highly respected member of the [Jewish] Council, who was expecting the kingdom of God, went boldly to Pilate [i.e., the Roman appointed governor] and asked [him] for the body of Jesus. Pilate was amazed that Jesus had already died, and calling the military officer to him, asked how long He had been dead. read more.
And when he found out from the military officer, he granted the body to Joseph. [Joseph then] brought a linen cloth, and after taking Jesus down from the cross, wrapped the linen cloth around His body and placed it in a grave site that had been cut out of [a ledge of] rock. Then he rolled a huge stone across the entrance to the cave. [Now] Mary from Magdala and Mary the mother of Joseph [See verse 40] saw where the body was laid.

And just then [there appeared] a member of the [Jewish] Council named Joseph from the city of Arimathea. He was a good man who tried to do what was right, (and who had not agreed with the decision and action of the [Jewish] Council). He was expecting the kingdom of God [to appear soon]. [So], Joseph went to [governor] Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. read more.
[Upon receiving permission] he took it down [from the cross] and wrapped it in a linen cloth, and placed it in a grave site, cut out of [a ledge of] rock, where no one had ever been buried. This happened on the Day of Preparation [for the Passover Festival], as the Sabbath day was about to begin [i.e., shortly before The women who had accompanied Jesus from Galilee followed behind [those carrying the body] and saw where the grave site was and how His body was placed in it. So, they returned [home] and prepared spices and [aromatic] oils [i.e., for embalming Jesus' body]. Then they rested on the Sabbath day according to the [fourth] commandment. [See Ex. 20:10].

Now it was the Day of Preparation [Note: This was the day before the Passover Festival began, and fell on a Friday that year], and the Jews did not permit bodies to remain on a cross over the Sabbath day. (Besides, that Sabbath day was a special day [i.e., since it was both the Passover and the regular weekly Sabbath, as well]). So, they asked Pilate to have Jesus' and the criminals' legs broken [i.e., to speed up their deaths] and then have their bodies taken away. So, the soldiers went and broke the legs of the first [criminal] and then of the other man crucified with Jesus. But when they came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. read more.
However, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus' side with a spear, and immediately blood and water flowed out. And the person who saw this happen is giving a true testimony about it. He knows it is true [and is giving it] so that you will believe [it, also]. For these things happened so that the Scripture would be fulfilled [Ex. 12:46], "Not a [single] bone of his will be broken." And another Scripture says [Zech. 12:10], "People will look at him whom they [had] pierced." After this happened, one of Jesus' disciples (but secretly, for fear of the Jews), named Joseph from Arimathaea, asked Pilate if he could remove Jesus' body [from the cross]. Pilate granted him permission, so he went and removed the body from the cross. Nicodemus, the man who first came to Jesus one night, also went with him [i.e., to claim Jesus' body]. He brought about a seventy-five pound mixture of myrrh and aloes [i.e., aromatic spices used for embalming]. So, they took Jesus' body and wrapped it in linen cloths, with spices, according to customary Jewish burial practices. Now there was an [olive] orchard at the place where Jesus was crucified. And in the orchard there was a new grave site [i.e., a cave-like tomb] where no one had ever been buried. So, they placed Jesus' body there, for it was the Day of Preparation and that was the closest grave site. [Note: Since this was the day before the Passover Festival, and the next day was also the regular weekly Sabbath, they had to bury the body before sundown to comply with Jewish restrictions against working on a Sabbath day].


As they were eating, He said, "Truly I tell you, one of you will turn me over [to the Jewish leaders]." And they were extremely grieved, and each one of them began saying to Him, "Am I the one, Lord?" He answered, "The one who dipped his hand with me into the [sauce] bowl is the one who will turn me over [to the Jewish leaders]. read more.
The Son of man is going [to die], but it is too bad for that person through whom the Son of man is turned over [to the Jewish leaders]! It would be better for that man if he had not been born." Then Judas, the one who betrayed Him asked, "Am I the one, Rabbi?" Jesus answered Him, "You have said so."

As they reclined at the table to eat, [Note: See Matt. 23:6] Jesus said, "Truly I tell you, one of you will turn me over [i.e., to the Jewish leaders]; [it is the one] who is eating with me." And they [all] began to be grieved and said to Him, one by one, "Am I the one?" And He answered them, "It is one of you twelve, [the one] who is dipping [his bread] with me in the sauce bowl. read more.
For the Son of man is going [to die], but it is too bad for that person who will turn me over to the Jewish leaders It would be better for that man if he had not been born."

But look, the hand of the one who is turning me over [i.e., to the Jewish leaders] is with me on the table [i.e., dipping his hand in the sauce bowl. See Matt. 26:23]. For the Son of man is certainly going [to die], just as it has been [pre-] determined, but it is too bad for that person through whom He is [to be] betrayed!" So, the apostles began discussing among themselves which one of them would do such a thing.

After Jesus said this, He felt disturbed in His spirit and declared, "Truly, truly, I tell you, one of you will turn me over [to the Jewish authorities]." The disciples looked at one another, puzzled over who He was talking about. One of Jesus' disciples, [the one] He loved [Note: Probably this was the apostle John] was reclining at the dinner table close to Jesus. read more.
So, Simon Peter motioned [to John] and said, "Ask Jesus which one [of us] He is talking about." So, John leaned over close to Jesus and asked Him, "Lord, who is it?" Jesus answered, "It is the person to whom I give a piece of bread after dipping it [in the sauce bowl]." So, when He had dipped the piece of bread, He took it [out] and gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot. Then after [he ate] the piece of bread, Satan entered Judas' heart. So, Jesus said to him, "Do what you are going to do, and do it quickly." Now, no one at the table knew why He had said this to him. For some of them thought, since Judas was in charge of the [money] bag, that Jesus was telling him, "Buy whatever we need for the [Passover] meal," or that he was [being told] to give [money] to poor people [from it]. So, after eating the piece of bread, Judas went out immediately. And it was nighttime.


And after mocking Him [some more], they removed the [scarlet] robe and put His own clothes back on Him. Then they led Him away to crucify Him. As they were leaving [i.e., probably the city of Jerusalem], they met a man from Cyrene [Note: This was a city in the northern African country of Libya]. His name was Simon and they forced him to go with them so he could carry Jesus' cross [i.e., probably only the cross-beam portion]. And when they had come to the place called Golgotha, which means "the place of a skull" [i.e., probably because it was a skull-shaped knoll in appearance], read more.
they offered Jesus wine mixed with a bitter drug [i.e., for the purpose of dulling the pain of crucifixion. Mark 15:23 calls it "myrrh"], but when He tasted it He refused to drink it.

And when they had mocked Him, they took the purple robe off of Him and put His own clothing [back] on Him. Then they led Him out to crucify Him. They forced a passerby, named Simon of Cyrene [Note: This was a city in the northern African country of Libya], the father of Alexander and Rufus, who was coming in from the countryside, to go with them so he could carry Jesus' cross [i.e., probably only the cross-beam portion]. Then they brought Jesus to the place called Golgotha which, being interpreted, means "the place of the skull" [i.e., probably because it was a skull-shaped knoll in appearance]. read more.
They offered Him wine, mixed with aromatic spices, but He refused to accept it. [Note: Matt. 27:34 calls this "gall," a bitter drug for the purpose of dulling the pain of crucifixion].

Then, as they were leading Jesus away, the soldiers [See Mark 15:16-21] grabbed hold of a man named Simon, from Cyrene [Note: This was a city in the northern African country of Libya], who was coming in from the countryside, and placed the cross [i.e., probably only the cross-beam portion] on him, so he could carry it while following Jesus. A large crowd of people followed Jesus, including some women who wailed [in grief] and mourned over His plight. But Jesus turned and said to them, "Daughters of Jerusalem [i.e., women citizens], do not cry over me, but cry over yourselves and your children. read more.
For look, the time will come when people will be saying, 'Those [women] who are without children and who have never given birth or nursed babies are [truly] happy!' Then they will begin to say to the mountains [Hosea 10:8], 'Fall on us,' and to the hills, 'Cover us [up].' For if people are doing these things [to me] while the [leaves of the] tree are green [i.e., to someone innocent of wrongdoing], what will they do when [the leaves] are dried up [i.e., to the sinful Jews of Jerusalem]?" And two other men, who were criminals, were also led out with Jesus to be put to death.

Finally, Pilate turned Jesus over to them to be crucified. So, they took Jesus [away] and He went out [of the city] carrying the cross by Himself to a place called "The Place of the Skull," [also] called "Golgotha" in the Hebrew language [and "Calvary" in Latin].


Now when morning came, all the leading priests and the elders of the [Jewish] people conferred together against Jesus as to how they might put Him to death. So, they chained Him, led Him away and turned Him over to Pilate, the [Roman] governor.

Now Jesus stood in front of the governor [i.e., Pilate], who asked Him, "Are you the king of the Jews?" Jesus answered him, "You have said so." When He was accused by the leading priests and the [Jewish] elders, He made no reply. Pilate then said to Him, "Do you not hear how many charges the witnesses are bringing against you?" read more.
But He [again] made no reply, not even to a single charge, which caused the governor to be greatly amazed.

As soon as it was morning the leading priests, along with the [Jewish] elders and experts in the law of Moses and the entire Council, held a conference. Then they tied Jesus up, led Him away and turned Him over to Pilate [the Roman governor]. Pilate asked Him, "Are you the king of the Jews?" Jesus answered him, "You have said so." [Then] the leading priests accused Him of many things. read more.
So, Pilate again asked Him, "Do you not have any answer? Look at how many charges they are bringing against you." But still Jesus gave no answer to anything, so that Pilate was amazed.

Then the entire group of them [i.e., of the Jewish elders, priests and law experts] got up [from their Council meeting] and took Jesus to [governor] Pilate. They began bringing accusations against Him, saying, "We discovered this man misleading the people of our nation and telling them not to pay taxes to Caesar, and claiming that he himself was the Messiah, a king!" So, Pilate asked Him, "Are you the king of the Jews?" And Jesus answered him, "You have said so." read more.
Then Pilate said to the leading priests and to the crowds [that had gathered], "I do not find anything wrong with this man." But the group became more insistent, saying, "He is stirring up the people and teaching [these things] throughout all Judea. He began [doing this] in Galilee and [has continued it] even to this place [i.e., Jerusalem]."

Then, early in the morning they led Jesus from Caiaphas to [governor Pilate's] headquarters. But the Jewish authorities would not enter it, because [if they had] they would have become ceremonially unclean, and could not eat the Passover meal. [Note: This was because they regarded a Gentile house as defiling]. So, Pilate went outside to them and asked, "What charge do you bring against this man?" The Jewish authorities answered Pilate, "If this man were not guilty of wrongdoing, we would not have turned him over to you." read more.
So, Pilate said to them, "Take him yourselves and judge him according to your [own] law." [But] the Jews replied to him, "It is not permissible for us to put anyone to death." [They said this] so that the words Jesus had spoken would be fulfilled, regarding the kind of death He would die. [Note: Jesus had predicted he would be "lifted up," indicating a Roman crucifixion. See 12:32-33]. So, Pilate went back into his headquarters and called for Jesus. He said to Him, "Are you the King of the Jews?" Jesus answered, "Are you saying this of your own accord, or did other people tell you about me?" Pilate answered, "Am I a Jew? Your own people and the leading priests turned you over to me. What have you done?" Jesus answered him, "My kingdom does not belong to this world. If it did, then my servants [i.e., disciples] would fight to keep me from being turned over to the Jews. But now my kingdom does not belong here." [i.e., Jesus' kingdom was not based on physical, but spiritual principles]. So, Pilate said to Him, "Are you a king, then?" Jesus answered, "You are [correct in] calling me a 'king.' This was the [very] purpose for which I was born and came into the world, that I should testify about the truth. Every person who wants [to know and obey] the truth listens to me." Pilate replied to Him, "What is truth?" After saying this, Pilate again went outside to the Jews and said to them, "I do not find him guilty of any crime.


Now the leading priests and the entire Council [called "the Sanhedrin"] looked for false witnesses [to testify] against Jesus, in order to put Him to death. But they did not find any [i.e., whose stories harmonized. See Mark 14:56], even though many false witnesses came [forward to testify]. Finally, two [false witnesses] came forward and said, "This man [i.e., Jesus] said, 'I can destroy the Temple of God, and [then] rebuild it within three days.'" read more.
The head priest stood up and said to Him, "Have you nothing to answer? What about this charge being made against you by these people?" But Jesus did not say anything. So, the head priest said to Him, "I command you [to swear] by the living God, [and] to tell us if you are the Christ [i.e., God's specially chosen one], the Son of God!" Jesus replied to him, "You have said so; nevertheless I tell you, from now on you will see the Son of man sitting at the right side of Power [i.e., God Himself], and coming on the clouds of the sky." Then the head priest tore at his clothing [i.e., as an expression of frustration], saying, "He has spoken against God [i.e., by claiming Deity for Himself]. What additional need do we have for witnesses? Look, you [yourselves] have now heard him speaking against God. What do you people think [i.e., about such statements]?" They answered, "He deserves to die." Then they spit in His face and hit Him [with their fists], while others slapped Him [in the face], saying, "Prophesy to us, you 'Christ.' Tell us who hit you?" [Note: By this time Jesus had been blindfolded. See Mark 14:65].

Now the leading priests and the entire Council [called the "Sanhedrin"] were looking for [false] witnesses to testify against Jesus in order to put Him to death, but did not find any. For many persons gave false testimony against Him, but their stories did not harmonize. Then two people [See Matt. 26:60] stood up and gave false testimony against Him, saying, read more.
"We heard him say, 'I will destroy this Temple, which was constructed by hand, and in three days I will build another one, not made by hand.'" And not even [in this attempt did] their testimony harmonize. The head priest stood up in front of them and asked Jesus, "Do you not have anything to answer? What about this charge being made against you by these people?" But Jesus kept quiet and did not give them any answer. Again the head priest asked Him, "Are you the Christ [i.e., God's specially chosen one]?" And Jesus answered, "Yes, I am; and you will see the Son of man sitting at the right side of Power [i.e., God, Himself], and coming on the clouds of the sky." And the head priest tore at his clothing [i.e., as an expression of frustration] and said, "What additional need do we have for witnesses? You [yourselves] have heard him speaking against God. What do you people think [i.e., about such statements]?" And they all condemned Him as deserving the death penalty. And some of them began to spit on Him, then to cover His face [with a blindfold] and hit Him [with their fists], saying, "Prophesy [i.e., tell who hit you]." And the officers in charge of Him also struck Him with their hands.

Now the men who were holding Jesus [in custody] began mocking Him and beating Him. And they blindfolded Him and asked Him, "Prophesy, who is it that hit you?" And they said many other derogatory things against Him. read more.
And when it became daylight, the body of [Jewish] elders of the people, [consisting of] both leading priests and experts in the law of Moses, was gathered together. Then they led Jesus away to their Council [called the "Sanhedrin"], and asked Him, "Tell us if you are the Christ [i.e., God's specially chosen one]." But He replied, "You would not believe me if I [did] tell you [who I am]. And if I asked you [who I am] you would not answer. But from now on the Son of man will be seated at the right side of the powerful God." So, they all asked [Him], "Then are you the Son of God?" And He answered them, "You [are right to] say that I am [the Christ]." And they replied, "Why do we need any more evidence? For we have heard [enough] from his own mouth, ourselves."

Meanwhile, the head priest asked Jesus about His disciples and His teaching. [Note: This was probably Annas, the former "head priest" who later sent Jesus to the current head priest, Caiaphas. See verse 24]. Jesus answered him, "I have spoken publicly to the world; I always taught in the synagogues and in the Temple, where all the Jews assemble. I have never said anything in secret. Why are you asking me? Ask the people who have heard me about what I said to them. Look, these people know what I said."


And after they had crucified Him, the soldiers divided His clothing among themselves by gambling for them. Then they just sat there and watched Him [die]. They attached over His head [i.e., to the upright portion of the cross] the charge made against Him, which read, "This is Jesus, the king of the Jews." read more.
They [also] crucified two thieves with Him, one at His right side and one at His left. And those who passed by [the cross] shouted abuse at Him and shook their heads [in derision], saying, "You who [said you] would destroy the Temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself [from dying]; if you [really] are the Son of God, come down from the cross." In the same way the leading priests, experts in the law of Moses and [Jewish] elders also mocked Him, saying, "He saved other people, [but] he cannot [even] save himself [i.e., from dying]. He is 'the king of Israel;' let him now come down from the cross and then we will believe in him. He trusted in God; now let God deliver him, if He wants [to save him from dying], for he said, 'I am the Son of God.'" And the thieves who were crucified with Him also heaped the same abuse on Him. Now from noon until three o'clock in the afternoon there was darkness over all the land. Then about three in the afternoon Jesus called out in a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama, sabachthani? [Note: These words were spoken in the commonly used Aramaic language], which mean, My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? And when some of those standing there heard this, they said, "This man is calling for Elijah." And immediately one of them ran and got a sponge, soaked it in sour wine and, attaching it to a stick, [lifted it up] and offered Jesus a drink. But the rest of them said, "Let him alone; let us see if Elijah [really] comes to save him." Then Jesus called out again with a loud voice and [finally] gave up His spirit [to God. See Luke 23:46]. Just then the Temple curtain was torn in two from top to bottom, the ground shook, and rocks were split open. Graves opened up and the bodies of many dead saints [i.e., God's holy people] were raised up [from the dead]. They came out of their graves after Jesus' resurrection and entered the holy city [i.e., Jerusalem] where they appeared to many people. Now when the military man in charge, and those with him who were watching Jesus, saw [and felt] the earthquake and the [other] things that happened, they became extremely fearful, saying, "Truly this was the Son of God." And many women, who had followed Jesus from Galilee and had ministered to His needs, were watching [all this] from a distance. Among them were Mary from Magdala; Mary, the mother of James and Joseph [i.e., probably the wife of Clopas. See John 19:25]; and the mother of James and John, the sons of Zebedee [i.e., Salome. Mark 15:40].

So, they crucified Him and divided His clothing by gambling for them to decide what each soldier would get. It was nine o'clock in the morning and they crucified Him. [Note: John 19:14 indicates that the crucifixion took place about noon. This can be harmonized if we take Mark's account to mean when the entire process began]. The inscription, stating the charge against Him, was attached above His head [i.e., to the upright portion of the cross]. It read, "The king of the Jews." read more.
And they also crucified two thieves with Him, one at His right side and one at His left. {{Some ancient manuscripts add verse "And the Scripture was fulfilled, which said, 'He was counted with the lawbreakers.'"}} And those who passed by the cross shouted abuse at Him and shook their heads [in derision], saying, "Ha, you who said you would destroy the Temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself [from dying] and come down from the cross." In the same way, the leading priests also mocked Him among themselves, along with the experts in the law of Moses, saying, "He saved other people, now he cannot even save himself. This 'Christ, the king of Israel,' let him now come down from the cross so we can see it and believe in him." And the thieves who were being crucified with Him also spoke abusively to Him. And when it became noon there was darkness over the entire land until three o'clock in the afternoon. Then at three o'clock Jesus shouted in a loud voice, "Eloi, Eloi, lama, sabachthani?" [Note: These words were in the commonly spoken Aramaic language], which being interpreted, means "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" And when some of those standing there heard this, they said, "Look, he is calling for Elijah." Then one of the soldiers ran and filled a sponge full of sour wine, put it on a stick and gave it to Him to drink, saying, "Let him alone; let us see if Elijah comes to take him down [from the cross]." Then Jesus spoke in a loud voice and gave up His spirit [to God. See Luke 23:46]. Then the Temple curtain was torn in two from top to bottom. And when the military officer in charge of one hundred men, who was standing in front of Jesus, saw Him die like that, he said, "Truly this man was the Son of God." And there were also some women watching all this from a distance. Among them were Mary from Magdala; Mary the mother of the younger James and [his brother] Joseph [i.e., probably the wife of Clopas. See John 19:25]; and Salome [i.e., the mother of James and John and wife of Zebedee. See Matt. 27:56]. These women had ministered to Jesus' needs when they followed Him from Galilee. Others watching were many women who had come up to Jerusalem with Him.

And when they came to the place called "The Skull" [Note: The Latin word for this place is "Calvary"], they crucified Him there, along with the criminals, one at His right side and one at His left. Then Jesus called out, "Father, forgive these people [i.e., the ones responsible for crucifying Him], for they do not know [i.e., realize] what they are doing." Then the soldiers [See John 19:23] divided Jesus' clothing among them by gambling for them. People stood [around] watching [all this], while the leaders even sneered at Him, saying, "He saved other people; [now] let him save himself [i.e., from dying] if he [really] is the Christ, God's specially chosen one." read more.
The soldiers also mocked Him; they came to Him, offering Him sour wine [to drink], saying, "If you [really] are the King of the Jews, save yourself." There was an inscription above Him [i.e., on the upright portion of the cross], stating, "This is the king of the Jews." Then one of the criminals, who was hanging [on a cross also] spoke abusively to Him, saying, "Are you not the Christ [i.e., God's specially chosen one]? [If you are], then save yourself and us." But the other criminal spoke harshly to the first one, saying, "Do you not even have any fear of God [left], since you [too] are experiencing the same sentence of condemnation? And for us it is truly a just sentence, for we are getting back what we deserve for our actions, but this man has not done anything wrong." Then he said, "Jesus, remember [to be merciful to] me when you come into your kingdom." Then Jesus said to him, "Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise [Note: This is a place in God's presence, referred to as "the third heaven" (II Cor. 12:2-4), and where overcomers will be able to eat from "the tree of life" (Rev. 2:7)]." Now when it was about twelve o'clock noon, darkness came over all the land until three o'clock in the afternoon, for the sun's light failed to shine. Then the Temple curtain became torn down the middle. Jesus called out in a loud voice, "Father, I commit my spirit into your hands." And after He said this, He gave up His spirit [i.e., to God in death]. And when the military officer in charge of one hundred men saw what had happened, he honored God [by] saying, "Certainly this man had [always] done what was right." And after the crowds that had gathered to witness this sight saw what had happened they left, beating their chests [i.e., as an expression of anguish over witnessing Jesus' death]. And all of those who knew Him, as well as the women who had followed Him from Galilee [See Matt. 27:55-56], watched all this from a distance.

There they crucified Him, along with two other men, one on each side with Jesus in the middle. Then Pilate had an inscription written and placed on the cross [i.e., on the upright portion, above His head]. It read, "Jesus from Nazareth, the King of the Jews." Many of the Jews read this notice, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city [of Jerusalem]. It was written in the Hebrew, Latin and Greek languages. read more.
But the Jewish leading priests said to Pilate, "Do not write 'The King of the Jews,' but 'He said, I am the King of the Jews.'" Pilate replied, "What I have written I have written." [i.e., "I am not going to change it."] So, when the [Roman] soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took His clothing and divided them into four parts, one for each soldier. They also took His seamless coat [i.e., which was left over], woven from top [to bottom] in one piece, and said to one another, "Let us not tear it [i.e., because of its great value], but gamble to see who gets it." [This was] so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, which said [Psa. 22:18], "They divided my clothing between themselves, and they gambled for my clothing." So, this is what the soldiers did. Now standing near Jesus' cross were His mother; His mother's sister [i.e., Salome, the mother of James and John, the sons of Zebedee. See Matt. 27:55; Mark 15:40]; Mary the wife of Clopas [i.e., the mother of James and Joseph. See Matt. 27:55]; and Mary, from Magdala. So, when Jesus saw His mother standing beside the disciple He loved [i.e., probably the apostle John], He said to her, "[My dear] woman, look, [here is] your son!" Then He said to the disciple, "Look, [here is] your mother!" And from that time onward, this disciple took Jesus' mother to [live in] his own home. Now Jesus knew that everything had been completed [i.e., relating to His crucifixion], so then He said, in order to fulfill Scripture [Psa. 69:21], "I am thirsty." A bottle full of sour wine was sitting nearby so someone put a sponge full of the wine on a hyssop plant stalk and lifted it up to Jesus' mouth. After drinking some of the sour wine, Jesus said, "It is completed," [i.e., His work of dying for the sins of mankind] and gave up His spirit [i.e., to God. See Luke 23:46].


And when they [all] approached Jerusalem, and came close to Bethphage and Bethany, near the Mount of Olives [Note: These small villages were about two miles east of Jerusalem], He sent two of His disciples on ahead, saying to them, "Go into the village just ahead of you and, upon entering it, you will find tied up [there] a colt that no one has ever ridden; untie it and bring it here. And if anyone says to you, "Why are you doing this?" you should say, "The Lord needs it," and immediately he will send it back here. read more.
So, they went away and found a [donkey's] colt tied up at the gate, outside in the street, and untied it. Some bystanders said to them, "What are you doing, untying that colt?" But they answered him exactly what Jesus had told them to say, so the people let them go. Then they brought the colt to Jesus and spread their clothing on it and He mounted it. Many people spread their clothing on the roadway, while others spread leafy branches, which they had cut from the fields. And the people who walked ahead of Him and followed behind shouted, "Hosanna [Note: The Syriac word 'Hosanna' originally meant 'save now' but came to be used as an expression of welcome, praise, blessing or acclamation], may He who comes in the name [i.e., by the authority] of the Lord, be blessed. May the coming kingdom of our forefather David be blessed. Hosanna in the highest [i.e., may this blessing reach to the highest heaven]." Then Jesus entered the Temple in Jerusalem, and after looking around at everything [there], He left for Bethany with the twelve apostles, since it was evening by then. [Note: Jesus stayed overnight at Bethany during the week prior to His crucifixion. See verse 19].

And when they [i.e., Jesus and the twelve apostles] approached Jerusalem and came close to Bethphage, near the Mount of Olives [Note: This was about three-fourths of a mile east of Jerusalem], Jesus sent two disciples on ahead, saying to them, "Go into the village there and immediately you will find a donkey tied up with her colt. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says something to you, tell them, 'The Lord needs these animals,' and he will immediately send them. read more.
Now this will happen in order to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet, saying, [Zech. 9:9], 'You should tell the daughter of Zion [i.e., the people of Jerusalem], look, your King is coming to you. He is gentle and [will be] riding on a donkey, [even] on a colt, the offspring of the donkey.'" And the disciples went and did exactly what Jesus had ordered them to do. They brought the donkey and its colt and spread their clothing on them, and Jesus mounted the colt. A large part of the crowd spread their clothing on the roadway; others cut branches from trees and spread them [also] on the roadway. And the crowds that walked ahead and followed behind Him shouted, "Hosanna to the son of David. [Note: The Syriac word 'Hosanna' originally meant 'save now' but came to be used as an expression of welcome, praise, blessing or acclamation]. May He, who comes in the name [i.e., by the authority] of the Lord, be blessed. Hosanna in the highest [i.e., may this blessing reach to the highest heaven]." And when He had come to Jerusalem, the entire city was stirred up; they were asking, "Who is this man?" The crowds answered, "He is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee."

And it happened when Jesus got close to Bethphage and Bethany [Note: These were two small towns about two miles east of Jerusalem], at a hill called Olivet, that He sent two of His disciples, saying [to them], "Go into the village just ahead of you, and upon entering [it], you will find tied up [there] a colt that no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it [here]. And if anyone asks you, 'Why are you untying it?' you should say, 'The Lord needs it.'" read more.
So, those who were sent [i.e., Jesus' disciples], went away and found [things] just as Jesus had told them. And as they were untying the colt, its owners said to them, 'Why are you untying the colt?' And they replied, 'The Lord needs it.' So, they brought the colt to Jesus and spread their clothing on it, [then] placed Jesus on it [i.e., held the animal still as Jesus mounted it, since it had never been ridden before. See verse 30]. And as He rode [along], people spread their clothing on the roadway. Then, as He descended the Mount of Olives and got close to the city [i.e., Jerusalem], the entire crowd of disciples began joyfully praising God in loud voices because of all the powerful miracles they had seen [Him perform]. They were saying, 'May the King who comes in the name [i.e., by the authority] of the Lord, be blessed. May there be peace in heaven and praise [to God] in the highest [i.e., may this praise reach to the highest heaven].' But some of the Pharisees from the crowd said to Jesus, "Teacher, speak sternly to your disciples [i.e., to prevent them from honoring Jesus]." But He answered them, "I tell you, if these people remain quiet [about me], [then] the stones will shout [about it]." And when Jesus got close and saw the city [of Jerusalem], He cried over it, saying, "If [only] you people realized today those things which [could] lead [you] to peace! But now they are [being] hidden from your sight. For the days will come upon you when your enemies will build a dirt wall around you, surrounding you, and hemming you in on every side. They will throw you and your children, [who are] within your walls, to the ground and they will not allow one stone to remain on top of another in your city because you did not recognize that [God was] visiting you." [Note: This "visitation" refers either to the redemption which they had rejected or to the punishment of the siege and destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70].

On the next day a large crowd that had come [to Jerusalem] for the Passover Festival heard that Jesus [also] was coming to Jerusalem. [So], they took branches from palm trees and went out to meet Him, shouting, "Hosanna [Note: See Matt. 21:9 for the meaning of this word], may He, the King of Israel, be praised, for He comes in the name [i.e., by the authority] of the Lord!" Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, as it is written [Zech. 9:9], read more.
"Do not be afraid, daughter of Zion [i.e., people of Jerusalem]. Look, the King is coming [to you]; He [will be] riding on a donkey's colt." His disciples did not understand these things at first, but after Jesus received splendor [in heaven], then they remembered that these things had been written about Him [in Scripture] and that people had done such things to Him. The crowd of people that was with Jesus [and saw Him] when He called Lazarus out of the grave and raised him from the dead, gave testimony [about all this]. But the crowd that went out to meet Jesus [i.e., as He entered Jerusalem] did so because they had heard about Him performing this [miraculous] sign [i.e., of raising Lazarus]. So, the Pharisees were saying among themselves, "Look, you men are getting nowhere [in this situation]. See, the [whole] world has gone after him."


Now when Jesus heard about it He left there in a boat and went [across to the east side of the lake] to a deserted place. When the crowds found out [He was leaving] they followed Him [i.e., by traveling around] on the shore from the [surrounding] towns. When Jesus came out [of His place of seclusion] and saw a large crowd, He felt a deep compassion for them and healed their sick people. When it became evening, the disciples came to Him and said, "This place is deserted and it is getting late. Send the crowds away so they can go into the towns and buy food [for their supper]." read more.
But Jesus said to them, "They do not need to go away; you men give them [something] to eat." And they replied, "But we have here [only] five loaves of [barley] bread [See John 6:9] and two [probably smoked] fish." And He said, "Bring the bread and fish here to me." He ordered the crowds to recline on the grass. Then He took the five loaves of bread and two fish and, looking up to heaven, asked God's blessing on the food, broke it [in pieces], then gave it to the disciples to distribute to the crowds. They all ate until they were full, then gathered up twelve baskets full of the remaining broken pieces. Those eating numbered about five thousand men, in addition to the women and children.

Then the apostles got together with Jesus and told Him everything they had done and taught [on their mission]. He said to them, "You men, leave here and go to a deserted place and rest for awhile." For there were so many people coming and going [i.e., to listen to preaching, receive healing, etc.], that they had no opportunity even to eat. So, they [i.e., Jesus and His apostles] left by boat and went to a separate place [where they could be] alone. read more.
But the people saw them going and, since many recognized them, these people ran on ahead of them from all the [surrounding] towns. Then Jesus left [His place of seclusion] and, seeing the large crowd, He felt deep compassion for them because they were [as disoriented] as sheep without a shepherd, so He began teaching them. And when the day was nearly over His disciples came to Him and said, "This place is deserted and the day is almost over; send the crowd away so they can go into the surrounding countryside and towns to buy themselves something to eat." But He answered them, "You [men] give them something to eat." And they replied, "Should we go and buy a supply of bread to give them to eat?" [Note: The amount mentioned here indicates that it was two hundred days of a farm laborer's pay, or about $14,000 in 1994]. And He said to them, "How many loaves [of bread] do you have? Go and see." And when had found out, they said, "Five [barley] loaves [See John 6:9] and two [probably smoked] fish." And He ordered all of them to recline in groups on the green grass. So, they reclined in groups of fifty and one hundred. Then He took the five loaves of bread and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He asked God's blessing on them. Then He broke the loaves and gave them to His disciples to set in front of the people [to eat]. He divided the two fish among them also and they all ate until they were full. Then they gathered up twelve baskets full of broken pieces [of bread] and also some fish. The number eating the loaves of bread was five thousand men. [Note: This was besides women and children. See Matt. 14:21].

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]. 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. 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." read more.
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." 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." So, the disciples did this, and had all the people recline [on the grass in groups]. 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. They all ate until they were full, then gathered up twelve baskets [full] of the remaining broken pieces.

After these things happened Jesus went across to the east side of Lake Galilee, also called Lake Tiberias. [Note: This lake also bore a name honoring the Roman Emperor Tiberias]. And a large crowd followed Him because they had seen the [miraculous] signs He had performed on sick people. Then Jesus went up to a high plateau [Note: This place, northeast of Lake Galilee, is called "The Golan Heights," today] and sat down there with His disciples. read more.
Now the time for the Jewish Passover Festival was getting close. So Jesus, looking up and seeing a large crowd coming to Him, said to Philip [Note: He was one of the apostles, whose home town was at nearby Bethsaida. See 1:44], "Where are we going to buy [enough] bread, so that this crowd can eat?" Now He said this to test Philip, for He [already] knew what He was going to do. Philip answered Him, "Not even two hundred coins' worth of bread would be enough to feed them if everyone ate only a little bit." [Note: The amount here indicated was two hundred days of a farm laborer's pay, or about $14,000 in 1994]. [Then] one of His disciples, named Andrew, [who was] Simon Peter's brother, said to Him, "There is a little boy here who has five [small] loaves of barley bread and two [probably smoked] fish. But what is this amount for [feeding] so many people?" Jesus answered, "Have these people recline [on the ground]." Now there was a lot of grass in that place. So, the men, numbering about five thousand, reclined [on the grass]. Then Jesus took the loaves of bread, and [after] giving thanks [to God], He distributed [pieces] to those who were reclining. He did the same thing with the fish, [giving them] as much as they wanted. And when the people were [all] full, Jesus said to His disciples, "Gather up the broken pieces that are left over so that nothing is wasted." So, they gathered them up and filled twelve baskets with broken pieces left over from the five loaves of barley bread which they had eaten. So, when the people saw the [miraculous] sign that Jesus had performed [i.e., the feeding of the large crowd with such a small amount of food], they said, "Truly, this is the prophet who was to come into the world." [Note: This was probably a reference to the promise made in Deut. 18:15-19].


Now there had been a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord had descended from heaven and, [having] come to roll away the stone, was [now] sitting on it. He appeared as [brilliant] lightning and his clothing was white as snow. And the guards shook with fear at seeing him, and became as dead men. read more.
The angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know you are looking for Jesus, who has been crucified. He is not here, for He has risen just as He said [He would]. Come and see the place where the Lord had been lying, then go quickly and tell His disciples, 'He has risen from the dead and is [now] going on ahead of you into Galilee. You will see Him there.' Now [that is all] I have to tell you." So, they left the grave site quickly, with fear and great joy, and ran to give the message to His disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them and gave them greetings. They approached Him and took hold of His feet [and knelt] to worship Him. Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers [i.e., the disciples, that you have seen me], so they can head for Galilee where they will see me." Now while these women were on their way, some of the guards entered the city and began telling the leading priests everything that had happened. And when they had assembled with the [Jewish] elders and conferred with them, they offered large sums of money to the soldiers, saying, "We want you to say, 'Jesus' disciples came at night and stole his body while we were asleep.' And if the governor hears about this [plot], we will persuade him [i.e., not to punish you for negligence], so you will not have to worry about that." So, they took the money and did as they were instructed. And this story [i.e., that Jesus' body had been stolen by His disciples] was told widely among the Jews, and continues to be told to this day.

Now when the Sabbath day was over [i.e., after sunset on Saturday evening], Mary from Magdala; Mary the mother of James [i.e., the "other Mary" of Matt. 28:1, who was probably Jesus' mother. See Matt. 27:56]; and Salome [i.e., the mother of James and John and wife of Zebedee. See Matt. 27:56], bought spices [i.e., consisting of aloes and other aromatic perfumes] in order to apply them to His body [i.e., as a means of embalming]. And very early on the first day of the week, after sunrise [i.e., on Sunday morning], they went to the grave site. They were questioning among themselves, "Who will roll away the stone from the entrance of the cave for us?" read more.
And when they looked up, they saw that the stone had [already been] rolled away, and it was very large. As they were entering the cave, they were amazed when they saw a young man, dressed in a white robe, sitting at the right side of the entrance. He said to them, "Do not be amazed. You are looking for Jesus from Nazareth, who was crucified, [are you not]? He has risen from the dead. He is not here. Look at the place where they laid Him. So, go and tell His disciples and Peter, 'He is going on ahead of you to Galilee. You will see Him there, just as He told you.'" So, they left, running out of the cave, [and] trembling with amazement. And they said nothing to anyone about this for they were afraid. Now when Jesus arose from the dead early on the first day of the week [i.e., Sunday morning], He appeared first to Mary from Magdala, from whom He had driven out seven evil spirits. Then she went and told those disciples who had been with Him what had happened. They were sorrowful and began to cry. And when they heard that Jesus was alive and had been seen by Mary from Magdala, they refused to believe it.

Now at early dawn on the first day of the week [i.e., early Sunday morning], the women [See Mark 16:1] went to Jesus' grave site, taking the spices which they had prepared [for His burial]. But they found the stone [had already been] rolled away from the [opening of the] grave site. So, they went in [i.e., into the cave-like tomb], but did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. read more.
And it happened, while they wondered about the situation, suddenly two men in brilliant clothing [were seen] standing beside them. As the women became terrified and bowed down with their faces toward the ground [i.e., in reverence and awe], the two men said to them, "Why are you looking for the living [One] where they bury dead people? He is not here; for He has risen [from the dead]. [Do you not] remember what He told you when He was still in Galilee, saying, The Son of man must be turned over into the hands of sinful men to be crucified, but the third day [He will] rise again [from the dead]?'" Then they remembered what He had said to them. When they returned from the grave site, they told all this to the eleven apostles and to all the rest [of the disciples]. Now the women who told these things to the apostles were Mary from Magdala; Joanna [Note: This was the wife of Chuzas, Herod's property manager. See Luke 8:3], and other women who were with them. But these words seemed as nonsense to the apostles, and they refused to believe the women. {{Some ancient authorities do not include verse But Peter got up and ran to the grave site. He stooped down [i.e., because of the low opening in the cave-like tomb], looked in and saw the linen cloths [lying there] by themselves. Then he went home, puzzled over what had happened.}}

Now early [in the morning], while it was still dark on the first day of the week [i.e., Sunday], Mary from Magdala went to the [cave-like] tomb and saw the stone [had been] removed from [the entrance of] the tomb. So, she ran and came to Simon Peter and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved [i.e., probably the apostle John], and said to them, "They have taken the Lord out of the tomb and we do not know where they have put Him." So, Peter and the other disciple left [hurriedly] and went to the grave site. read more.
The two of them ran together, but the other disciple outran Peter and arrived at the grave site first. He stooped down and looked inside [the cave-like tomb] and saw the linen cloths lying there [i.e., these were wrappings used to hold embalming spices against the body], but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter, who had been following him, also arrived and went [straight] into the cave-like tomb and saw the linen cloths lying there. Now the cloth that had been around Jesus' head was not lying with the [other] linen cloths, but was rolled up by itself. Finally, the other disciple, who had arrived at the cave-like tomb first, went on into it. And [when] he saw [the grave clothes, but no body], he believed [in Jesus' resurrection]. But these disciples still did not understand the Scripture that [predicted] Jesus must rise again from the dead. So, the disciples went back home again, but Mary [from Magdala] was standing outside of the cave-like tomb crying. While she was [still] crying she stooped down to look in the tomb, and there she saw two angels [dressed] in white [clothing] sitting where Jesus' body had lain, one at His head and one at His feet. They said to Mary, "[My dear] woman, why are you crying?" She answered, "They have taken my Lord away, and I do not know where they have put Him." After she said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but did not know it was Him. [Then] Jesus said to her, "[My dear] woman, why are you crying? Who are you looking for?" Assuming He was the grounds keeper, she said to Him, "Sir, if you have carried Him away from here, tell me where you laid Him, and I will go and get Him." [Then] Jesus said to her, "Mary!" She turned toward Him and replied in the Hebrew language, "Rabboni," which means "Teacher." Jesus said to her, "Do not hold on to me, for I have not ascended to the Father yet [Note: Apparently Jesus was discouraging Mary from embracing Him in worship as was done in Matt. 28:9, and thereby causing a delay of when the rest of the disciples would learn of His resurrection], but go to my brothers and tell them [I said] 'I am [about] to ascend to my Father and to your Father, and to my God and your God.'" So, Mary from Magdala went and told the disciples, "I have seen the Lord," and that He had said these things to her. [See Matt. 28:7-10].



Then Jesus returned to Galilee with power from the Holy Spirit; and a report about Him spread through all the surrounding region.

Now after John was turned over [i.e., to the authorities and imprisoned] Jesus went [back] to Galilee preaching the good news from God

Two days later Jesus left Sychar and went to Galilee. For Jesus Himself testified that a prophet does not receive honor in his own country. [Note: Jesus' reference here to his "own country" means Judea, while in Matt., Mark and Luke it refers to Nazareth]. So, when He got to Galilee, the people there welcomed Him, for they had also gone to the [Passover] Festival in Jerusalem and had seen everything He had done there during the festival.


About that time Herod the tetrarch [Note: This man was the son of Herod the Great (See 2: and governor of that district] heard the report about what Jesus had been saying and doing. He told his servants, "This must be John, the Immerser; he has risen from the dead and [that explains how] these powers can work through him [i.e., Jesus]."

But when Herod's birthday came, Herodias' daughter [Note: According to Josephus her name was Salome], pleased him by [her sensual] dancing in front of the party guests. [Herod was so pleased with her performance that] he promised, with an oath, to give her whatever she asked for [i.e., with limitations. See Mark 6:23]. Her mother persuaded her to say, "Give me the head of John, the Immerser, here on this [large] platter." read more.
Now King Herod became very distressed [over such a gruesome request]; but because he had [promised with] oaths and [to look good in front of] his party guests, he ordered John's head to be given [to her]. So, he sent [word to his officers] and had John decapitated in the prison. His head was brought on a [large] platter and given to the young woman [i.e., Salome], and she took it to her mother [i.e., Herodias]. Jesus' disciples came and took the body and buried it; then they went and told Jesus [all about the incident].

Now King Herod heard about this [i.e., what Jesus was doing] because His name had become well known. He said, "John the Immerser has risen from the dead and it is his powers that are at work in Jesus." But others said, "He is [the prophet] Elijah" [while] others said, "He is a prophet like one of the prophets [of old]." But when King Herod heard [about Jesus], he said, "John, whom I [had] decapitated, has risen."

Then an ideal opportunity arose [i.e., for Herodias to do away with John] when Herod gave a dinner on his birthday for his influential friends, military commanders and the prominent officials of Galilee. And when Herodias' daughter [Note: According to Josephus her name was Salome] came in and danced [in front of them, sensually], she pleased Herod and his party guests so much that the king said to the young woman, "Ask me for whatever you want and I will give it to you." And he vowed to her, "I will give you whatever you ask me for, up to one half [the wealth] of my kingdom." read more.
So, she went out and said to her mother, "What shall I ask for?" And her mother said, " [Ask for] the head of John the Immerser." At once she hurried in to the king and said, "I would like you to give me the head of John the Immerser on a [large] platter right away." And the king became very distressed [over such a gruesome request], but because he had promised her with oaths, and [to keep from looking bad] in front of his party guests, he did not refuse her [request]. And immediately the king sent a soldier who served as his guard and ordered him to bring John's head to him. So, he went and decapitated him in the prison, and brought his head on a [large] platter and gave it to the young woman. She [in turn] gave it to her mother [Herodias]. And when John's disciples heard [what had happened] they took his body and buried it in a grave.

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; 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]. 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.


He answered, "The one who dipped his hand with me into the [sauce] bowl is the one who will turn me over [to the Jewish leaders].

But look, the hand of the one who is turning me over [i.e., to the Jewish leaders] is with me on the table [i.e., dipping his hand in the sauce bowl. See Matt. 26:23].

"I am not talking about all of you; for I know the ones I have chosen [i.e., which of the twelve apostles would be faithful]. But let the Scripture [Psa. 41:9] be fulfilled [that says], 'The person who eats with me has [viciously] turned against me.'

As they reclined at the table to eat, [Note: See Matt. 23:6] Jesus said, "Truly I tell you, one of you will turn me over [i.e., to the Jewish leaders]; [it is the one] who is eating with me." And they [all] began to be grieved and said to Him, one by one, "Am I the one?" And He answered them, "It is one of you twelve, [the one] who is dipping [his bread] with me in the sauce bowl. read more.
For the Son of man is going [to die], but it is too bad for that person who will turn me over to the Jewish leaders It would be better for that man if he had not been born."


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."

From that time onward Jesus began to explain to His disciples that He would have to go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the [Jewish] elders, leading priests, and experts in the law of Moses; [that He would then] be killed and [yet] raised up on the third day. Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, "I should say not, Lord; that will never happen to you." But Jesus turned to Peter and said, "Get away from me, Satan; you are causing a hindrance to me because you are not thinking about God's things but about men's." read more.
Then Jesus said to His disciples, "If anyone wants to be my follower, he should deny self [i.e., of always having its own way] and lift up his cross [of responsibility] and [then he can] become my follower. 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 [is willing to] lose his life [i.e., in commitment to God's service] for my sake will find it [i.e., obtain both temporal and spiritual blessings]. For what benefit is it to a person if he gains the whole world [of material things] but [has to] give up his life [i.e., all the spiritual blessings]? Or what should a person give in exchange for his life? For the Son of man will return in the splendor of His Father, accompanied by His angels. Then He will reward or punish every person in proportion to what he has done [with his life]. It is true when I tell you, some of those standing here will not die before they see the Son of man coming in His kingdom."

Jesus then began teaching them that the Son of man must suffer very much, be rejected by the [Jewish] elders, leading priests, and experts in the law of Moses and be killed, but rise again [from the dead] after three days. And He spoke about this freely. But Peter took Jesus aside and began rebuking Him [i.e., for saying such things]. But He turned around, and looking at His disciples, He rebuked Peter, saying to him, "Get away from me, Satan; for you are not thinking about God's things but about men's." read more.
And He called the crowd to Him, along with His disciples, and said to them, "If anyone wants to be my follower, he should deny himself [i.e., of always having his own way] and accept his cross [i.e., his responsibilities, with all their difficulties] and then he can become my follower. 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 [is willing] to lose his life [i.e., in commitment to God's service] for my sake and [the work of] the Gospel's sake, will save it [i.e., obtain both temporal and spiritual blessings]. For what would it benefit a person to gain the whole world [i.e., of material things] and give up his life [i.e., of spiritual blessings]? Or what should a person give in exchange for his life? For whoever will be ashamed of me and of my words in this [spiritually] unfaithful and sinful generation, the Son of man will also be ashamed of him when He returns in the splendor of His Father, accompanied by the holy angels."

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." 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. 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]. read more.
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]? 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. 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]."


Later on Jesus showed Himself to the eleven apostles as they sat [i.e., reclined. See Matt. 23:6], eating a meal. He scolded them for their lack of faith and stubbornness because they refused to believe those who had seen Him [alive] after His resurrection. Then He said to them, "You [men] go into the entire world and preach the good news to every person. The person who believes [i.e., the Gospel] and is immersed will be saved [i.e., from condemnation], but whoever does not believe it will be condemned. read more.
And these [miraculous] signs will attend [the conversion of] those who believe. [Note: This refers to the supernatural miracles performed by the apostles and their associates during the apostolic age. See verse they will pick up snakes [i.e., without being harmed]; and if they happen to drink anything poisonous, it will not harm them; they will place hands on sick people [i.e., with prayer] and they will be healed."

And as the apostles were talking about these things, Jesus Himself [reappeared], standing among them, and said to them, "May there be peace in your lives." But they became frightened and [even] terrified, and assumed they were seeing a spirit. Then Jesus said to them, "Why are you [so] upset? And why are you having doubts [about me] in your minds? read more.
Look at my hands and my feet and realize that it is I, myself. Feel me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones, as you see that I have." {{Some ancient authorities omit verse And when He had said this, He showed them His hands and His feet.}} And while they still could not believe [i.e., or, could hardly believe], out of joy and wonderment, Jesus said to them, "Do you have anything here to eat?" So, they gave Him a piece of broiled fish. And He took it and ate it in front of them. Then Jesus said to the apostles, "These are the words that I told you while I was still with you, [when I said] that everything written in the law of Moses, and the prophets, and the psalms about me needed to be fulfilled." Then He opened their minds [miraculously ?] so they would understand the Scriptures. And He said to them, "This is what was written: The Christ [i.e., God's specially chosen one] will suffer, and [then] rise again from the dead on the third day. And [the need for] a change of heart and life in order to receive the forgiveness of sins [from God] will be preached in Jesus' name [i.e., by His authority] to people of all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You apostles are [to be] witnesses of these things [i.e., they were to give their testimony of these truths. See Acts 1:8]. And look, I [am going to] send upon you apostles what my Father promised [i.e., the Holy Spirit. See John 14:26]; but you should wait in the city [of Jerusalem] until you are clothed with power from above." [Note: This promise was fulfilled when the apostles were immersed in the Holy Spirit. See Acts 1:4 - 2:4].

So, when it was evening on that day, [which was] the first day of the week [i.e., Sunday] and the doors [of someone's house], where the disciples were gathered, were closed [i.e., probably locked] for fear of the Jewish authorities, Jesus came and stood among them. [Note: Probably Jesus passed through the closed door miraculously]. He said to them, "May there be peace in your hearts." After saying this, Jesus showed them His hands and His side, so they rejoiced when they saw the Lord [i.e., now convinced that He had indeed risen from the dead]. Jesus said to them again, "May there be peace in your hearts. Just as the Father has sent me, so I am sending you." read more.
Upon saying this, Jesus breathed on the disciples and said to them, "[Be willing to] receive the Holy Spirit." [Note: This "breathing" served as a pledge of the Holy Spirit which actually came on these apostles a few weeks later. See Acts 1:5-8; 2:4]. Whosever sins you forgive, they will be forgiven [by God]. And whosever sins you do not forgive, they will not be forgiven [by God]." [Note: Actual forgiveness would result only when people responded, by faith, to the Gospel message. See Acts 2:37-38].


Then the Pharisees conspired as to how they could trap Jesus by what He said. So, they sent their disciples, [along] with the Herodians to Him [Note: These were members of a political party favoring King Herod], saying, "Teacher, we know that you are sincere, and that you teach the truth about God's way. You do not care for [i.e., do not fear or give in to] anyone or allow the position of any person to influence you. So, tell us what you think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?" read more.
But Jesus perceived their wicked intention and said, "Why are you putting me to a test, you hypocrites? Show me the coin used for paying taxes." And they brought to Him a coin [Note: This coin was equivalent to one day of a farm laborer's pay, or about $60-$84 in 1994]. He said to them, "Whose image and inscription are on this coin?" They answered Him, "Caesar's." Then He replied, "Pay to Caesar whatever belongs to Caesar and pay to God whatever belongs to God." And when they heard this, they marveled; then left Him and went away.

Then the Pharisees sent certain ones of their number [See Matt. 22:15-16] along with the Herodians [Note: This refers to members of a political party favoring King Herod] to attempt to trap Him by what He said. And when they arrived, they said to Him, "Teacher, we know that you are sincere, and [that you] do not care for [i.e., do not fear or give in to] anyone. For you do not allow [the position of] any person to influence you, but teach the truth about God's way. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not? Should we pay it, or should we not pay it?" But Jesus was aware of their hypocrisy and said to them, "Bring me the coin so I can see it." [Note: The amount of this coin was equivalent to one day of a farm laborer's pay, or about $60-$84 in 1994]. read more.
So, they brought it to Him and He said to them, "Whose image and inscription [are on this coin]?" And they answered Him, "Caesar's." Then Jesus replied to them, "Pay to Caesar whatever belongs to Caesar and pay to God whatever belongs to God." And they greatly marveled at Him.

And they kept watching Him, [even] sending informants who pretended to be good [men], in order to get hold of something He said so they could turn Him over to the ruling authority of the governor. And they asked Him, "Teacher, we know that you speak and teach correctly and that you do not show partiality to anyone, but [rather] teach the truth about God's way. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?" read more.
But Jesus perceived their trickery, and said to them, "Show me the coin [used for paying the taxes]. [Note: This coin was equivalent to one day of a farm laborer's pay, or about $60-$84 in 1994]. Whose image and inscription are on this coin?" And they answered Him, "Caesar's." He replied, "Then pay to Caesar the things that belong to Caesar and pay to God the things that belong to God." And they were not able to get hold of anything Jesus said in front of the people. And they marveled at His answer and did not say anything [further].


Then a rich, young man [See verse 22] came to Him and said, "Teacher, what good deed should I do in order to have never ending life?" Jesus answered him, "Why do you ask me about what is good? There is [only] One who is good [i.e., God]. But if you want to enter [never ending] life, [then] obey His commandments." The young man asked Him, "Which [ones]?" Jesus answered, "You must not murder. You must not be sexually unfaithful to your mate. You must not steal. You must not give false testimony. read more.
Show honor to your father and mother. And you must love your neighbor the same as you love yourself." The young man said to Him, "I have [already] been observing all of these commandments. What do I [still] lack?" Jesus replied, "If you want to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give [the money] to poor people; then become my follower and you will have treasure in heaven." But when the young man heard these words, he went away saddened, for he had many possessions.

As Jesus was leaving to go on His way, a man ran to Him and kneeled down in front of Him and asked, "Good Teacher, what should I do in order to possess never ending life?" Jesus answered him, "Why are you calling me good? Nobody is good except One, that is, God. miles northeast of Jerusalem]. As He left there with His disciples and a large crowd, they met a blind beggar named Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sitting along side the road. read more.
You know the commandments: Do not murder. Do not be sexually unfaithful to your mate. Do not steal. Do not give false testimony. Do not cheat. Show honor to your father and mother." And he replied, "Teacher, I have [already] been observing all these commandments since I was a young lad." And Jesus looked at him, and filled with love, said to him, "There is one thing you [still] lack. Go and sell your possessions and give [the money] to poor people; become my follower, then you will have treasure in heaven." But the man had a sad look on his face when he heard these words, and went away sorrowful, for he had many possessions.

Then a certain ruler [Note: This man was young and rich. See Matt. 19:16-22] asked Jesus, "Good Teacher, what should I do in order to inherit never ending life?" Jesus answered him, "Why do you call me 'good'? No one is good except God only. You know the commandments: Do not be sexually unfaithful to your mate. Do not murder. Do not steal. Do not give false testimony. Show honor to your father and mother." read more.
And the ruler replied, "I have [already] been observing all of these commandments since I was [very] young." When Jesus heard this He said to him, " [There is] one thing you still lack. Sell all your possessions and distribute [the money] to poor people; become my follower, [then] you will have treasure in heaven." But when the ruler heard these words, he became very sad for he was extremely rich. Now Jesus looked at him and said, "How difficult [it is] for those who are wealthy to enter the kingdom of God!


Some Sadducees [Note: These were the Jewish party that denied there was a resurrection] came to Jesus that day and asked Him, "Teacher, Moses said [in Deut. 25:5] that when a man dies without having had any children, his brother must marry his widow and father children by her, who would [then] be considered his [dead] brother's. Now among our people there were [these] seven brothers; the first one married and [later] died without having any children, leaving his widow to [marry] his brother. read more.
The same thing happened to the second and the third and [on through to] the seventh [brother]. And after they all died, the woman [also] passed away. Now whose wife will she be in the resurrected state, since all seven of them were married to her?" But Jesus answered them, "You are mistaken [in your reasoning], not knowing [what] the Scriptures [teach] or [how much] power God has. For in the resurrected state men do not get married, nor are women given away in marriage, but [all] are like angels in heaven. But concerning the resurrection of the dead, have you not read what God spoke to you, saying, [Ex. 3:6] I am Abraham's God, and Isaac's God and Jacob's God.' [So], He is not God to those who are [physically] dead, but [He is] God to those who are [still] alive." And when the crowds heard this they were astounded at His teaching.

or, to the people (See Luke 20:9)] by using parables. He said, "A man planted a vineyard and built a fence around it. He dug a place for constructing a grape squeezing device, built a [lookout] tower [near it], then leased it out to tenant farmers and went to another country. Then some Sadducees, [the ones] who say there is no resurrection [of the dead], came and asked Him, "Teacher, Moses wrote to us [Deut. 25:5] that if a man's brother dies, leaving his widow behind without having had any children, his brother should marry his widow and father children by her. These children would then be considered his [dead] brother's. read more.
[Now] there were [these] seven brothers; the first one got married, but when he died he left no children behind. So, the second one married his widow, and at his death he too left no children behind. Then the third one did the same thing. All seven left no children [behind when they died]. Finally, the woman also passed away. [Now] whose wife will she be in the resurrected state, for all seven [brothers] were married to her?" Jesus said to them, "Is not this the reason that you are [so] mistaken, that you do not know [what] the Scriptures [teach] or [how much] power God has? For when people rise from the dead, men do not get married, and women are not given away in marriage, but [all] are like angels in heaven. But concerning those who are raised from the dead, have you never read in the book of Moses, in the incident about the bush, how God spoke to him, saying [Ex. 3:6], 'I am Abraham's God, and Isaac's God, and Jacob's God?' [So], He is not God to those who are dead, but [He is] God to those who are alive. You are seriously mistaken."

[Then] certain Sadducees came to Jesus (they are the ones who say there is no resurrection [of the dead]). They said to Him, "Teacher, Moses wrote to us [Deut 25:5] that if a man's brother dies, leaving his widow [behind] without having had any children, his brother should marry his widow and father children [by her]. These children would then be considered his [dead] brother's. [Now] there were these seven brothers; the first one got married, but when he died he did not leave any children behind. read more.
Then the second one did the same thing. Then the third one married the [surviving] widow [of the first two brothers]. And in the same way, all seven [brothers] married her, but left no children [behind when they died]. Finally, the woman also passed away. [Now] whose wife will she be in the resurrected state, for all seven [brothers] were married to her?" And Jesus said to them, "The people of this age [i.e., who live on earth] marry and are given away in marriage, but those who are considered worthy of gaining that age [i.e., the future, never ending state] and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry nor are given away in marriage. For they cannot die anymore either, because they are equal to the angels and are children of God, as well as children of the resurrection [i.e., people who are assured of being resurrected]. But even Moses showed that dead people would be raised in the incident about the bush [Ex. 3:6], where he called the Lord, 'Abraham's God, and Isaac's God, and Jacob's God.' So, He is not God to those who are dead, but [He is] God to those who are alive, for to God, all people are alive." Then certain experts in the law of Moses replied to Jesus, "Teacher, you have spoken well." For they did not dare ask Him any more questions.


Now Jesus and His disciples were [traveling] along the road, going up to Jerusalem, with Jesus moving on ahead of the others. The disciples were amazed and they followed [behind Him] fearfully. [Note: From the context, it appears their amazement was due to His eagerness to enter Jerusalem in spite of the imminent danger they felt awaited Him there]. He took the twelve apostles aside and began telling them about the things that were going to happen to Him. He said, "Look, we are going up to Jerusalem and the Son of man will be turned over to the leading priests and experts in the law of Moses. They will condemn Him to death and turn Him over to the [unconverted] Gentiles. They will mock Him, and spit on Him, and whip Him and [finally] kill Him, but after three days He will rise again [from the dead]."

As Jesus was going up to Jerusalem He took the twelve apostles aside. As they traveled along He said to them, "Now look, we are going up to Jerusalem and [while there] the Son of man will be turned over to the leading priests and experts in the law of Moses. They will condemn Him to death, and turn Him over to the [unconverted] Gentiles, who will mock, whip and crucify Him; then on the third day He will be raised up."

Then Jesus took the twelve apostles with Him, saying to them, "Look, we are going up to Jerusalem and [while there] everything written in [the writings of] the prophets will be fulfilled concerning the Son of man. For He will be turned over to the [unconverted] Gentiles, and will be mocked, and insulted and spit on. [The Romans] will flog Him and kill Him, but on the third day He will rise again [from the dead]." read more.
But His disciples did not understand [what He meant by] any of these things, for this message was hidden from them so they did not comprehend what He was saying.


Then some [parents] were bringing [their] little children to Jesus so He could touch them [i.e., to bestow a blessing on them], but His disciples spoke harshly to these parents [for doing this]. But when Jesus saw it, He was moved with [righteous] indignation, and said to them, "Allow these little children to come to me and stop trying to prevent them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such [humble ones. See Matt. 18:4]. Truly I tell you, whoever does not welcome the kingdom of God as a little child does, that person will by no means enter it." read more.
Then He lifted up the children into His arms, and placing His hands on them, He asked God's blessing on them.

Then some little children were brought to Jesus so he could pray and place His hands on them [i.e., to bestow a blessing on them]. But His disciples spoke harshly to the people [for doing this]. But Jesus said, "Allow these little children to come to me and stop trying to prevent them. For the kingdom of heaven belongs to such [humble ones] as these." [See 18:4]. So, He placed His hands on them [i.e., to bestow a blessing] and [then] left that place.

People were bringing babies to Jesus so He could touch them [i.e., to bestow a blessing on them], but when His disciples saw this, they spoke harshly to these people. But Jesus called His disciples to Him and said, "Allow these little children to come to me and stop trying to prevent them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these [i.e., humble ones. See Matt. 19:14]. Truly I tell you, whoever does not welcome the kingdom of God the way a little child does, that person will by no means enter it."


As they [i.e., the twelve apostles and Jesus] were leaving Jericho [Note: This was a town about eighteen miles northeast of Jerusalem], a huge crowd followed them. Just then, two blind men sitting along side of the road heard that Jesus was passing by that way. [So], they shouted out, "Lord, take pity on us, son of David." The crowd spoke harshly to them, telling them to be quiet, but they shouted all the more, "Lord, have pity on us, son of David." read more.
Then Jesus stopped, and calling to them, said, "What do you want me to do for you?" They answered, "Lord, we want to have our sight back." Jesus felt deep pity for them, so He touched their eyes and immediately their sight was restored, and they became [His] followers.

And it happened as Jesus was approaching Jericho [Note: This was a town about eighteen miles northeast of Jerusalem], that a certain blind man was [seen] sitting along side of the road, begging. As he heard a crowd of people passing by, he asked [someone] what was happening. And he was told that Jesus from Nazareth was passing by [that way]. read more.
So, he shouted out, "Jesus, you son of David, take pity on me." But those walking in front [of Jesus] spoke harshly to the blind beggar, telling him to be quiet. But he continued shouting all the more, "You son of David, take pity on me." So, Jesus stopped and ordered the beggar to be brought to Him. And when he came near, Jesus asked him, "What do you want me to do for you?" And he replied, "Lord, I want to receive my sight." And Jesus said to him, "Receive your sight, your faith has made you well." And immediately his sight was restored and he followed Jesus, giving honor to God. And when all the people saw this, they [too] praised God.

Then they [i.e., Jesus and the twelve apostles] came to Jericho [Note: This was a town about When he heard that it was Jesus from Nazareth [passing by], he began shouting, "Jesus, son of David, have pity on me." Many people spoke harshly to the blind man, telling him to be quiet. But he shouted all the more [loudly], "Son of David, have pity on me." read more.
So, Jesus stopped and said, "Call that man [to me]." Then the crowd called the blind man, saying to him, "Cheer up, Jesus is calling you." So, he threw off his robe, jumped up, and [immediately] went to Jesus.


Now on the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread [i.e., the first day of Passover week], His disciples came to Jesus, saying, "Where do you want us to make preparations for you to eat the Passover meal?" He answered, "Go into the city [i.e., Jerusalem] to a certain man and say to him, 'The Teacher says, My time is near [i.e., to be turned over to the Jewish leaders]; I plan to observe the Passover Festival at your house with my disciples.'" And the disciples did [just] as Jesus had asked them, and they made preparations for the Passover meal. read more.
Now when evening came, Jesus was reclining at the dinner table with His twelve apostles. As they were eating, He said, "Truly I tell you, one of you will turn me over [to the Jewish leaders]." And they were extremely grieved, and each one of them began saying to Him, "Am I the one, Lord?" He answered, "The one who dipped his hand with me into the [sauce] bowl is the one who will turn me over [to the Jewish leaders]. The Son of man is going [to die], but it is too bad for that person through whom the Son of man is turned over [to the Jewish leaders]! It would be better for that man if he had not been born." Then Judas, the one who betrayed Him asked, "Am I the one, Rabbi?" Jesus answered Him, "You have said so." And as they were eating, Jesus took a [small] loaf of bread, asked God's blessing on it, then broke it and gave pieces to His disciples and said, "Take some and eat it; this is [i.e., represents] my [physical] body." And He took a cup [i.e., probably wine made from fresh or possibly preserved grape juice], gave thanks to God, then passed it to them, saying, "All of you, drink from it; for this is [i.e., represents] my blood of the Agreement [i.e., between God and mankind], which is [to be] poured out for many people in order for [their] sins to be forgiven. But I tell you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine [i.e., grape juice] from now on until that day when I will drink it again with you [i.e., figuratively] in my Father's kingdom." And after they had sung a hymn, they went up to the Mount of Olives. [Note: This was a small hill just east of Jerusalem]

Now on the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread [i.e., the beginning of the Passover Festival week], when they sacrificed the Passover [lamb], Jesus' disciples said to Him, "Where do you want us to go to make preparations for you to eat the Passover meal?" So, He sent two of His disciples, saying to them, "Go into the city [of Jerusalem] and there a man carrying a pitcher of water will meet you; follow him. And wherever he enters a house [follow him inside and] say to the owner, 'The Teacher says, where is my guest room where I can eat the Passover meal with my disciples?' read more.
And the owner himself will show you a large upstairs room all furnished and ready. Make preparations for us there [i.e., to observe the Passover meal]." So, the disciples left and entered the city [of Jerusalem]. They found everything just as Jesus told them [it would be], and they made preparations for the Passover meal. When evening came, Jesus arrived [at the upstairs room] with the twelve apostles. As they reclined at the table to eat, [Note: See Matt. 23:6] Jesus said, "Truly I tell you, one of you will turn me over [i.e., to the Jewish leaders]; [it is the one] who is eating with me." And they [all] began to be grieved and said to Him, one by one, "Am I the one?" And He answered them, "It is one of you twelve, [the one] who is dipping [his bread] with me in the sauce bowl. For the Son of man is going [to die], but it is too bad for that person who will turn me over to the Jewish leaders It would be better for that man if he had not been born." And as they were eating He took a [small] loaf of bread, and when He had asked God's blessing on it, He broke it and gave [pieces] to His disciples and said, "Take this, it is [i.e., represents] my [physical] body." Then He took a cup [i.e., probably wine made from fresh or possibly preserved grape juice], and when He had given thanks to God, He passed it to them and they all drank from it. And He said to them, "This is [i.e., represents] my blood of the Agreement [i.e., between God and mankind] which is [to be] poured out for many people. Truly I tell you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine [i.e., grape juice] any more until that day when I will drink it again [i.e., figuratively] in the kingdom of God."

Then the day came for the Festival of Unleavened Bread [to be held], on which the Passover [lamb] was to be sacrificed. So, Jesus sent Peter and John [to Jerusalem], saying, "Go and prepare for us to eat the Passover [meal]." And they said to Him, "Where do you want us to prepare [for it]?" read more.
And He replied to them, "Look, when you have entered the city, a man carrying a pitcher of water will meet you; follow him into whatever house he goes. Then you should say to the owner of the house, 'The Teacher says to you, where is the guest room where I can eat the Passover meal with my disciples?' And he will show you a large, completely furnished upstairs room. Make preparations [for us] there [i.e., to observe the Passover Festival]." So, they went and found [everything] just as Jesus told them [it would be], and they prepared for the Passover meal. And when the time came [for the Passover meal], Jesus reclined with His apostles [at the table]. [Note: See Matt. 23:6]. And He said to them, "I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover meal with you [men] before I suffer [i.e., torture and death]. For I tell you, I will not eat it again until [I do so when] it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God [See Matt. 26:29]." Then Jesus took a cup [Note: This was one of the cups partaken of during the Passover meal], and after giving thanks to God [for it], He said, "Take this and share it among yourselves, for I tell you, I will not drink this fruit of the vine [i.e., grape juice] from now on until [I do, figuratively, when] the kingdom of God has come." Then He took a [small] loaf of bread, and after He had given thanks to God, He broke it and gave [pieces] to His apostles, and said, "This is [i.e., represents] my [physical] body which is [to be] given for you; continue to do this [i.e., eat it regularly] to remember me by." And in the same way He took [another] cup, after the [Passover] meal, and said, "This cup is [i.e., represents] the New Agreement [i.e., between God and mankind] made by my blood, which is [to be] poured out for you.


Then a person dominated by an evil spirit, who was [also] blind and mute, was brought to Jesus. He healed the man so that he was able [both] to speak and see [again]. All the crowds of people were amazed and said, "Can this [Jesus] be the son of David?" But when the Pharisees heard this, they said, "This man does not drive out evil spirits except by [the power of] Beelzebub, the chief of evil spirits." read more.
Knowing their thoughts Jesus said to them, "Every kingdom [plagued] with internal division will end in ruin. And every city or household divided from within will not survive. If Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself, [so] how then can his kingdom stand? And if I drive out evil spirits by [the power of] Beelzebub, by whom do they [i.e., your people] drive them out? So, they become your judges. But if I drive out evil spirits by [the power of] the Holy Spirit, then [that is evidence that] the kingdom of God has come into your midst [i.e., by my presence and ministry]. Or, how can someone enter a strong man's house and steal his belongings unless he first ties up the strong man? Only then will he be able to steal [his belongings] from his house. The person who is not on my side is [actually] against me. And the person who does not gather [people to me] is [actually] driving them away [from me]. Therefore I tell you, people will be forgiven of every sin and abusive word spoken [against God]. But abusive words spoken against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. And whoever speaks an [abusive] word against the Son of man will be forgiven [of it], but whoever speaks [an abusive word] against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven [of it], not in this world nor the one to come. Either be a healthy tree and produce wholesome fruit, or be a diseased tree and produce rotten fruit, for [the quality of] a tree will be recognized by [the quality of] its fruit. You children of snakes! Since you are evil, how do you expect to speak good things? For the mouth speaks what the heart is filled with. The good person produces good things from his storehouse of goodness. But the evil person produces bad things from his storehouse of evil. And I say to you, a person will [have to] give an account [to God] on the day of judgment for every careless word he had spoken [while on earth]. For you will be considered righteous by the words [you speak] and you will be condemned by the words [you speak]."

and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed Him. Then Jesus went into a house. Soon a crowd assembled again so that they could not even eat a meal [i.e., without people crowding all around them]. When His relatives [or friends] heard about this [i.e., all that He was doing], they went out to take custody of Him [for safety reasons?], for people were saying, "He has lost his mind." read more.
And the experts in the law of Moses who had come down from Jerusalem were saying [Note: This followed the incident of Jesus healing a man with an evil spirit. See Matt. 12:22-28], "He has Beelzebub [in him]," and "He is driving out evil spirits by [the power of] the chief of evil spirits." And He called them to Him and began speaking to them in parables [i.e., brief stories to illustrate His teaching], saying, "How can Satan drive out Satan? And if a kingdom is plagued by internal division, it will never survive. And if a household is divided [by strife] within, that household will never last. And if Satan has risen up against himself, and is divided [i.e., in aim and purpose] he cannot survive, and his end has come. But no one can enter a strong man's house and steal his belongings unless he first ties up the strong man. Only then will he be able to steal from his house. Truly I tell you, all of mankind's sins and the abusive language that they use in speaking against God [and men] can be forgiven. But the person who speaks against the Holy Spirit can never be forgiven, for he is guilty of a never ending sin." Jesus said all this because these experts in the law of Moses had been saying, "He has an evil spirit in him."

[Once] Jesus was driving out an evil spirit from a [man who was] mute. And it happened when the evil spirit left [him] that the [former] mute began to speak. And the crowds were amazed. But some of the people said, "He is driving out evil spirits by [the power of] Beelzebub, the chief of evil spirits." Then others, trying to test Him, asked Him to perform a [supernatural] sign from heaven. read more.
But, knowing their thoughts, Jesus said to them, "Every kingdom [plagued] with internal division will end in ruin. And a household divided from within will fall. And if Satan also is divided against himself, how [then] can his kingdom stand? I tell you this because you are saying that I drove out evil spirits by [the power of] Beelzebub. But, if I drive out evil spirits by [the power of] Beelzebub, by whom do your followers drive them out? So, they will be your judges. But, if I drive out evil spirits by the finger of God [i.e., by God's direct, supernatural intervention], then [that is evidence that] the kingdom of God has come into your midst [i.e., by my presence and ministry]. When a fully armed strong man guards his own courtyard [i.e., homestead], his possessions are safe. But when someone stronger than he attacks him and overpowers him, he takes away all the armament the strong man relied on, and [then] divides up his storehouse of possessions. [Note: The word here translated "possessions" may be translated "arms" so the meaning could be "divides up his armament"]. The person who is not on my side is [actually] against me. And the person who does not gather [people to me] is [actually] driving them away [from me]. "When an evil spirit has been driven out of a man, it roams through desert regions trying to find rest, but [when it] cannot find any, it says [to itself], 'I will return to my house from which I came [i.e., the body of the person it dominated].' But when it returns [to that body] it finds it cleaned out and [newly] decorated. Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits, more evil than itself, and they reenter [the body] and [begin] to live there, so that the latter state of that person becomes worse than the former state."


Then immediately Jesus ordered the disciples to enter the boat and row on ahead of Him to the other side [i.e., to the west side of Lake Galilee] until He could send the crowds away. After He had dispersed them, He went up into the mountain by Himself to pray. When evening had come He was there alone. [Meanwhile] the boat, still some distance from shore, was being severely battered by the waves because of the opposing winds. read more.
Then between three and six o'clock in the morning Jesus came walking to them on the [surface of the] lake. When the disciples saw Him walking on the water they became frightened, saying, "It is a spirit!" and cried out with fear. Just then Jesus called out to them, "Take courage and do not be afraid; it is I." Peter answered Him, "Lord, if it is [really] you, ask me to come to you [walking] on the water." And Jesus replied, "Come [ahead]." So, Peter climbed over the side of the boat and went to Jesus, walking on the water. But when he saw the [furious] wind he became fearful and began to sink, shouting out, "Lord, save me!" And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him and said, "You have such little faith; why did you doubt?" And when they [i.e., both Jesus and Peter] got up into the boat, the wind [immediately] stopped. Then the disciples in the boat worshiped Jesus, saying, "Truly you are the Son of God." And when they had [finally] crossed over [i.e., to the west side of the lake], they landed at the region of Gennesaret. When the people there recognized Jesus, they sent to all the surrounding regions and had all who were sick brought to Him. They begged Him that they might only touch the edge of His robe. And all those who got to touch it were made well.

And about then Jesus compelled His disciples to get into a boat and go on ahead of Him to the other side [i.e., to the west side of Lake Galilee] to Bethsaida [Note: This was apparently a different "Bethsaida" from the one mentioned in Luke 9:10, which was on the east side of Lake Galilee], while He Himself sent the crowd away. And after He had left them He went into a mountain to pray. When evening came the boat [containing His disciples] was in the middle of the lake while He remained alone on the shore. read more.
When He saw how distressed His disciples were, rowing against an opposing wind, Jesus came to them between three and six o'clock in the morning, walking on the water, and almost walked past them. But when they saw Him walking on the water they thought it was a spirit, so shouted out, becoming [very] frightened when they saw Him. But He immediately spoke to them and said, "Take courage, and do not be afraid, it is I." Then He got up into the boat with them and the wind [immediately] stopped. And His disciples were greatly amazed [at this], but they did not understand [the miracle] of the loaves because their minds were insensitive [i.e., to the nature and power of Jesus]. And when they had [finally] crossed over [i.e., to the west side of Lake Galilee], they arrived in the district of Gennesaret and moored the boat on shore. As soon as they got out of the boat the people recognized Jesus and rushed around the whole district to bring sick people on cots to where He was. And wherever He entered towns, cities or the countryside, they placed sick people at the open shopping markets and begged Him to allow them to touch even the edge of His robe. And all those who touched Him were made well.

So, [when] Jesus knew that the people were about to come and forcibly take Him and make Him [their] king, He left there again and went to the high plateau [to be] alone [i.e., to pray. See Mark 6:46]. Then when evening came, His disciples went down to the lake and got into their boat, and were crossing over [i.e., to the west side of] the lake toward Capernaum. It was dark by now and Jesus had not yet come to them. read more.
Then the water became choppy because of a strong wind that had begun to blow. And when the disciples had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus walking on the [surface of the] water. They became afraid as Jesus got closer to their boat. But He said to them, "Do not be afraid; it is I." So, they eagerly took Him into their boat, and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading [i.e., to Capernaum, on the northwest side of the lake].


Then Jesus returned to Galilee with power from the Holy Spirit; and a report about Him spread through all the surrounding region.

Now after John was turned over [i.e., to the authorities and imprisoned] Jesus went [back] to Galilee preaching the good news from God

Now when Jesus heard that John had been arrested, He left [the province of Judea] and went to Galilee.

Therefore, when the Lord [Jesus] knew that the Pharisees were aware of Him making and immersing more disciples than John, PM, if Jewish time were meant]. (OMITTED TEXT) read more.
He left Judea and returned to Galilee. (Although it was actually His disciples who did the immersing and not Jesus Himself).


And while the disciples were staying in Galilee, Jesus said to them, "The Son of man will be handed over to [evil] men and they will kill Him, but on the third day He will be raised up [from the dead]." And they were very grieved [when they heard this].

So, they left there and traveled through Galilee, but Jesus did not want anyone to know about it. 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." But His disciples did not understand what He meant and were afraid to ask Him.

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, "Pay close attention to what I am saying, for the Son of man will be handed over to [evil] men." 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.


When Jesus and His disciples met the crowd [that was gathered], a man came kneeling down to Jesus and saying to Him, "Lord, take pity on my son, for he has violent seizures and suffers intense pain. He often falls into a fire or into water. [Note: This man was also dominated by an evil spirit. See verse 18]. I brought him to [some of] your disciples [for help] but they were not able to heal him." read more.
Jesus replied [to the crowd], "You perverse 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." Then Jesus spoke sternly to [the evil spirit in] the boy, and it left him, and he was immediately healed. Then Jesus' disciples came to Him privately and said, "Why could we not drive out that evil spirit?" He answered them, "[It was] because you had such little faith. For truly I tell you, if you have faith as [small as] a mustard tree seed, you could say to this mountain, 'Move from here to that place over there' and it would move. And nothing will be impossible for you [to do]." {[{[Some manuscripts contain the following verse: But this kind [of spirit] can not be driven out except by praying and fasting.]}]}

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. And immediately, upon seeing Jesus, the entire crowd ran to greet Him in great amazement [i.e., possibly over His sudden appearance]. And He asked the crowd, "What are you arguing about with my disciples?" read more.
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. 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." 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." 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. Jesus asked the boy's father, "How long has this been happening to him?" And he answered, "Since he was a small child. 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." 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]." Immediately the father of the boy cried out, "I do believe; help me to have more faith." 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." 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." But Jesus grasped his hand and lifted him up, and he arose [fully healed]. 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]?" He answered them, "This kind [of spirit] cannot be driven out except by praying."

And it happened on the next day, when they had come down from the mountain, that a large crowd met Jesus. 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. 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. read more.
And I begged your disciples to drive it out, but they could not." 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." 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. 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,


So then, after the Lord Jesus had spoken to them He was taken up to heaven, where He sat down at the right side of God. and Acts 2:43]. In my name [i.e., by my authority], they will drive out evil spirits; they will speak in languages [supernaturally]; And the apostles [See verses 14-15] went out and preached everywhere. The Lord worked with them and confirmed the message [i.e., verified that it was true] by means of the [miraculous] signs which accompanied their ministry. May it be so.

Then Jesus led His apostles out [of Jerusalem] until they came near to Bethany [Note: This was a village fewer than two miles east of Jerusalem]. [There] He raised His hands and asked God's blessing on them. And it happened, as He was blessing them, that He left them and was taken up to heaven. And the apostles worshiped Jesus, then returned to Jerusalem with great joy. read more.
And they were there in the Temple [area] continually praising God [i.e., for the next ten days. See Acts 2].

And when Jesus had said these things, just as the apostles were watching [Him], He was taken up by a cloud [and disappeared] out of their sight. And while they gazed up into the sky as He ascended, suddenly two men wearing white clothing appeared beside them and said, "You men from Galilee, why are you standing there looking up at the sky? This Jesus who was received up from your presence into the sky will return in the same way you saw Him go there." read more.
Then the apostles returned to Jerusalem from the place called "Mount of Olives," which was about three-fourths of a mile from Jerusalem.


Jesus began speaking to them [i.e., to the leading priests and experts in the law of Moses (See 11: And when the [grape harvest] season came, the owner of the farm sent a slave to the tenant farmers asking them to deliver the grape crop [to him]. But they took the slave and beat him and sent him away empty handed. read more.
Again the owner of the farm sent another slave, whom they wounded in the head and shamefully abused. He sent [still] another slave, whom they killed. He continued sending many more slaves; they beat some and killed others. The owner had one more person [left to send], his dearly loved son. [So] he sent him to them last of all, reasoning to himself, ' [Surely] they will treat my son with respect.' But the tenant farmers said to one another, 'This is the heir [to the vineyard]. Come on, let us kill him and then the inheritance will be ours.' So they took him and killed him and threw his body out of the vineyard. What do you think the owner of the vineyard will do [when he gets back]?" Jesus asked. [Then He continued], "He will come and kill those tenant farmers and give the vineyard to other people. Have you never read this Scripture [Psa. 118:22-23], 'The building block rejected by the builders is the same [one] that was made the principal stone by which the entire building was aligned. This was planned by the Lord and is a marvelous thing to us'?" And they [i.e., the leading priests and experts in the Law of Moses] attempted to arrest Jesus, but [hesitated because] they feared what the crowd might do, for they understood that He was speaking the parable against them. So, they left Him and went away.

"Listen to another parable [i.e., a brief story used to illustrate His teaching]: There was the owner of a farm who planted a vineyard and built a fence around it. He constructed a grape squeezing device, built a [lookout] tower [near it], leased it to tenant farmers and then went to another country. And when the season for harvesting the grapes approached, the owner of the farm sent his slaves to the tenant farmers to arrange for delivery of his crop. But the tenant farmers took the farm owner's slaves and beat one, killed another and stoned another. read more.
The owner of the farm then sent additional slaves and they were treated the same way. Then later on he sent his own son to the tenant farmers, saying, '[Surely] they will treat my son with respect.' But when the tenant farmers saw the son, they said to one another, 'This is the heir [to the vineyard]. Come on, let us kill him so we can take over his inheritance.' So, they took him and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. When the owner of the vineyard returns, what [do you think] he will do to those tenant farmers? They answered him, "He will bring terrible destruction on those evil men and will lease the vineyard to other tenant farmers who will deliver the crops to him each harvest time." Jesus [then] said to the leading priests and elders of the Jewish people, "Did you not ever read in the Scriptures [Psa. 118:22-23], 'The building block rejected by the builders is the same one that was made the principal stone by which the entire building was aligned. This was planned by the Lord and is a marvelous thing to us'? Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken from you [Jews] and will be given to a nation [i.e., the Gentiles] that will produce the fruit of the kingdom. And the person who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces, but whoever it falls on will be scattered like dust." And when the leading priests and Pharisees heard Jesus' parables, they realized He was speaking about them. When they attempted to arrest Him, [they hesitated because] they feared [what] the crowds [might do], since they considered Jesus a prophet.

Then Jesus began speaking to the people. [Note: And perhaps to the religious leaders as well. See Mark 11:18 with 12:1]. He told them this parable: "A man planted a vineyard, then leased it out to tenant farmers and went to another country for a long time. And when the [grape harvest] season came, the owner of the farm sent a slave to the tenant farmers, asking them for the grape harvest [to be delivered to him]. But the tenant farmers beat the slave and sent him away empty handed. Then he sent out another slave [i.e., to arrange for receiving the crop], but the tenant farmers beat him also, shamefully abused him and sent him away empty handed [as well]. read more.
So, he sent a third [slave] and they wounded him also and threw him out [of the vineyard]. Then the owner of the vineyard said, 'What shall I do [about this]? I will send my dearly loved son. Hopefully, they will treat him with respect.' But when the tenant farmers saw him, they began reasoning with one another, saying, 'This is the heir [to the vineyard]; let us kill him so the inheritance will be ours.' So, they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. Therefore, what will the owner of the vineyard do to them? [Jesus asked]. He will come and kill those tenant farmers and will give the vineyard to other people." And when the people heard [Him say] this, they said, "May that never happen." But Jesus looked at them and said, "Then what does it mean that is written [Psa. 118:22], 'The building block rejected by the builders [is] the same [one] that was made the principal stone by which the entire building was aligned?' Every person who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces, but whoever it falls on will be scattered like dust." Then the experts in the law of Moses and the leading priests attempted to arrest Jesus right away, [but hesitated] because they feared [what] the people [might do], since they perceived that He had spoken this parable against them.


About then a man named Jairus, one of the officials of the synagogue, came to Jesus and, upon seeing Him, fell to the ground at His feet. He begged Him earnestly, saying, "My little daughter is about to die; [please] come and place your hands on her so she may be healed and live." So, Jesus went along with the man, and was being thronged by a large crowd that followed Him. read more.
Then a woman, who had been bleeding for twelve years, came to Him. She had suffered much at the hands of many doctors [i.e., through treatments and medication that only increased her discomfort] and had spent all her money [on medical bills] and yet got worse instead of better. She had heard what Jesus was doing so came from the crowd behind Jesus and touched His robe. For she had told herself, "If only I can touch his clothing, I will be healed." And immediately her flow of blood stopped and she felt healed in her body from the affliction. Just then Jesus perceived in Himself that [healing] power had gone out from Him so turned to the crowd and asked, "Who touched my clothing?" And His disciples said to Him, "You see the large crowd thronging you and yet you ask 'Who touched me'?" Then He looked around to see who had done this [i.e., touched Him and received healing]. But the woman became afraid and trembled with fear, for she knew what had happened to her [i.e., the healing], so she came and fell down in front of Jesus and told Him the whole truth. And He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace and be [i.e., remain] healed from your affliction." While Jesus was still speaking, someone came from the synagogue official's house and said [to the official], "Your daughter is dead; why are you bothering the Teacher any more?" But Jesus disregarded what the person said and told the official, "Do not be afraid; just believe [i.e., in my power to restore your daughter]." He did not allow anyone to follow Him [i.e., to the official's house] except Peter, James and his brother John. And when they arrived at the synagogue official's house He saw a commotion there, with many people crying and wailing loudly. And when He entered [the house] He said to them, "Why are you making such a commotion and crying? The child is not [really] dead, but only sleeping." They laughed at Him scornfully. But after having all the people wait outside He took the child's father and mother, along with those who came with Him [i.e., Peter, James and John] and went in to where the [dead] child lay. And taking the child by the hand He said to her, "Talitha cumi," which means "Little girl," (I tell you), "get up." And immediately the little girl arose and walked, for she was twelve years old. [Upon seeing this] the people were completely amazed. But He strictly ordered them not to tell anyone about this; then He told them to give the girl something to eat.

And just then an official of the [Jewish] synagogue named Jairus came to Him and fell at His feet [i.e., worshiping. See Matt. 9:18] and begged Him to go to his house, for the official's only daughter, who was about twelve years old, was dying. As Jesus was going, large crowds pressed in on Him. Then a woman, who had been bleeding for twelve years, and who had spent all her income on doctors without being healed by any of them, read more.
came up behind Jesus and touched the edge of His robe. Immediately her bleeding stopped. Jesus said, "Who touched me?" And when everyone denied [doing it], Peter and the disciples said, "Master, many people are pressing in on you and crowding you." But Jesus replied, "Someone did touch me, for I perceived that [healing] power had gone out from me." And when the woman realized that she had not escaped notice, she came trembling [with fear] and fell down in front of Him, declaring before all the people why she had touched Him and how she had been immediately healed. Then Jesus said to her, "Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace." While He was still speaking, someone came from the synagogue official's house, saying [to him], "Your daughter is dead; do not bother the Teacher." But when Jesus heard this, He said [to the man], "Do not be afraid. Just believe [i.e., in my power to restore your daughter] and she will be made well [i.e., restored to life]." And when Jesus came to the [synagogue official's] house, He did not allow anyone to enter with Him except Peter, James, John and the girl's father and mother. And all the people [in the house] were crying and beating their chests in mourning, so Jesus said [to them], "Do not cry, for the girl is not [really] dead but [only] sleeping." And they laughed at Him scornfully, knowing that she was [already] dead. But taking her by the hand, He called to her, saying, "Child, get up." And immediately her spirit returned and she stood up. Then Jesus ordered them to give her something to eat. Her parents were amazed, but Jesus ordered them not to tell anyone what had happened.

While Jesus spoke these things, a leader [of the Jewish synagogue, named Jairus. See Mark 5:22-43] came and worshiped Him, saying, "My daughter has just died, but if you come and place your hand on her, she will live [again]." So, Jesus got up and, along with His disciples, followed the man. But just then a woman who had been bleeding for twelve years came up behind Him and touched the edge of His robe. read more.
For she had said to herself, "If I can just touch His robe, I will be healed." When Jesus turned and saw her, He said, "Take courage, daughter, your faith has made you well." And the woman was healed that [very] moment. When Jesus went into the leader [of the synagogue's] house, He saw musicians [playing a funeral dirge] and the crowd carrying on [in mournful wails]. He said, "Stand back, for the young lady is not [permanently] dead, but [rather] is sleeping." And the people laughed at Him scornfully. But after the crowd was sent outside, Jesus entered [her room, along with her parents and three of His disciples. See Mark 5:37-40] and took her by the hand, and the young lady rose up [from the dead]. And the report of this incident spread all over the district.


And so it happened, as Jesus was having a meal at Matthew's house, a number of [other] tax collectors and worldly people came to sit down with Him and His disciples. And when the Pharisees saw this they said to His disciples, "Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and worldly people?" When Jesus heard this, He said, "People who are healthy do not need a doctor; but [only] sick people do. read more.
Go and learn what this means: 'I desire mercy and not [only] sacrifice.' For I did not come to call righteous people [to be my followers] but sinners." Some of John's disciples came to Jesus saying, "Why is it that we and the Pharisees fast frequently [i.e., going without food and/or drink for religious reasons], but your disciples do not fast [at all]?" Jesus said to them, "Can the groomsmen act sadly while the groom is still with them? But the time will come when the groom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast. No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth onto an old garment; for what was intended to cover up [the hole] actually tears away [part of] the garment [i.e., when it shrinks], causing a bigger hole. Also, people do not put freshly squeezed grape juice into bottles made of previously used animal skins. If they did, the [old dried-out] animal skins would break open and the grape juice would [all] leak out, and the animal skins would become useless. But people put freshly squeezed grape juice into newly prepared animal skin bottles. That way both of them will survive."

And it happened that Jesus was having a meal at Levi's house and many tax collectors and worldly people sat down with Him and His disciples, for many [of these kinds of people] became His followers. And when the experts in the law of Moses, being Pharisees [i.e., a strict sect of the Jewish religion], saw that He was eating with tax collectors and worldly people, they said to His disciples, "Why does Jesus eat and drink with tax collectors and worldly people?" When Jesus heard [about] this, He said to them, "People who are healthy do not need a doctor, but [only] sick people do. I did not come to call those who do right, but sinners [instead]." read more.
Now John's disciples and the Pharisees were fasting, [i.e., going without food and/or drink for religious reasons]. Some people came and asked Jesus, "Why do John's disciples and the Pharisees' disciples fast, but your disciples do not?" Jesus answered them, "Can the companions of the groom fast while the groom is still with them? As long as they have the groom with them they cannot fast. But the time will come when the groom will be taken away from them. Then they will fast at that time. "No one sows a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, because what was supposed to cover the hole [actually] makes it larger. The new [piece of cloth] tears away from the old one and the hole is made worse. And no one puts freshly squeezed grape juice into bottles made of previously used animal skins. If he does, the grape juice will [cause cracks and] burst the [dried-out] animal skins and the grape juice will [all leak out and] be wasted, and the animal skin bottles will become useless. But people put freshly squeezed grape juice into newly prepared animal skin bottles."

Then Levi prepared a lavish dinner for Jesus at his house. A large number of [other] tax collectors were [also] having dinner with them. Now the Pharisees and their experts in the law of Moses complained to Jesus' disciples, saying, "Why do you men eat and drink with tax collectors and worldly people?" And Jesus answered them, "People who are healthy do not need a doctor, but [only] sick people do. read more.
I did not come to call those who are doing right to repent [i.e., to change their hearts and lives], but [only those who are] sinners." Then they said to Jesus, "John [the Immerser's] disciples fast frequently [i.e., going without food and/or drink for religious reasons] and they offer earnest prayer requests, and the disciples of the Pharisees do the same things. But your disciples eat and drink." Jesus answered them, "Can you force the companions of the groom to fast while the groom is [still] with them? But the time will come when the groom will be taken away from them [Note: Jesus here refers to Himself]. Then they will fast at that time." And He told them a parable [i.e., a brief story to illustrate His teaching]: "No one tears a piece [of cloth] from a new item of clothing and sews it on an old one. If he does, it will tear the new one. And besides, the piece [of cloth] from the new clothing will not match the old one. And no one puts freshly squeezed grape juice into previously used bottles made of animal skins. [If he does], the newly squeezed juice will [crack and] burst the [dried out] animal skins and [all the juice will] spill out, and the animal skin bottles will [also] become useless. But freshly squeezed grape juice must be put into newly made animal skins. And no one who has drunk aged wine wants newly squeezed [juice], for he says, 'The older [grape juice] is better.'"


When Jesus had come into Peter's house, He saw Peter's mother-in-law lying sick with a fever. He touched her hand and [immediately] her fever subsided and she got up [out of bed] and waited on Him. When evening came they brought many persons who were dominated by evil spirits to Jesus and He drove out the spirits with [just] a word and healed all those who were sick. read more.
This was in order to fulfill what was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying, [Isa. 53:4], "[He] Himself took [care of] our [physical] weaknesses and carried [away] our diseases."

and 2:1], and on the [first] Sabbath day Jesus entered the synagogue and taught people. And as soon as they left the synagogue, they went into the house of Simon [i.e., Peter] and Andrew, taking James and John with them. Now Simon's mother-in-law was sick [in bed] with a fever. Immediately, Jesus was told about her [condition] read more.
so He went to her, took her by the hand and raised her up [from bed]. The fever left her and she began serving them. When evening came and the sun had set, they brought to Jesus all those who were sick and those dominated by evil spirits. And people from all over the city [of Capernaum] gathered at the door of the house, and He healed many of those who were sick with various diseases and drove out many evil spirits. But He did not permit the evil spirits to tell people [who He was], because they knew who He was [i.e., the Christ].

So, He left the synagogue and entered Simon's [i.e., Peter's] house. Now Simon's mother-in-law was [in bed] stricken with a high fever. And they [i.e., Andrew, James and John, besides Peter. See Mark 1:29] begged Him [to do something] for her. So, He stood over her and spoke sternly to the fever. It left her and she got up [out of bed] and began serving them. And when the sun was setting, everyone who had friends or relatives who were sick with various diseases brought them to Jesus and He placed His hands on each one of them and healed them. read more.
And evil spirits also came out of many people, shouting [at Him], "You are the Son of God." And Jesus spoke sternly to them and would not allow them to speak [anymore] because they knew He was the Christ [Note: Jesus would not accept the endorsement of these Satanic spirits].


When evening came that day He said to the disciples, "Let us go over to the other side [i.e., the east side of Lake Galilee]." And leaving the crowd, the disciples took Him in their boat just the way He was [i.e., this probably means without His making provision for the trip]. They were accompanied by other boats also. [Then] a violent windstorm arose [on the lake] and huge waves began splashing into the boat until it began to fill with water. read more.
Jesus was sleeping on a pillow in the stern of the boat. They awakened Him, shouting, "Teacher, do you not care that we are sinking?" He [immediately] awoke and spoke sternly to the wind and called out to the water, "Be peaceful and still." [Immediately] the wind stopped blowing and a great calm came over the water. And He said to His disciples, "Why are you so afraid? Do you not still have [any] faith?" And they were extremely afraid, and said to one another, "Who can this man be that even the wind and water obey him?"

Now it happened on one of those days that Jesus entered a boat with His disciples. He said to them, "Let us go over to the other side" [i.e., the east side of Lake Galilee]; so they launched out. But while they were sailing, Jesus fell asleep. A windstorm blew down on the lake and [the boat] began filling with water so they were in great danger [of sinking]. The disciples approached Jesus and woke Him, shouting, "Master, Master, we are sinking." And He woke up and spoke sternly to the wind and the raging water; [then] the storm [immediately] stopped and [everything] became calm. read more.
Then He said to the disciples, "Where is your faith?" They became afraid and were amazed, saying to one another, "Who can this [man] be, that he can even command the winds and the water and they obey him?"

Now when Jesus saw large crowds around Him, He gave orders [i.e., to His followers] to leave for the other side [i.e., to go from the west to the east side of Lake Galilee]. [While there] an expert in the law of Moses said to Him, "Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go." 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." read more.
Then another one of His disciples said to Him, "Allow me to go and bury my father first." But Jesus answered him, "Become my follower, and let the [spiritually] dead bury them" [i.e., let a person's relatives care for their own family members until they die]. And when He entered a boat, His disciples followed Him. Suddenly a violent storm came up over the lake, so that [huge] waves began to overwhelm the boat. But Jesus was sleeping [through it all]. His disciples came and awoke Him, shouting, "Lord, save us, we are sinking!" And He called to them, "Why are you [so] afraid? You have such little faith!" Then He stood up and sternly commanded the wind and the waves, and they became very calm. The men [on board the boat] marveled, saying, "What kind of a man is this, that even the wind and waves obey Him?"


Jesus went all over Galilee teaching in the [Jewish] synagogues and preaching the good news of the [coming, see verse 17] kingdom, and healing all kinds of disease and sickness among the people. The news [of what Jesus was doing] spread all over [the country of] Syria and they brought to Him all those who were sick, stricken with various diseases and pains, dominated by evil spirits, and afflicted with seizures and paralysis, and He healed them [all]. Large crowds followed Him from Galilee, Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea and from beyond [i.e., the east side of] the Jordan River.

Very early in the morning, [even] before daylight, Jesus woke up, left Simon's house [verse 29] and went out to a deserted place where He prayed. And Simon and those who were with him [i.e., probably Andrew, James and John. See verse 29] followed Him. When they found Him, they said to Him, "Everyone is looking for you." read more.
He said to them, "Let us go on to the next towns so that I can preach there also, for this was why I came out [i.e., Jesus was sent by God to preach to other towns as well as Capernaum. See Luke 4:43]." So, Jesus went into the [Jewish] synagogues throughout all Galilee, preaching [the good news about the coming kingdom, verses 14-15] and driving out evil spirits.

And when it became daylight He left [Simon's house] and went to a deserted place [i.e., to pray. See Mark 1:35]. The crowds were looking for Him and [upon finding Him] went to Him and tried to discourage Him from leaving them. But He told them, "I must go to other towns also to preach the good news of God's [coming] kingdom, for this is why I was sent [by God]." So, He [went and] preached in the [Jewish] synagogues of Judea [also].


While Jesus was walking beside Lake Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon called Peter, and his brother Andrew, casting their net into the lake, because they were fishermen. And He said to them, "Come with me, and I will make you fishermen for people." They immediately left their nets and went with Him. read more.
[As] Jesus went from there He saw two [other] brothers, James and John, the sons of Zebedee. They were in the boat with their father Zebedee, repairing their nets. He called them, and immediately they left their boat and their father and went with Him.

And while walking along the shore of Lake Galilee, Jesus saw Simon [i.e., Peter] and his brother Andrew casting their net in the lake, for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, "Come, follow me and I will make you fishermen for people." So, they left their nets immediately and became His followers. read more.
Then, as He walked on a little farther, He saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John, who were in their boat repairing nets. Immediately He called them [to become His followers] and they left their father, Zebedee, and went along with Him.

Now it happened while Jesus was standing on the shore of Lake Genneseret [i.e., Lake Galilee] that the crowd was pushing closer to Him to hear God's message. He saw two boats [tied up] along the shore of the lake, for the fishermen had left them [there] and were washing their nets [i.e., on the beach]. So, He entered one of the boats that belonged to Simon [i.e., Peter], and asked him to launch out a short distance from shore. Then He sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. read more.
And when He had finished talking, He said to Simon, "Launch out into deeper water and lower your nets for a catch [of fish]." Simon replied, "Master, we worked all night, but did not catch anything. But I will lower the nets if you say so." And when they had done this, they gathered in a large number of fish [until] their nets began to break. So, they motioned to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. When they came, they filled both boats until they began to sink. But when Simon Peter saw this, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, "Go away from me, Lord, because I am a sinful man." For he and those who were with him were amazed at the [huge] quantity of fish they had caught. Simon's partners James and John, sons of Zebedee, were also amazed. So, Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid; from now on you will catch people." And when they had brought their boats to shore, they left everything and followed Jesus.


Now the names of the twelve apostles were: First, Simon, also called Peter, Andrew, his brother, James and John, sons of Zebedee, Philip, Bartholomew [i.e., the same as Nathaniel. See John 1:45], Thomas [i.e., the same as Didymus. See John 11:16], Matthew, the tax collector [i.e., the same as Levi. See Mark 2:14], James, the son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus [i.e., the same as Judas, son of James. See Luke 6:16], Simon, the Cananean [i.e., the same as the Zealot. See Luke 6:15], and Judas Iscariot, who also [besides being an apostle] was His betrayer.

He then went up into the mountain and summoned those He wanted to come to Him and they came. He appointed twelve apostles to travel with Him, whom He could send out to preach and have authority to drive out evil spirits. read more.
These apostles were: Simon, to whom He gave the added name Peter, James and his brother John, the sons of Zebedee, to whom He gave the added name Boanerges, which means "Sons of Thunder," Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew [i.e., the same as Nathaniel. See John 1:45], Matthew [i.e., the same as Levi. See Mark 2:14], Thomas [i.e., the same as Didymus. See John 11:16], James, the son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus [i.e., the same as Judas, the son of James. See Luke 6:16], Simon the Canaanean [i.e., the same as the Zealot. See Luke 6:15], and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed Him. Then Jesus went into a house.

And it happened during that time that Jesus went out to the mountain [i.e., probably a hillside near Capernaum] to pray, and continued praying to God all night. And when it was daylight, He called His disciples and chose from among them twelve, whom He also called apostles. [They were] Simon, also called Peter, and his brother Andrew, James and John [also brothers], Philip, Bartholomew [i.e., the same as Nathaniel. See John 1:45], read more.
Matthew [i.e., the same as Levi. See Mark 2:14], Thomas [i.e., the same as Didymus. See John 11:16], James, the son of Alphaeus, Simon, called the Zealot [i.e., the same as the Cananean. See Matt. 10:4], Judas, the son of James [i.e., the same as Thaddaeus. See Matt. 10:3] and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor [to Jesus]. Then He came down [from the mountain] with them and stood on a level place [where] a large crowd of His disciples and a large group of people had gathered to hear Him and be healed from their diseases. And [also] those who were tormented by evil spirits were healed. Then the whole crowd tried to touch Him because [supernatural] power was coming from His body, and He healed all of them.


Now when Jesus was at Bethany [Note: This was a small village less than two miles east of Jerusalem], in the house of Simon, the man [who probably had been healed] of an infectious skin disease, a woman with an alabaster [i.e., stone] jar of very expensive perfume came to Him and poured it on His head as He reclined at the dinner table. [Note: See Matt. 23:6] But when His disciples saw this they were very upset and said, "What is the reason for such waste? read more.
For this perfume could have been sold for a large sum of money and given to poor people." But Jesus was aware [of what they were up to], so said, "Why are you bothering this woman? For she has done a kind deed to me. You will always have poor people with you, but you will not always have me. For in the act of pouring this perfume on my body she was preparing it for my burial. Truly I tell you, wherever this Gospel [message] is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done [for me] will [also] be told about, as a memorial of her [kindness to me]."

And while Jesus was in Bethany [Note: This was a small village fewer than two miles east of Jerusalem], sitting at the dinner table in the house of Simon, the man with an infectious skin disease [Note: This man had probably been healed by now], a woman with an alabaster [i.e., stone] jar of very expensive perfume came to Him, broke the jar and poured the perfume on His head. But some [of the disciples. See Matt. 26:8] were upset among themselves, saying, "What is the reason for wasting this perfume? It might have been sold for a large sum of money and the money given to poor people. [Note: The amount indicated here was equivalent to days of a farm laborer's pay, or over $20,000 in 1994]. And they complained about her [doing this]. read more.
But Jesus said, "Let her alone. Why are you bothering this woman? For she has done a kind deed to me. You will always have poor people with you, and you can do something good for them whenever you want to, but you will not always have me with you. She has done what she could. She has applied this aromatic oil to my body in anticipation of my burial. For truly I tell you, wherever the Gospel message will be preached throughout the whole world, what this woman has done [for me] will [also] be told about as a memorial of her [kindness to me]."

So, six days before the Passover Festival [began], Jesus went to Bethany, where Lazarus lived. He was the man Jesus [had] raised from the dead. There Mary and Martha prepared a meal for Jesus. Martha served it while Lazarus was among those who reclined at the table with Him. [Note: See Matt. 23:6]. Then Mary took about a pint of expensive, aromatic perfume; [it was] genuine nard [Note: This was a sweet-smelling herb] and poured [some of] it on Jesus' feet and wiped them with her hair. The [whole] house was filled with the fragrant scent of the perfume. read more.
But one of Jesus' disciples named Judas Iscariot, who later turned Him over [i.e., to the Jewish authorities], said, "Why was this perfume not sold for a large sum of money [Note: The amount here was equivalent to three hundred days of a farm laborer's pay, or over $20,000 in 1994] and [then] the money given to poor people?" Now he did not say this because he cared about poor people, but because he was in charge of the money bag, and being a thief, he used to steal from it. So, Jesus said, "Leave her alone. Let her keep [the rest of] it for [use on] the day of my burial. For you will always have poor people among you, but you will not always have me."


And it happened at that time that Jesus went from Nazareth, in Galilee [i.e., south to Judea], where He was immersed by John in the Jordan River. And immediately upon emerging from the water, He saw the sky split open and the Holy Spirit descending on Him as a dove. And a voice called out from heaven, saying, "You are my dearly loved Son. I am very pleased with you."

Jesus then came from [the province of] Galilee to be immersed by John in the Jordan River. But John tried to discourage Him [from being immersed], saying, "I should be immersed by you, and you are coming to me [for immersion]?" But Jesus answered him, "Allow it [to be done], for it is proper for us to complete everything that is right [before God]." So, John agreed to it. read more.
After Jesus was immersed [by John], He came up out of the water and heaven was opened up before Him and He saw the Holy Spirit from God descending, as a dove, and landing upon Him. Then a voice came out of heaven, saying, "This is my dearly loved Son. I am very pleased with Him."

Now it happened when all the people had been immersed [by John], that Jesus was also immersed [by him]. And while Jesus was praying, heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit came down on Him in a physical form, as a dove, and a voice spoke out of heaven [saying], "You are my dearly loved Son. I am very pleased with you." And Jesus was about thirty years old when He began to teach. (It was assumed that) He was the son of Joseph, who was the [legal] son of Heli [Note: A lineage through Jesus' mother Mary follows:]


And when He got to the other side [i.e., the east side of the lake], He was in the district of the Gadarenes. There He was met by two men dominated by evil spirits. They came from the graveyard [where they lived] and were so fierce that no one could [safely] travel that road. Suddenly they shouted out, "What do you want with us, you Son of God? Have you come here to torture us before it is time to?" [i.e., before our punishment is due. See II Pet. 2:4; Jude 6]. Now a large herd of [wild] hogs [i.e., about of them. See Mark 5:13] was grazing some distance away from them. read more.
So, the evil spirits [in one of the men. See Mark 5:1ff] begged Jesus, saying, "If you are going to drive us out [of this man], send us away into that herd of [wild] hogs." Jesus replied to them, "Go [ahead]." And they came out [of the man] and entered the [wild] hogs, and suddenly the entire herd rushed down the cliff into the lake and drowned in the water [below]. [Upon seeing this happen] the men who were tending the herd ran away and went into the town [i.e., of Gadara, one of ten towns making up the province of Decapolis], and told the people everything, [including] what had happened to the men dominated by evil spirits.

Then Jesus and His disciples [finally] arrived on the other side of the lake [i.e., the east side] in the district of Geresa [Note: Matt. 8:28 says 'Gadara.' Geresa and Gadara were two towns When Jesus left the boat, immediately a man with an evil spirit came from the graveyard to meet Him. This man had been living in the graveyard and no one had been able to keep him tied up, not even with a chain. read more.
He had often been bound with ropes and chains but had broken the chains off and torn the ropes to pieces. And no one had enough strength to subdue him. And night and day, in the graveyard and in the mountains, he was always shouting out and cutting himself with [sharp] rocks. When he saw Jesus from far away he ran to Him and worshiped Him. And shouting with a loud voice, he said, "What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, in God's name, do not torture me." For Jesus was saying to [the evil spirit in] him, "Come out of this man, you evil spirit." Then He asked [the evil spirit], "What is your name?" And he answered Him, "My name is 'Legion,' [Note: This word means a number consisting of between 5,000 and 6,000], for there are many of us [i.e., evil spirits]." Then the spirits begged Jesus earnestly not to send them away out of the region. On the side of a [nearby] mountain, a large herd of [wild] hogs was grazing. miles apart in the same region east of Lake Galilee]. The evil spirits begged Him, saying, "Send us into those [wild] hogs, so we can enter their bodies." And He gave them permission to do it. So, the evil spirits went out of the man's body and entered the bodies of the [wild] hogs. The herd then rushed down the cliff into the lake. There were about two thousand that drowned in the lake. Those who had been feeding them ran and told what all occurred in the town and around the countryside and [so] people came to find out what had happened. And when people came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been dominated by 5,000 to 6,000 evil spirits sitting down with his clothes on and perfectly sane, and they were afraid. Those who saw this told the people what had happened to the man dominated by the evil spirits and about the [wild] hogs. So, they began begging Jesus to leave that region. As He entered the boat the man who had been dominated by evil spirits begged for permission to be allowed to go with Him. But Jesus would not allow him, saying to the man, "Go home to your friends [and family?] and tell them about the great things the Lord has done for you and how He had pity on you." But the man went away and began telling people throughout Decapolis about all of the great things Jesus had done for him. [Note: "Decapolis" means "ten cities" and was a region located east of the Jordan River]. When Jesus had crossed over again in a boat to the other side [i.e., to the northwest shore of the lake, probably in the vicinity of Capernaum], a large crowd gathered around Him along the shore of the lake.

[Finally] they arrived at the district of the Gerasenes, which is opposite [i.e., across the lake from the province of] Galilee. [Note: Matt. 8:28 says 'Gadara.' Geresa and Gadara were two towns about twelve miles apart in the same region east of Lake Galilee]. And when He stepped out [of the boat] onto the shore, He was met by a certain man from the town, who was dominated by evil spirits. He had not worn any clothes for a long time and lived in the graveyard instead of a house. And when he saw Jesus, he fell at His feet [i.e., in worship. See Mark 5:6] and shouted out with a loud voice saying, "What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Highest God? I beg you, do not torture me." read more.
For Jesus was commanding the evil spirits to be driven out of the man, because they had been controlling him for a long time. The man was continually being guarded and his hands and feet were bound with chains. [Sometimes] he broke loose from the chains and was driven into the desert by the evil spirits. Then Jesus asked him, "What is your name?" And he answered, " [My name is] 'Legion'" [Note: This word means a number consisting of between 5,000 and 6,000], for many evil spirits had entered the man. And the evil spirits begged Jesus not to require them to go away into the "pit" [Note: This appears to be the place reserved for the devil and his evil spirits. See Rev. 9:1-11; 20:1-3]. Now a herd of many [wild?] hogs was grazing on a [nearby] mountain, so the evil spirits begged Jesus to give them permission to enter [the bodies of] the hogs. So, He gave them permission [to do it]. Then the evil spirits went out of the man and entered the hogs. The herd [immediately] rushed down the cliff into the lake and was drowned. And when those who had been grazing the hogs saw what had happened, they ran and told it in the town and [around] the country. People went out to see [i.e., to find out] what had happened. And [when] they came to Jesus and found the man from whom the evil spirits had been driven out sitting down at Jesus' feet with his clothes on and perfectly sane, they were afraid. Those who saw this told others how the man dominated by evil spirits was restored. Then all the people around the district of the Gerasenes asked Jesus to leave their area because they were gripped with great fear. So, He entered a boat and returned. But the man from whom the evil spirits had been driven out begged Jesus to allow him to travel with Him, but Jesus sent him away, saying, "Return to your house and tell people about the great things God has done for you." So, he went on his way, proclaiming throughout the whole town [i.e., Gerasa. See verse 26] the great things Jesus had done for him. Then as Jesus returned [i.e., to the northwest shore of the lake, probably to the vicinity of Capernaum], a crowd was waiting for Him and welcomed Him.


And after six days [had passed], Jesus took Peter, James, and his brother John aside and went up into a high mountain [i.e., an unidentified mountain nearby]. There His whole appearance was [miraculously] changed in front of them. His face shone [as brilliantly] as the sun and His clothing became as bright as light. Then suddenly Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Jesus. read more.
Peter said to Jesus, "Lord, it is so good for us to be here. If you wish, I will build three [small] shelters here, one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah." [Note: Perhaps Peter wanted to provide quarters for the three to stay temporarily, thus prolonging the wonderful experience. In any event, he should not have done what suggested that Moses and Elijah were equal to Jesus]. While he was still talking, suddenly a bright cloud engulfed them. Just then, a voice spoke out of the cloud, saying, "This is my dearly loved Son, who is very pleasing to me; listen to Him." And when the disciples heard [the voice], they fell [to the ground] on their faces and became very afraid. But Jesus came and touched them, saying, "Get up, and do not be afraid." When they looked up, the only one they saw was Jesus. And as they were coming down from the mountain, Jesus ordered them, saying, "Do not tell anyone about the vision [you have just seen] until the Son of man has been raised from the dead." His disciples asked Him, "Why then [since you are obviously the Messiah] do the experts in the law of Moses say that Elijah must come first, [i.e., before the Messiah]?" Jesus answered them, "Elijah truly was to come, and restore all things [i.e., to their proper perspective concerning the Messiah]. But I tell you that Elijah has already come, but they [i.e., the Jewish leaders] did not understand who he was, but [instead] did to him what they wanted to. In the same way, the Son of man will also suffer from what the Jews will do." Then the disciples understood that He was talking to them about John the Immerser.

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. His clothing became dazzling and extremely white; whiter than anyone in the world could [possibly] launder them. Then Elijah, along with Moses, appeared to them and they were talking with Jesus. read more.
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] For he did not know what to say, because they [all] became very afraid. [Just then] a cloud engulfed them and a voice spoke out of the cloud saying, "This is my dearly loved Son, listen to Him." And suddenly they looked all around them, but the only one they saw with them was Jesus. 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. So, they kept what He told them to themselves, discussing [only] among themselves what "rising again from the dead" meant. 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?" 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. 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]."

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]. And as He was praying, the appearance of His face was [miraculously] changed and His clothing became dazzling white. Then suddenly two men were [seen] talking with Jesus. They were Moses and Elijah, read more.
who appeared in splendor, and were speaking of Jesus' [coming] departure [i.e., His imminent death], which He was soon to experience at Jerusalem. 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. 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] 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]. Then a voice spoke out of the cloud, saying, "This is My Son, [whom] I have chosen; listen to Him." 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.


On that [same] day, Jesus went out of the house and sat down on the shore of the lake [i.e., Lake Galilee]. Great crowds gathered around Him so that He went and sat down in a boat [just off shore], while the crowd stood on the beach. And He spoke many things to them in parables [i.e., brief stories to illustrate His teaching], saying, "Once a farmer went out [to his field] to plant grain. read more.
And some of the seed he sowed [i.e., scattering it by hand] landed along the side of the road and birds came and ate it. And other seed fell on rocky ground where there was not much soil and immediately it sprouted up because the soil was so shallow. But when the sun came up these tender sprouts were scorched and, since they had such tiny roots, they [quickly] withered away. And other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and [eventually] choked out the tender sprouts. And [still] other seed fell onto fertile soil, where some of it produced a crop of one hundred, some sixty and some thirty times [as much as was planted]. The person who has ears to hear with ought to listen [to this] carefully." Jesus' disciples came and said to Him, "Why are you speaking to them [i.e., the large crowds] by using parables?" He replied, "You disciples are being given an understanding of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but the crowds of people are not. For to the person who [already] has something, [more] will be given, so he will have a larger amount [i.e., of understanding], but from the person who has [almost] nothing, even [the little] he has will be taken away from him. Therefore, I am speaking to them with parables because [although] they can see, they [really] do not perceive, and [although] they can hear, they [really] do not comprehend, and so they [utterly] fail to understand [what I am trying to get across]. So, the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled by them, which says, [Isa. 6:9f] 'You will hear all right, but you will not understand [what you hear]. You will see all right but you will not perceive [what you see]. For these people's minds are dull, and their ears have difficulty hearing, and they have shut their eyes. For if this were not the case, they would perceive what they see with their eyes, and comprehend what they hear with their ears, and understand with their minds and would turn [back to God] again so I would heal them [from their sins].' But your eyes are fortunate for they [really] see, and so are your ears, for they [really] hear. For truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people have desired to see the things you are seeing, but did not get to. They desired to hear the things you are hearing, but did not get to. "Listen then to this parable of the farmer [who sowed seed]. When anyone hears the message of the kingdom but does not understand it, the evil one [i.e., the devil] comes to him and grabs away what had been sown in his heart. This is the person who was scattered to the side of the road. And the person who was sown on rocky ground is the one who hears the message and immediately welcomes it joyfully, but since he has such a shallow root, he lasts for [only] a short while. Then when trouble or persecution comes because of the message, immediately he falls away [from God]. And the person who was sown among the thorns is the one who hears the message, but the anxieties of the world [i.e., of life] and the deceptiveness of [material] riches choke the message and he becomes unproductive. But the person who was sown on the fertile soil is the one who hears the message and understands it. Truly, he produces a crop that yields one hundred, sixty or thirty times [as much as was planted]."

Jesus again began teaching along the shore of the lake [of Galilee]. A huge crowd gathered around Him so that He had to sit in a boat out in the lake [to speak to them], while all the crowd stood on the shore. He taught the people many things using parables [to illustrate His lessons]. In His teaching He said to them, "Listen carefully A farmer went out to plant seed, read more.
and it happened, as he sowed [i.e., scattering the seed by hand], some of it fell by the side of the road and birds came and ate it. And some seed fell on rocky ground where there was not much soil, and immediately it sprouted up because the soil was so shallow. But when the sun came up the newly sprouted plants were scorched, and because they had no roots, [soon] withered away. And other seeds fell among thorns which grew up and choked them so that they yielded no crop. Then other seeds fell into fertile soil, and growing up to maturity, they yielded an ever increasing crop. They produced thirty, sixty and even a hundred times [as much as was planted]." And Jesus said, "Whoever has ears to hear with ought to listen [to this] carefully." And when He was alone those people who gathered around Him, along with the twelve apostles, asked Him what the parables meant. He said to them, "You disciples are being given an understanding of the secret of the kingdom of God, but to outsiders everything will be told in parables. This is so that even though they see, they will see and yet not perceive. And even though they hear, they will hear and yet not understand. For if they did, they would turn [back to God] again and receive forgiveness." And Jesus continued to speak to them, "Do you not know what this parable means? Then how can you understand any of the other parables? A farmer planted 'the word' [i.e., the message of God]. Some of the seed that fell along the roadside represents where 'the word' was sown [i.e., preached]. When these people have heard, immediately Satan comes and takes away 'the word' which had been sown in them. And in the same way, some [of the seed] that was sown on rocky soil represented those who heard 'the word' and immediately accepted it gladly, but [since] they had such shallow roots, they continued on for [only] a little while. Then, when trouble and persecution arose over [obeying] 'the word,' immediately they stumbled [i.e., and fell away from God]. And other seeds represent those who are sown among thorns. These are people who heard 'the word,' but worry [over things] of the world, and the deceitfulness of material wealth, and the evil desires for other things entered their hearts and choked [the effectiveness of] 'the word,' so that it did not yield a crop [in their lives]. Then there were those who were sown on fertile soil. These represent people who heard 'the word,' accepted it and yielded a crop of thirty, sixty and even a hundred times [as much as was planted]." Then He said to them, "Is a lamp brought in to be put under a bushel-sized container, or under the bed, instead of on its stand? For there is nothing that is hidden that should not be exposed. Neither is anything covered up that should not be revealed. If anyone has ears to hear with, he ought to listen to this carefully." And He said to them, "Pay attention to what you are hearing from me. The standard you use in giving [to others] is the standard they will use on you, with even more added. For to the person who [already] has something, [more] will be given, and from the person who has [almost] nothing, even what [little] he has will be taken away from him."

Then when a large crowd assembled and people from every town were coming to Jesus, He told them this parable [i.e., a brief story to illustrate His teaching]: A farmer went out [to his field] to plant grain. And as he sowed [i.e., scattering seeds by hand], some of it landed along side of the road; it was stepped on by people and [eventually] birds of the sky came and ate it. And other [seed] fell on rocky ground and as soon as it started to grow, it [quickly] withered away, because it had no moisture. read more.
And other [seed] fell among thorns, which grew up with it and [eventually] choked out [the tender sprouts]. And [still] other [seed] fell into fertile soil; it grew and produced a crop of one hundred times [as much as was planted]. As He said these things, He called out, "The person who has ears to hear with ought to listen [to this] carefully." Then Jesus' disciples asked Him what this parable meant. And He said to them, "You [disciples] are being given an understanding of the secrets of the kingdom of God, but the rest of the people [are being told] in parables, so that [even though they appear to be] seeing, they will not [actually] see; and [even though they seem to] hear, they will not understand. Now [the meaning of] the parable is this: The seed represents the word of God. And those people [represented by the seed falling] along side of the road are those who have heard the word [of God], but the devil comes and takes away the word from their heart, so that they do not believe it and receive salvation. And those people [represented by the seed falling] on rocky ground are those who, upon hearing the word [of God], accept it gladly, but since they have no root [system], they believe it for [only] awhile, and [then] in times of trial fall away [from God]. And those people [represented by the seed] that fell among thorns are the ones who have heard [the word], and as they go about their business, they become choked by worry, by money and by worldly pleasures, and produce no mature crop. And those people [represented by seed falling] in the fertile soil are those who possess a good and honest heart when they hear the word [of God]. They hold on to it and patiently [continue until they] produce a crop. And no one lights an [olive oil] lamp and then covers it with a basket or puts it under a bed. But he places it on a stand so that those entering [the house] will see [by] the light. For there is nothing done in obscurity that will not be made known [openly], and nothing done secretly that will not [eventually] become known and be revealed. Pay attention to how you listen, for to the person who [already] has something, [more] will be given, but from the person who has [virtually] nothing, even what he thinks he has will be taken away from him."


Then a person with an infectious skin disease came to Jesus and, kneeling down before Him, begged Him, saying, "If you want to, you can heal me." [Note: Throughout this narrative the term "heal/healing" is originally "clean/cleansing" because the Jews viewed a person with such a disease as ceremonially "unclean." See Lev. 13:1-3]. And being moved with deep pity, Jesus reached out His hand, touched him and said, "I do want to; be healed." And immediately the infectious skin disease left him and he was healed. read more.
Jesus sternly warned him, sending him directly out, and saying to him, "Make sure you do not say anything to anyone. But go and show yourself to the priest and make an offering for your healing with whatever Moses ordered [Lev. 14:1-9], as evidence to people [that you were completely healed]." But [instead] the man went out telling everyone about the miracle of healing and spreading the story widely, so that Jesus was not able to enter a town publicly but had to remain outside in deserted places. [So], people went to Him there from all over the region.

And it happened while Jesus was in one of the towns [i.e., surrounding Lake Galilee], that a man covered with an infectious skin disease appeared and, when he saw Jesus, he fell on his face [to the ground] and begged Him, saying, "If you want to, you can heal me." [Note: Throughout this narrative the terms "heal/healing" are originally "clean/cleansing" because the Jews viewed a person with such a disease as ceremonially "unclean." See Lev. 13:1-3]. Then He reached out His hand and touched the man, saying, "I [do] want to; be healed." And immediately the infectious skin disease left him. Then He ordered the man not to tell anyone [about the healing], saying, "Go on your way and show yourself to the priest and offer the proper sacrifice for your healing that Moses required [Lev. 13:49; 14:2ff] as evidence to people [that you were healed]." read more.
But the news about what Jesus had done spread all the more widely, so that large crowds assembled to listen to Him and to be healed of their sicknesses. So, He went away to deserted places and prayed.

Just then a person with an infectious skin disease came and worshiped Him, saying, "Lord, if you want to, you can heal me." Jesus reached out His hand and touched the man, saying, "I do want to; you are healed." And immediately his infectious skin disease was healed. Jesus said to him, "Be sure you do not tell anyone [about your healing yet]; but [first] go and show yourself to the priest and then offer the [sacrificial] gift required by the law of Moses [See Lev. 13:49; 14:2ff], as evidence to them [that you have been healed]."


And so when Jesus had finished speaking He left Galilee and came to the region of Judea, on the east side of the Jordan River. Large crowds followed Him there and were healed by Him.

And Jesus left there and went to the region of Judea and east of the Jordan River. Again crowds gathered around Him and He continued teaching them, as was His custom.

Now Jesus was teaching in one of the [Jewish] synagogues on the Sabbath day. And just then [He met] a woman who had an [evil] spirit that had caused her to be deformed for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not raise herself up. [Note: This was probably osteomyelitis or osteoporosis]. And when Jesus saw her, He called and said to her, "Woman, you are freed from your deformed condition." read more.
Then He placed His hands on her and immediately she straightened up and praised God. But the official of the synagogue became angry because Jesus had healed [someone] on the Sabbath day. [Note: This was viewed as a violation of proper Sabbath day observance by certain Jews who interpreted the law of Moses with narrow legalism]. So, the official said to the crowd, "There are six days [in the week] for people to work. Therefore, you should come to be healed on one of them, and not on the Sabbath day." But the Lord answered them, "You hypocrites! Does not every one of you untie his ox or his donkey from its stall and lead it to water on the Sabbath day? So, should not this woman, being a daughter [i.e., descendant] of Abraham, whom Satan has bound [with this disease] for eighteen years, have been released from this bondage on the Sabbath day?" And as He said these things, all of His enemies felt ashamed [i.e., for objecting to such a noble act], but the whole crowd rejoiced over all the wonderful things He was doing. Then Jesus asked, "What is the kingdom of God like? And what shall I compare it to? It is similar to a seed from the mustard tree, which a man took and planted in his garden. And it grew and became a [large] tree, and the birds of the sky roosted in its branches." And again He asked, "What shall I compare the kingdom of God to? It is similar to yeast, which a woman worked into three batches of dough, until the dough was completely permeated [by it]." Then Jesus went through [various] towns and villages, teaching as He traveled on to Jerusalem. [Along the way] someone asked Him, "Lord, will [only] a few people be saved?" And He answered them, "You should try hard to enter [God's kingdom] by means of the narrow door, for I tell you, many people will try to enter it but will not be able to. Once the owner of the house gets up and closes the door, leaving you standing outside knocking on the door, [and] saying, 'Sir, [please] open [the door] for us.' and he answers you, 'I do not know you or where you came from,' then you will begin to say, 'We used to eat and drink with you, and you taught in our streets.' And He will say [i.e., the Lord is represented as saying this in the judgment. See Matt. 7:23; 8:11-12], 'I tell you, I do not know where you came from, [so] go away from me, all you people who have done sinful things.' [Then] there will be crying and excruciating pain, when you will see Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God and [you will see] yourselves thrown outside. And people will come from the east and west and from the north and south to sit down in the kingdom of God. And certainly, those [who appear to be] last will be first [i.e., in importance and blessings], and those [who appear to be] first will [end up] being last." At that very time certain Pharisees came to Jesus saying, "Get out of here and go someplace else, for King Herod wants to kill you." And He said to them, "Go and tell that fox [Note: This is a metaphor signifying the sly, cunning nature of King Herod], 'Look, I am driving out evil spirits and performing [miraculous] healings today and tomorrow, but on the third day I will be finished.' Nevertheless, I must continue to travel today and tomorrow and the next day, for it is not possible for a prophet to be killed outside of Jerusalem. "O, Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you people who murdered the prophets and stoned those who were sent to you! How often I have wanted to gather you people together, even as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing! Look, your house [i.e., the Jewish Temple] is being abandoned [by me ?]. You will not see me until [the time when] you will be saying, 'Praise the One who is coming in the name of the Lord.'"


About that time Jesus was walking through a grainfield on the Sabbath day. His disciples were hungry so began picking off some heads of grain to eat [the kernels]. [Note: It was an accepted practice for people in that day to be permitted to do this as they walked along paths bordering a grainfield]. But when the Pharisees saw this, they said to Him, "Look, your disciples are doing what is against the law of Moses to do on a Sabbath day." Jesus replied, "Have you not read what King David did when he and his men were hungry? [I Sam. 21:6] read more.
He entered the house of God [i.e., the Temple] and ate the 'Bread of Presence', which was not permissible, according to the law of Moses, for him or those with him to do, since it was reserved only for the priests. Or, have you not read in the law of Moses that the priests in the Temple defiled the Sabbath day [i.e., by doing the 'work' of offering sacrifices] and were not held guilty [of wrongdoing]? [See Num. 28:9-10] But I tell you, someone greater than the Temple is here [with you]. If you had [fully] understood what this means: 'I desire mercy and not [only] sacrifice,' you would not have condemned someone who was not guilty [of wrongdoing]. For the Son of man is lord [i.e., has authority] over the Sabbath day."

And it happened that Jesus was walking through the grainfields on the Sabbath day and His disciples began picking off heads of grain [to eat] as they traveled along. [Note: It was an accepted custom for people in that day to be permitted to do this as they walked along the paths bordering a grainfield]. And the Pharisees asked Him, "Look, why are they [i.e., Jesus' disciples] doing what is against the law of Moses on the Sabbath day?" And He replied to them, "Did you never read what King David did when he and his men were hungry and needed something to eat? [See I Sam. 21:6]. read more.
Or how he entered the house of God [i.e., the Temple] when Abiathar was head priest, and ate the 'Bread of Presence' which was not permissible, according to the law of Moses, for anyone but priests? He even gave [some of it] to those who were with him." And Jesus said to them, "The Sabbath day was made for man's [benefit], and not man for the Sabbath [day's benefit]. So, the Son of man is lord [i.e., has authority] even over the Sabbath day."

Now it happened on a Sabbath day that Jesus was walking through some grainfields. His disciples picked off some heads of grain, rubbed them in their hands and ate [the kernels]. [Note: It was an accepted practice for people in that day to be permitted to do this as they walked along paths bordering a grainfield]. But certain Pharisees said, "Why are you doing what is against the law of Moses on the Sabbath day?" And Jesus answered them, "Have you never read about what King David did when he and his men were hungry [I Sam. 21:6]; read more.
how he entered the house of God [i.e., the Temple] and took some 'Bread of Presence' and ate it, and also gave some to his men to eat? [This practice] was not permissible according to the law of Moses, [since the bread was reserved] only for the priests." Then He said to them, "The Son of man is lord [i.e., has authority over] the Sabbath day."


In His teaching Jesus said, "Look out for the experts in the law of Moses, who like to walk around in long [flowing] robes and to receive special greetings at the open shopping markets and to occupy the principal seats in the synagogues and the head places at dinner tables. They consume widows' houses [i.e., by foreclosing on them] and [then] cover it up by offering lengthy prayers. These people will receive a more severe judgment."

Then Jesus said to His disciples in the hearing of all the people, "Look out for the experts in the law of Moses, who like to walk [around] in long [flowing] robes and love the special greetings they receive at the open shopping markets, and the principal seats in the synagogues, and the head places at dinner tables. They consume widows' houses [i.e., by foreclosing on them] and [then] cover it up by offering lengthy prayers. These people will receive a heavier judgment."


And Jesus entered the synagogue again and there He met a man with a deformed hand. And the Pharisees were watching Him to see if He would heal the man on the Sabbath day, so that they could [find a reason to] accuse Him. And He said to the man whose hand was deformed, "Step forward." read more.
Then He said to the Pharisees, "Is it permissible by the law of Moses to do something good, or something harmful on the Sabbath day? To save a life or to kill it?" But they did not reply. And when He had looked around at them with righteous indignation, being grieved over their stubbornness, He said to the man, "Reach out your hand." And when he reached it out, his hand was restored [to normal use]. And the Pharisees immediately went out and conferred with the Herodians against Jesus, plotting how they could kill Him. [Note: These Herodians were members of a political party favoring King Herod]

And it happened on another Sabbath day, when Jesus entered the synagogue to teach, that a man was there whose right hand was deformed. And the experts in the law of Moses were watching Him to see if He would heal [someone] on the Sabbath day, so they could figure out how to accuse Him. But He knew what they were thinking. Then He said to the man with the deformed hand, "Get up, step forward in front of everyone." So, he got up and stepped forward. read more.
Then Jesus said to them, "I ask you, is it permitted by the law of Moses to do something good or to do something harmful on the Sabbath day? To save a life or to destroy it?" Then He looked around at all of them [there] and said to the man, "Reach out your hand." And [when] he did this, his hand was restored [to normal use]. But the experts in the law of Moses and the Pharisees became furious and began discussing among themselves what they could do to Jesus.

Jesus left there and went into their [i.e., the Pharisees'] synagogues, and there He saw a man with a deformed hand. They asked Him, "Is it permissible by the law of Moses to heal someone on a Sabbath day?" He answered them, "Which one of you who has [only] one sheep, and it fell in a ditch, would not reach down and lift it out [even] if it were on a Sabbath day? read more.
Of how much more value then is a man than a sheep? Therefore, it is permissible by the law of Moses to do what is good on a Sabbath day." Then Jesus said to the man "Reach out your hand." And when he stretched it out, it became normal, just like the other one. But the Pharisees left and began discussing together how they could arrange to kill Him.


After Jesus returned to Capernaum several days later, it became known that He was [back] at home [i.e., possibly at the house of Peter and Andrew, where He was staying. See 1:29]. And there were so many people gathered to listen to His message that there was no room for any more [in the courtyard] around the doorway. Then some people came, bringing a man afflicted with paralysis, who was being carried by four friends. read more.
And when they were unable to get near Jesus, because of the [large] crowd, they removed [a section of] the roof [directly above Him]. [Note: The roof was a flat area, where people retired for rest, prayer, etc., and easily accessible from an outside stairway]. And when they had broken open [a sizable hole], they lowered the cot on which the paralyzed man was lying. When Jesus saw [the evidence of] their faith, He said to the paralyzed man, "Son, your sins are forgiven." But certain experts in the law of Moses, who were sitting there, began reasoning in their minds, "Why does this man talk this way? He is speaking against God. Who can forgive sins except one, that is, God?" And immediately Jesus perceived in His spirit what they were reasoning in their minds and said to them, "Why are you reasoning like this in your minds? Which is easier, to say to the paralyzed man, 'your sins are forgiven,' or to say 'get up, pick up your cot and walk'? But, so you will know that the Son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins (He then said to the paralyzed man), I say to you, get up, pick up your cot and go home.'" So, he got up and immediately picked up his cot and walked out in front of them all, so that everyone was amazed and gave honor to God, saying, "We have never seen anything like this before."

And it happened on one of those days [in Capernaum. See Mark 2:1], as He was teaching, that some Pharisees [i.e., a strict sect of the Jewish religion] and teachers of the law of Moses, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem, were sitting around [i.e., listening to Him]. And the power of the Lord was with Him, enabling Him to heal people. Just then [four] men [See Mark 2:3] brought a paralyzed man on a cot and attempted to place him in front of Jesus. But because they could not find a [suitable] way to get him in [to the house] because of the people crowded [around], they went up to the housetop [Note: This was a flat area, where people retired for rest, prayer, etc., with a stairway accessible from the outside] and lowered the man on his cot through the roof tiles into the presence of Jesus. read more.
And when He saw the evidence of their faith, He said, "Man, your sins are forgiven." Then the experts in the law of Moses and the Pharisees began to reason [in their minds], saying, "Who is this man who speaks things against God [i.e., by claiming the ability to forgive sins]? Who can forgive sins except God only?" But Jesus perceived their reasonings and answered them, "Why are you reasoning in your hearts? Which is easier; to say [to the paralyzed man], 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Get up and walk'? But so you will know that the Son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins, (He then said to the paralyzed man), 'I say to you, get up, pick up your cot and go home.'" So, immediately he stood up in front of them and picked up what he had been lying on [i.e., his cot], and went home, giving honor to God. And everyone was filled with amazement; they gave honor to God and were overwhelmed with reverence, saying, "We have seen incredible things today."

[Upon His arrival] they brought to Him a man afflicted with a paralytic disease, [being carried on his cot. See Mark 2:3]. When Jesus saw [the evidence of] their faith [i.e., the man's four friends breaking open the roof and lowering him through it. See Mark 2:4-5], He said to the paralytic, "Son, cheer up, your sins are forgiven." Seeing this, certain experts in the law of Moses said to themselves, "This man is speaking against God." Knowing what they were thinking, Jesus said, "Why are you having such evil thoughts in your minds? read more.
For which is easier, to say 'Your sins are forgiven,' or [to say] 'Get up and walk?' But in order that you may know that the Son of man has authority to forgive people's sins on earth, (then He said to the man afflicted with paralysis), 'Get up, pick up your cot and go home.'" So, the man got up and went home. But when the large crowds saw [what had happened], they were filled with deep reverence and gave honor to God for giving such authority to men.


He then left them and went out of the city [of Jerusalem] to Bethany [Note: This was a small village near Bethphage] and stayed there [i.e., probably at the home of Mary, Martha and Lazarus. See John 11:1]. Now in the morning, as Jesus returned to the city [of Jerusalem], He became hungry. Upon seeing a fig tree along side of the road, He approached it [i.e., expecting to find fruit on it], but found nothing but leaves. He said to the tree, "There will not be fruit on you ever again." Immediately the fig tree withered up. read more.
When His disciples saw this, they marvelled, saying, "How could the fig tree wither up so suddenly?" Jesus answered, "Truly I tell you, if you have faith, without doubting, you will not only [be able to] do what was done to this fig tree, but even if you tell this mountain, 'Be lifted up and thrown into the ocean,' it will happen. And everything you ask for in prayer you will receive, if you have [enough] faith."

On the next day, when they were going from Bethany [to Jerusalem], Jesus became hungry. Upon seeing in the distance a leafy fig tree, He approached it in hope of finding something on it [to eat]. But when He got there He found nothing but leaves on it, for it was not the season for figs [yet]. Therefore, He said to the tree, "From now on no one will ever eat fruit from you." Now His disciples heard Him say this.

The next morning, [as they returned to the city], they passed by the fig tree and saw that it had withered, clear down to its roots. Then Peter remembered [what Jesus had done to the fig tree on a recent occasion], and said to Him, "Rabbi [i.e., Teacher], look, the fig tree you cursed [the other day] has withered up." Jesus replied to him, "You should have faith in God.


Then right after that the Holy Spirit drove Jesus out into the desert. He spent forty days in this desert where He was put to the test by Satan. He was with wild animals, and angels ministered to His needs [while there].

Josiah had descendants named Jechoniah and his brothers, [near] the time when [the people of Judah] were taken away to Babylon.

Then Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan River [i.e., where He had been immersed. See 3:21] and was led by the Holy Spirit [See Matt. 4:1] into the desert. During the forty days He was being put to the test by the devil, He did not eat anything; then after it was over He was [very] hungry. Then the devil said to Him, "If you are the Son of God, command this stone to turn into bread." read more.
But Jesus answered him, "It is written [Deut. 8:3], 'A person is not to live by [eating] bread only.'" Then he led Him up [i.e., to a high mountain. See Matt. 4:8] and showed Him all the world's kingdoms in a fleeting instant. And the devil said to Him, "I will give you full authority [over them] and their splendor, for it has [all] been granted to me and to whom I want to give it. Therefore, if you will worship in front of me it will all be yours." And Jesus answered him, "It is written [Deut. 6:13], 'You are supposed to worship the Lord, your God, and serve only Him.'" Then the devil led Jesus to Jerusalem and placed Him on the elevated wing of the Temple and said to Him, "If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written [Psa. 91:11-12], 'He will put his angels in charge of you, to protect you,' and 'They will lift you up with their hands so you do not trip over a stone.'" And Jesus answered him, "It is said [Deut. 6:16], 'You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.'" And when the devil had finished every test, he left Jesus until a [later] time.



Then after these things happened, Jesus went out [i.e., probably walking along a street] and saw a publican [Note: This was a person with a bad reputation for dishonest tax collecting activities] named Matthew [i.e., the same as Levi. See Mark 2:14] sitting at the toll booth [collecting taxes] and said, "Become my follower." So, Matthew gave up everything, got up and followed Jesus.

Then Jesus went out again, walking along the shore of the lake, and [when] all the crowd came out to Him, He taught them. And as He walked along He saw Levi [i.e., the same person as Matthew. See Matt. 9:9], the son of Alphaeus, sitting at the toll booth [i.e., collecting taxes]. He said to him, "Become my follower." And he got up and followed Him.


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?" But they kept quiet for they had been arguing with one another over which one of them was the greatest. 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]. read more.
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, "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." [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." 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. For the person who is not against us is for us. 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. 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]. 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 is absent from many manuscripts}}. (OMITTED TEXT) 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 is absent from many manuscripts}}. (OMITTED TEXT) 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]. 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. 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)]. "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].

Then a dispute developed among Jesus' disciples as to which one of them was the greatest. When Jesus knew what they were disputing about in their minds, He took a small child and placed him at His side, 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]." read more.
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." But Jesus said to him, "Do not try to stop him, for the person who is not against you is for you."


Then Jesus entered the Temple of God and drove out all those who bought and sold things there. He upset the tables of the cashiers [i.e., those who exchanged foreign coins] and the benches of those who sold pigeons [for sacrifices].

Then Jesus entered the Temple in Jerusalem, and after looking around at everything [there], He left for Bethany with the twelve apostles, since it was evening by then. [Note: Jesus stayed overnight at Bethany during the week prior to His crucifixion. See verse 19].

Then Jesus entered the Temple and began to drive out those who sold [things there],


Jesus then called the twelve apostles together and gave them power and authority over all evil spirits and [the ability] to heal diseases. And He sent them out to preach the [coming] kingdom of God and to heal sick people. 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"]. read more.
And whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave that place. 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] So, they left and went throughout the villages preaching the good news and healing people everywhere.

[But] He marveled at the people's lack of faith. So, He traveled and taught throughout the [surrounding] villages. Then Jesus called to Him the twelve apostles and sent them out two by two. He gave them authority over evil spirits and ordered them not to take anything with them during their travels, except a walking stick. They were to take no food, no traveling bag [for personal belongings], and no money in their money belts, read more.
but were to wear sandals and take only one coat. And He said to them, "Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave that place. And the people from whatever place that does not welcome you or listen to you, when you leave there, shake the dust off from under your shoes as evidence against them." [Note: This was a Jewish custom showing disdain and intended to suggest their unworthiness]. Then they went out and preached that people should repent [i.e., change their hearts and lives]. And they drove out many evil spirits and applied [olive] oil to [the heads of] many sick people and healed them.


Then certain experts in the law of Moses and some Pharisees answered Jesus, saying, "Teacher, we would like to see you perform a [supernatural] sign." But He said to them, "It is [only] an evil and unfaithful [i.e., to God] generation of people that looks for a [supernatural] sign. And there will not be any sign given to it except the [supernatural] sign [demonstrated in the life] of Jonah, the prophet. For just like Jonah was in the stomach of the huge fish for three days and nights, so the Son of man will be in the heart of the earth [i.e., the cave-tomb] for three days and nights. read more.
The people of Nineveh will stand up on the judgment day along with the people of this generation and will condemn them because they repented [i.e., changed their hearts and lives] when hearing the preaching of Jonah [See Jonah 3:5-10], and [now] Someone greater than Jonah is here [i.e., Jesus]. The queen of the South [Note: This queen was from Sheba, I Kings 10:1, which was probably in Arabia] will stand up on the judgment day along with the people of this generation and will condemn them because she came from a great distance to hear [and see] Solomon's wisdom [I Kings 10:1ff] and [now] Someone greater than Solomon is here [i.e., Jesus]. But when an evil spirit has been driven out of a person, it roams through desert regions trying to find rest but cannot find it. Then it says [to itself], I will return to my house which I came out of [i.e., the body of the person it dominated]. But when it returns [to that body] it finds it empty, cleaned out and [newly] decorated. Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits, more evil than itself, and they reenter [the body] and [begin to] live there, so that the latter state of that person becomes worse than the former [state]. It will be the same way with the people of this evil generation."

Then others, trying to test Him, asked Him to perform a [supernatural] sign from heaven. But, knowing their thoughts, Jesus said to them, "Every kingdom [plagued] with internal division will end in ruin. And a household divided from within will fall. And if Satan also is divided against himself, how [then] can his kingdom stand? I tell you this because you are saying that I drove out evil spirits by [the power of] Beelzebub. read more.
But, if I drive out evil spirits by [the power of] Beelzebub, by whom do your followers drive them out? So, they will be your judges. But, if I drive out evil spirits by the finger of God [i.e., by God's direct, supernatural intervention], then [that is evidence that] the kingdom of God has come into your midst [i.e., by my presence and ministry]. When a fully armed strong man guards his own courtyard [i.e., homestead], his possessions are safe. But when someone stronger than he attacks him and overpowers him, he takes away all the armament the strong man relied on, and [then] divides up his storehouse of possessions. [Note: The word here translated "possessions" may be translated "arms" so the meaning could be "divides up his armament"]. The person who is not on my side is [actually] against me. And the person who does not gather [people to me] is [actually] driving them away [from me]. "When an evil spirit has been driven out of a man, it roams through desert regions trying to find rest, but [when it] cannot find any, it says [to itself], 'I will return to my house from which I came [i.e., the body of the person it dominated].' But when it returns [to that body] it finds it cleaned out and [newly] decorated. Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits, more evil than itself, and they reenter [the body] and [begin] to live there, so that the latter state of that person becomes worse than the former state." And it happened as He said these things that a certain woman called out to Him from the crowd, saying, "The woman who gave you birth and nursed you is [certainly] blessed." But Jesus said, "Yes, but those who listen to God's message and obey it are [more] blessed." And when the crowds thronged around Jesus, He began saying, "This generation of people is evil, [for] it is looking for a [supernatural] sign. But no [such] sign will be given to it except the sign [demonstrated in the life] of Jonah. For just like Jonah became a sign to the people of Nineveh [Note: Nineveh was the capital of ancient Assyria], so the Son of man will also be [a sign] to this generation of people. The queen of the South [Note: This queen was from Sheba, which was probably in Arabia. See I Kings 10:1] will stand up on the judgment day, along with the people of this generation, and will condemn them because she came from a great distance to hear [and see] Solomon's wisdom [I Kings 10:1ff] and [now] Someone greater than Solomon is here [i.e., Jesus]. The people of Nineveh will stand up on the judgment day with the people of this generation and will condemn them because they repented [i.e., changed their hearts and lives] when hearing the preaching of Jonah [Jonah 3:5-10] and [now] Someone greater than Jonah is here [i.e., Jesus]. "No one lights an [olive oil] lamp and [then] places it in a hidden place or under a bushel-sized container, but on its stand, so that those who enter [the room] can see [by] the light. Your eye is [like] a lamp to your body [i.e., your life]. When your eye sees things correctly, [then] your whole body [i.e., your entire life] is illuminated [i.e., directed into proper conduct]. But when it sees things wrongly, [then] your body [i.e., your life] is also full of darkness [i.e., is not being lived properly]. Look therefore [to see] whether or not the light that is in you [i.e., your perspective on things] might [actually] be darkness [i.e., a distorted perspective]. If therefore your whole body [i.e., your entire life] is full of light [i.e., sees and responds to things correctly], with no blind spots [i.e., areas where you do not see and act correctly], your body [i.e., your life] will be fully illuminated [i.e., directed into proper conduct] just like a bright, shining lamp illuminating you [i.e., enabling you to see and respond to things properly]."


Then the mother of Zebedee's sons [i.e., James and John] came to Jesus with her sons and, bowing down in reverence before Him, made a request of Him. He responded to her, "What would you like me to do for you?" She answered, "Appoint my two sons to sit at your right side and at your left in your [coming] kingdom." But Jesus replied to her, "You [really] do not know what you are asking for. Are you able to drink the cup [i.e., of suffering] that I am about to drink?" They [i.e., James, John and their mother. See Mark 10:35ff] answered, "[Yes] we are able to." read more.
He said to them, "Indeed you will drink my cup [of suffering]. But it is not my prerogative to appoint who sits at my right side and at my left, but rather these places are for those to whom it has been assigned by my Father." When the other ten apostles heard this, they became very upset with the two brothers. Then Jesus called all the apostles to Him and said, "You are aware that rulers among the [unconverted] Gentiles lord it over their own people and their important men domineer over them [as well]. But it will not be this way among you, for whoever would like to become important among you will become your servant. And whoever would like to be first [in prominence] among you will be your slave. Even so, the Son of man did not come to be served [by others] but to be the servant [of others], and to sacrifice His life as a ransom price to purchase many people [i.e., back from Satan]."

Now James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came over to Jesus and said to Him, "We would like you to do for us whatever we ask you." And He said to them, "What do you want me to do for you?" They answered Him, "Appoint one of us to sit at your right side and the other at your left side [when you come] in splendor." read more.
But Jesus said to them, "You [really] do not know what you are asking for. Are you able to drink the cup [i.e., of suffering] that I will drink? Or [are you able] to be immersed with the immersion that I am [to be] immersed with?" [i.e., to be overwhelmed with agony]. And they said to Him, " [Yes], we are able to." And Jesus said to them, "The cup [of suffering] that I [will] drink, you [also] will drink. And the immersion [with agony] with which I am [to be] immersed, you [also] will be immersed. But it is not my prerogative to appoint who sits at my right side and at my left, but [those places] are for people to whom it has been assigned [by the Father]." When the ten other apostles heard this, they became very upset with James and John. Jesus called them [i.e., probably all twelve apostles] to Him and said, "You are aware that those who are regarded as rulers among the [unconverted] Gentiles lord it over their own people, and their important men domineer over them [as well]. But it is not [to be] this way among you, for whoever would like to become important among you will be your servant. And whoever would like to be first [in prominence] among you, will be your slave. For the Son of man did not come to be served [by others] but to be the servant [of others], and to sacrifice His life as a ransom price for many people [i.e., to purchase them back from Satan]."


Then, as someone [i.e., of His disciples. See Mark 13:1], spoke of how the Temple was decorated with beautiful stones and objects dedicated as gifts, Jesus said, "As for these things you are looking at, the time will come when there will not be one stone left on another here that will not be thrown down." So, they asked Him, saying, "Teacher, when will these things [you just spoke of] happen? And what will be the sign [that indicates] when these things are about to be fulfilled?" read more.
And He replied, "Pay attention, so that you are not led astray [from the truth]. For many [false teachers] will come, claiming to be me, and saying, 'I am [the Christ],' and 'The time is near.' [But] do not go after them. And when you hear of wars and uprisings [going on], do not be afraid, for such things must necessarily happen first. But the end will not come right away." [Note: By "the end" here Jesus probably alludes to the downfall of Jerusalem, in AD 70, with its attending destruction of the Temple buildings]. Then Jesus said to His disciples, "Nations will wage war against one another and kingdoms will attack one another. And great earthquakes will happen, and at various places there will be famines and disease epidemics. And there will be fearful events and great [supernatural] signs from heaven. But before all these things happen, the authorities will grab hold of you, and persecute you, and turn you over to the synagogues and prisons [i.e., for punishment and confinement]. They will take you in front of kings and governors for being loyal to me. It will result in [an opportunity for] witnessing to them. Determine in your hearts, therefore, not to plan ahead how you will answer them [when interrogated], for I will give you a mouth [i.e., the ability to speak properly] and wisdom [i.e., the knowledge of what to say], which none of your opponents will be able to resist or speak against. But you will be turned over [i.e., to the authorities for punishment] even by [your own] parents and brothers and relatives and friends. And they will [even] put some of you to death. And you will be hated by all people for being loyal to me. However, not one hair of your head will be lost. [But], by holding out steadfastly, you will gain your life. [Note: This means either "preserve your earthly life," or "attain never ending life"]. "So, when you see Jerusalem surrounded by [Roman] armies, then you will know that her total destruction is near. Then those [of you] in Judea are to run away into the [nearby] mountains. And those who are inside of the city are to leave it [immediately]. And those who are in the countryside should not enter the city. For these are times for punishment [i.e., to be inflicted on Jerusalem], so that everything written [i.e., by the prophets] may be fulfilled [i.e., about Jerusalem's destruction. See Dan. 9:26-27]. It will be too bad for pregnant women and those who are nursing [babies] in those days! For there will be great distress in this land [i.e., Judea, and especially Jerusalem], and raging anger [will be shown] against these people [i.e., by the Roman armies]. And people will die by the sword and be led captive into all nations. And Jerusalem will be trampled on by the [unconverted] Gentiles [i.e., by the Romans and later by others] until the times of [domination by] the Gentiles are fulfilled. "Then [Note: This event answers to the "immediately" of Matt. 24:29, and suggests the next major event on God's calendar] there will be [supernatural] signs [evident] in the sun and moon and stars. And on earth [there will be] distress among nations; they will be perplexed by the roaring of the ocean's churning waves. [Note: Probably this is figurative language for highly agitated conditions on earth]. Men will become despondent from fear, and from dreading the [terrible] things which will come upon the earth, for the forces of the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great splendor [Note: This no doubt refers to the second coming of Christ. See II Pet. 3:9-10; Matt. 24:30-31; Rev. 1:7]. But when these things begin to happen, stand up and lift up your heads [i.e., in anticipation], for your redemption [i.e., deliverance, either from destruction or condemnation] is getting closer." Then Jesus told them a parable: "Look at the fig tree, as well as all [other] trees: When they begin to sprout their leaves you know when you look at them, without being told, that summer is near. In the same way also, when you see these things happening [i.e., the above mentioned "signs"], you can know that the kingdom of God [i.e., either its heavenly phase or the destruction of Jerusalem] is near. Truly I tell you, the people of this generation will not [all] die off before all these things [i.e., mentioned above] happen. Although the sky and the earth will pass away [See II Pet. 3:10], my words will not pass away [i.e., they will certainly come true]. "But pay attention to yourselves so that your hearts do not become overburdened by carousing, and drunkenness, and the worries of life. [If you do], that 'day' [i.e., Jesus' second coming and judgment] will arrive suddenly, like a trap [i.e., which catches an animal by surprise]. For that is the way this 'day' will arrive for everyone [else] living on the entire earth. But you should be alert at all times, offering earnest prayers, so that you will be strong enough to escape all these things that will happen, and to appear [acceptable] in front of the Son of man [on that day]."


After these things happened, Jesus showed Himself in a different form to two disciples [Note: One was named Cleopas. See Luke 24:13-18], as they were walking out into the countryside [i.e., to the village of Emmaus, about seven miles northwest of Jerusalem. See Luke 24:13]. And these two men went and told about their encounter with Jesus to the rest of the disciples, but they did not believe them either.

Then, on that same day, two disciples [See Mark 16:12] were [walking along], going to a village named Emmaus, which was about seven miles [northwest] of Jerusalem. And they were discussing with each other everything that had [recently] happened. And it happened, as they were talking and discussing together, that Jesus came near [them] and began walking along with them. read more.
But they were [miraculously ?] prevented from recognizing who He was. Then Jesus said to them, "What have you been talking about while [you were] walking along together?" And they stopped [suddenly], looking dejected. Then one of them, named Cleopas, answered Jesus, "Are you the only visitor in Jerusalem who does not know what all happened there the past few days?" And He replied, "What things?" And they said to Him, "The things concerning Jesus, from Nazareth, who was a prophet speaking powerful words and performing powerful deeds in front of God and all the people. And the leading priests and our leaders turned him over to be sentenced to death and had him crucified. But we had hoped that he was the one who would purchase the Israelites back [from their bondage]. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things happened. However, certain women of our group, who went to the grave site early [Sunday morning] amazed us. When they did not find Jesus' body they came and told us that they had also seen a vision of angels who said Jesus was alive. Then some of our companions [i.e., Peter and John. See John 20:2-9] went to the grave site and found things just as the women had said, but they did not see Jesus [either]." Then Jesus said to them, "You foolish men! How slow your minds are to believe everything the prophets have spoken [in their writings]! Was it not necessary for the Christ [i.e., God's specially chosen one] to suffer these things, and [then] to enter His glorious state [with the Father]?" Then, beginning from [the writings of] Moses and all the prophets, Jesus explained to the two men about the things referring to Himself [contained] in all these Scripture passages. And as they got close to the village [i.e., of Emmaus], where the men were going, Jesus appeared as though He were planning to continue on. So, the men urged Him to remain with them, saying, "Stay with us [i.e., overnight], because it is getting late and the day is almost over." So, He went [to their house] to stay with them. And it happened when Jesus had reclined at the dinner table with them [Note: See Matt. 23:6], that He took a [small] loaf of bread, asked God's blessing on it, then broke it and gave [pieces] to the two men. [Immediately] their eyes were opened [i.e., they were given insight] so they could recognize Him. And [just then] He disappeared from their view [Note: The Greek says, "became invisible," suggesting that He vanished miraculously]. Then the two men said to each other, "Were not our hearts stirred up within us [i.e., our emotions thrilled] when Jesus spoke to us along the road and opened up the Scriptures [to our understanding]?" So, they got up at once and returned to Jerusalem and found the eleven apostles gathered together with some other disciples. The apostles [or, some think the two men] were saying, "The Lord truly has risen and has appeared to Simon [i.e., Peter]." Then the two men recounted what happened along the road and how Jesus was recognized by them when He broke the loaf of bread.


Then Jesus entered the Temple of God and drove out all those who bought and sold things there. He upset the tables of the cashiers [i.e., those who exchanged foreign coins] and the benches of those who sold pigeons [for sacrifices]. And He said to them, "It is written [Isa. 56:7], 'My house [i.e., the Temple] will be called a house for prayer', but [Jer. 7:11 says], 'You have made it a hideout for thieves.'"

Then Jesus entered the Temple and began to drive out those who sold [things there], saying to them, "It is written [Isa. 56:7], 'And my house [i.e., the Temple] will be a house for prayer, but [Jer. 7:11] 'You have made it a hideout for thieves.'"


But when the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced [the objections of] the Sadducees, they gathered together [i.e., to continue plotting against Jesus. See verse 15]. One of them, a teacher of the law of Moses, asked Him a question [in an attempt] to test Him. "Teacher, which one is the greatest commandment in the law of Moses?" he asked. read more.
Jesus replied, [Deut. 6:5] "'You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the foremost and greatest commandment. A second one, similar to it is [Lev. 19:18], 'You must love your neighbor the same way that you love yourself.' The entire law of Moses and the prophets hinge on these two commandments."

Then one of the experts in the law of Moses [Note: Matt. 22:34 identifies him as being a Pharisee also], came and heard Jesus and the Sadducees discussing together [i.e., the subject of the resurrection], and knowing that Jesus had refuted the Sadducees successfully, asked Him, "Which commandment is foremost, above all the others?" And Jesus answered, "The foremost one is this [Deut. 6:4-5], 'Hear this, you Israelites, the Lord our God is the only Lord, and you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength.' read more.
The second one is this, 'You must love your neighbor the same way that you love yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these [i.e., love for God and man]." The expert in the law of Moses said to Jesus, "Truly, Teacher, you are right in saying that God is [the only] one and that there is no other God but Him. And that to love Him with all one's heart, with all one's understanding, and with all one's strength, and to love one's neighbor the same way he loves himself, are far more [important] than all the burnt offerings and sacrifices [in the world]." When Jesus saw that this man answered wisely, He said to him, "You are not [very] far from the kingdom of God." And after that, no one dared to ask Him any more questions.


Then the governor's soldiers took Jesus to Pilate's headquarters and assembled the entire company [i.e., about men] in front of Him. They stripped off His clothing and placed a scarlet robe on Him [Note: Mark 15:17 calls this a "purple" robe because in that day, any color with a mixture of "red" in it was often called "purple," so the use of "scarlet" was appropriate]. Then they made a wreath out of thorns and placed it on His head and put a stick in His right hand. They knelt down in front of Him and mocked Him, saying, "Hey, king of the Jews!" read more.
And they spat on Him and took the stick and beat Him on the head with it. And after mocking Him [some more], they removed the [scarlet] robe and put His own clothes back on Him. Then they led Him away to crucify Him.

Then the soldiers led Jesus away to the courtyard of the governor's headquarters, where they assembled the entire battalion. They placed a purple robe on Him [Note: Matt. 27:28 calls this a "scarlet" robe. In that day, any color with a mixture of "red" in it was often called "purple"], and making a wreath out of thorns, they placed it on His head. Then they began "greeting" Him with "Hey, king of the Jews " read more.
They beat His head with a stick, spat on Him, knelt down before Him and [mockingly] worshiped Him. And when they had mocked Him, they took the purple robe off of Him and put His own clothing [back] on Him. Then they led Him out to crucify Him.


Then as Jesus returned [i.e., to the northwest shore of the lake, probably to the vicinity of Capernaum], a crowd was waiting for Him and welcomed Him.

When Jesus had crossed over again in a boat to the other side [i.e., to the northwest shore of the lake, probably in the vicinity of Capernaum], a large crowd gathered around Him along the shore of the lake.

Then Jesus entered a boat and crossed [back] over [Lake Galilee] and came to His own city [i.e., Capernaum].


And Jesus left there and went into the regions of Tyre and Sidon [i.e., cities on the northwest coast of Palestine]. Just then a Canaanite woman came out of that area [Note: Mark 7:26 calls her a Syrophoenician Gentile], crying, "O Lord, son of David, have pity on me. My daughter is seriously troubled by an evil spirit." But He did not say a word to her. His disciples came and begged Him, "Send her away, for she is [continually] shouting at us [as we go along]." read more.
He answered them, "I was sent only to the straying sheep of the Israelites." But she came and worshiped Him, saying, "Lord, help me." And He answered [her], "It is not proper to take bread away from the children and throw it to the dogs." But she replied, "Yes, Lord, but even dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their owner's table." Then Jesus answered her, "O, woman, how great your faith is. May what you want be done for you." And her daughter was healed that very moment.

And from there Jesus got up and went away into the region of Tyre and Sidon. He entered a house but did not want anyone to know it. However, He could not keep it secret. But just then a woman whose little daughter was dominated by an evil spirit heard about Jesus and came and fell down at His feet. Now the woman was a Greek [i.e., a Gentile], a Syrophoenician by nationality. [Note: This was a region just north of Galilee and consisted of Syria and Phoenicia]. She begged Him to drive out the evil spirit from her daughter. read more.
So, He said to her, "Children should be the first ones to eat until they are full, for it is not proper to take the children's food and throw it to the dogs." But she answered Him, "Yes Lord, but even the dogs under the table eat the crumbs dropped by the children." And He said to her, "Because you have said this, go on your way; the evil spirit has left your daughter." And she went away to her house and found her child lying on her bed with the evil spirit gone from her.


[Then] Jesus told them another parable, saying, "The kingdom of heaven is similar to a person who sowed seed in his field, but while his workers were asleep his enemy came and scattered weed seeds throughout his wheat field and then left. But when the [green] shoots sprouted up and produced grain, weeds appeared also. read more.
The farmer's hired hands came and asked him, 'Did you not plant [only] good seed in your field? Where did the weeds come from [then]?' And he said to them, 'An enemy [of mine] has done this [to me].' The hired hands replied, 'Do you want us then to go and gather up the weeds?' But the farmer said, 'No, for while you are gathering up the weeds, you might root up [some of] the wheat with them. Let both of them grow together until it is time for the harvest; then at that time, I will tell the harvesters, "Gather up the weeds first, and bind them up into bundles to burn. But gather the wheat into my barn."'" Jesus told them another parable, saying, "The kingdom of heaven is similar to a seed from the mustard tree which a man took and planted in his field. This seed is indeed [one of] the smallest of all seeds, but when it is [fully] grown, it is larger than [other] plants, and [even] becomes a tree, so that the birds of the sky come and roost on its branches." Then He told them another parable: "The kingdom of heaven is similar to yeast, which a woman worked into a batch of dough [i.e., the amount was over half a bushel], until [the dough] was completely leavened [by it]." Jesus spoke all these things to the crowds with parables. He did not say anything to them without using a parable. [This was] so that what was spoken by the prophet would be fulfilled, when he said [Psa. 78:2], "I will open my mouth [to speak] with parables. I will say things that have been hidden from the beginning of time." He then left the crowds and went into the house. [While there] His disciples came to Him, and said, "Explain to us [the meaning of] the parable of the weeds in the field." And He answered them, "The person who planted the good seed is the Son of man, and the field [represents] the world. The good seed [represents] the children who belong to the kingdom, and the weeds [represent] the children who belong to the evil one [i.e., the devil]. The enemy who scattered the weed seeds is the devil; the harvest time is the end of the world; and the harvesters are angels. Just like the weeds were gathered up and burned with fire, so it will be at the end of the world. The Son of man will send out His angels and they will gather out of His kingdom all those people who cause others to fall away [from God] and those who [continue to] sin. He will throw these people into the fiery furnace where there will be crying and excruciating pain. Then the people who did what was right will shine out like the sun in their Father's kingdom. The person who has ears [to hear with] ought to listen [to this] carefully. "The kingdom of heaven is similar to a person finding a treasure hidden in a field. After finding it, he was so happy he hid it [again], then went out and sold everything he owned so he could buy that field. "Again, the kingdom of heaven is similar to a [retail] merchant searching to buy some fine pearls. When he found an extremely valuable one he went and sold all that he owned and bought it. "Again, the kingdom of heaven is similar to a drag-net [for fishing] that was cast into the lake and gathered all kinds [of fish]. When it became full, the fishermen dragged it up onto the shore. Then they sat down and, [sorting their catch], placed the good [i.e., edible fish] into containers, but threw out the bad [i.e., inedible ones]. At the end of the world it will be that same way. The angels will come and divide the sinful people from the ones who did what was right, and throw the sinful ones into the fiery furnace where there will be crying and excruciating pain." "Have you understood all these things?" [Jesus asked]. "Yes," they said to Him. Then He said to them, "Therefore every expert in the law of Moses who has been made a disciple of the kingdom of heaven is similar to a [wealthy] homeowner who brought [both] new and old things out of his supply of goods." And it happened, when Jesus had finished [giving] these parables, He went away from that place.

And Jesus said, "The kingdom of God is like a farmer who scattered seed on the ground, then went to bed and got up the next day to find that the seed had sprouted and grown, yet he did not know how it happened. The soil yields its crop, first the green sprout, then the ears of grain, and then the kernels in the ears. read more.
But when the grain ripens the farmer wields his sickle because harvest time has come." And He continued to speak, "What shall I compare the kingdom of God to? Or, what parable will [best] illustrate it? It is similar to a seed from the mustard tree which, when planted in the ground, even though it is the least [significant] of all seeds on earth, becomes larger than all other plants. It develops huge branches so that the birds of the sky can roost in their shade." And He spoke "the word" to them [i.e., the crowds] with as many such parables as they were able to receive. And He did not speak to them [i.e., concerning the kingdom] without using a parable, but He explained everything to His own disciples privately.


Jesus left there and went [over] near Lake Galilee. He went up into a mountain and sat down there. Large crowds came to Him, bringing crippled, blind, deaf-mute, disabled and many other [sick] people and laid them down at His feet. And He healed [all of] them, so that the crowd marveled when they saw deaf-mutes talking, injured people healed, crippled people walking and blind people seeing. And they honored the God of the Israelites [for such great miracles].

Again He left the region of Tyre and traveled [north] through Sidon, [then back south] to Lake Galilee, and through the middle of Decapolis. And they brought to Him a deaf man who had a speech impediment and they begged Him to place His hand on him [for healing]. So, Jesus took him away from the crowd by himself and put His fingers into the man's ears. Then He spit and touched the man's tongue [i.e., with His saliva] read more.
and, looking up to heaven, He sighed and said, "Ephphatha," which means, "Be opened." And [immediately] the man's hearing was restored, his speech impediment was removed and he began speaking clearly. Then Jesus ordered the people [who witnessed the miracle] not to tell anyone [about it], but the more He urged them not to, the more widely they publicized it. And they were utterly amazed, saying, "He has done everything just right; He makes even the deaf to hear and the mute to speak."


But Jesus replied to him, "A certain man prepared a lavish supper and invited many [guests]. When the supper was about ready, he sent his slave out to tell those who were invited, 'Come, for everything is [now] ready.' Then all of them, in the same way, began to excuse themselves [from attending]. The first one said to the host, 'I just bought some land and I need to go out and look it over, so please excuse me [from attending the supper].' read more.
And another person said, 'I just bought five teams of oxen and I need to go and test them out, so please excuse me [from attending the supper].' And the third person said, 'I just got married, so I cannot attend [the supper].' Then the slave returned and told his master about these things. Then the master of the house became angry and said to his slave, 'Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring people who are poor, and handicapped, and blind and crippled in here [i.e., to the supper].' And the slave said, 'Master, I did what you ordered me to do, and still there is room [at the dinner table].' Then the master said to the slave, 'Go out into the roads and along the brushy trails and urge people to attend [the supper] so that my house will be full [of guests].' For I tell you, not one of those who were invited will [even] taste my supper."

Jesus again spoke in parables to them [i.e., the Jewish leaders], saying, "The kingdom of heaven is similar to a certain king who held a wedding reception for his son. He sent his servants out to call those who had been invited to the wedding reception, but they refused to come. read more.
Again he sent out other servants saying, 'Tell those who were invited, look, I have already prepared the dinner; my cattle and [other] well-fattened animals have been butchered and everything is ready. [Now] come to the wedding reception dinner.' But they made fun of it, and went on about their business, one to his farm, another to his store. But the rest of them grabbed his servants, physically abused them and [finally] killed them. The king became furious and sent his army to destroy these murderers and burn their city. Then he told his servants, 'The wedding is ready, but those who were invited to it [proved they] were not worthy [to attend]. Now go to the main crossroads of the highways and invite everyone you find there to the wedding reception.' So, his servants went out to the highways and gathered in all those who could be found, both bad and good, so that the wedding [reception] was full of guests. But when the king came in [to the dining hall] to meet the guests, he noticed a man who was not wearing a [proper] wedding outfit. He said to the man, 'Friend, how did you get in here without wearing the proper wedding outfit?' And he could not say a word. Then the king said to his servants, 'Tie him up, hand and foot, and throw him into [a place of] outer darkness where there will be crying and excruciating pain.' For many people are called [by God] but [only those] few [who respond] are chosen [by Him]."


"It is an evil and spiritually unfaithful generation of people [that keeps on] looking for a [supernatural] sign; but there will be no [such] sign given to it except the sign of Jonah [i.e., being in the huge fish for three days]." Then He left them and went away. Now the disciples came to the other side [i.e., to the east side of the lake], but had forgotten to bring food [with them]. Jesus said to them, "Pay attention and watch out for the leavening [effect] of the Pharisees and Sadducees." read more.
And they began reasoning among themselves, saying, "[Why be concerned about yeast since] we did not bring [any] bread?" Jesus, being aware of their thoughts, said, "O, you people with [such] little faith! Why are you reasoning among yourselves about not having bread? Do you not understand yet or remember that five thousand people [were fed] with five loaves of bread and how many baskets [of pieces] were picked up [afterward]? Or that four thousand people [were fed] with seven loaves of bread and how many baskets [of pieces] were picked up [afterward]? How is it that you do not understand that I was not speaking to you about [physical] bread? But [rather I meant] watch out for the yeast [i.e., the influence] of the Pharisees and Sadducees." Then they understood that He was not telling them to watch out for the yeast in [physical] bread, but for the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

Then He left them and boarded a boat again and sailed to the other side [i.e., the east side of Lake Galilee]. Now Jesus' disciples had forgotten to take [any] food [with them], and had only one loaf of bread in the boat. Then Jesus ordered them, saying, "Pay attention and watch out for the leavening [effect] of the Pharisees and Herod." [Note: By "Herod" is probably meant the Herodians, who were a party favorable to King Herod and, along with the Pharisees and Sadducees, were out to get Jesus. See Matt. 16:6]. read more.
And they began reasoning with one another, saying, " [Why be concerned about yeast since] we do not have [any] bread?" Jesus, being aware of what they were thinking, said, "Why are you reasoning about not having any bread? Have you not yet perceived or understood? Have your hearts become insensitive? Even though you have eyes, do you not see? And even though you have ears, do you not hear? And do you not remember? When I divided the five loaves of bread among the five thousand persons, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you gather up?" They said to Him, "Twelve baskets full." He again asked, "And when the seven loaves were divided among the four thousand persons, how many large basketfuls of broken pieces did you gather up?" And they said to Him, "Seven large basketfuls." Then He said to them, "Do you not understand yet?"


And it happened when the time came for Jesus to be taken up [to heaven] that He firmly determined to go to Jerusalem. 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]. 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]. read more.
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?" But He turned to them and spoke sternly. {{Some manuscripts add "You do not know what kind of a spirit you represent, for the Son of man did not come to destroy men's lives but to save them"}} So, they went to another village. 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." 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." And [then] He said to another person, "Become my follower." But he replied, "Lord, allow me to go and bury my father first." 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." 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]. 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."

Now it was almost time for the Jewish Festival of Tabernacles [Note: This was also called "Festival of Shelters," and was one of three principal, annual Jewish festivals and commemorated the occasion of the Israelites living in tents or shelters during their forty year wandering in the desert]. Then Jesus' [half-] brothers said to Him, "You should leave here and go to Judea so your disciples [there] can see the [supernatural] deeds you are performing. For no one does things secretly if he wants to become known publicly. Since you are doing such things, show yourself to the world." read more.
For even Jesus' [half-] brothers did not believe in Him [i.e., at that time]. So, Jesus said to them, "My time has not yet come [i.e., to be revealed to the world as its Savior], but it is always your time [i.e., they could go to the festival anytime without rousing opposition]. The world cannot hate you, but it hates me because I testify about its deeds, that they are evil. You men go [on] up to the festival, but I am not going up yet [Note: Although "yet" appears in only a few manuscripts, it seems to be the proper idea here], because my time has not yet come. [See verse 6]. Then after saying these things, Jesus remained in Galilee [i.e., for awhile longer. See next verse]. But after His [half-] brothers had gone up to the Festival, Jesus also went up, but secretly instead of openly. So, the Jews [i.e., their authorities] began searching for Him at the Festival, and were saying, "Where is he?"


Some Pharisees came to Him, [attempting] to put Him to a test. They said, "Is it permissible by the law of Moses for a man to divorce his wife for any reason [he chooses]?" And He answered them, "Have you not read [Gen. 1:27; 5:2] that when God created [mankind as] male and female, He said [Gen. 2:24], 'For this reason [i.e., since He made one woman for one man], a man will leave [the home of] his father and mother and will cling to his wife, [so that] the two of them will [then] become one flesh [i.e., united in such a close relationship as to constitute one body]?' read more.
So, [upon becoming husband and wife] they no longer function [entirely] as two persons, but [as] one body. Therefore, those whom God [so] joins together [in the marriage bond], no person must [ever] separate." They replied, "Why then did Moses order [a man] to provide a legal divorce decree [Deut. 24:1], and then divorce his wife?" Jesus said to them, "Moses permitted you to divorce your wives [only] because of the rebellious spirits you [Jews] had. But this was not how it was [intended to be] from the beginning [i.e., when God created one woman for one man]. And I tell you, whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman commits sexual unfaithfulness [toward her], unless the reason for the divorce was sexual unfaithfulness [on his wife's part]. And the person who marries a woman who has been divorced commits sexual sin with her [i.e., because she is still rightfully married to her first husband]." His disciples [then] said to Jesus, "If this is the way it has to be between a man and his wife, it is not worth getting married." But He replied, "Not all men can accept such an arrangement [i.e., not marrying], but it is [only] for those who have the capacity for accepting it. For there are eunuchs [i.e., men who do not have normal sexual activity] who are born that way; then there are eunuchs who were made that way by undergoing a surgical operation; then there are [also] eunuchs who purposely chose to avoid normal sexual activity for the sake of [ministering in] the kingdom of heaven. Whoever can accept such an arrangement [i.e., of not marrying], should do so."

Some Pharisees [i.e., a strict sect of the Jewish religion] came to Him [and attempted] to test Him by asking, "Is it permissible by the law of Moses for a man to divorce his wife?" And He answered them, "What did Moses command you [to do]?" They replied, "Moses allowed us to provide a legal divorce decree and [then] to divorce her." read more.
But Jesus said to them, "He wrote you this commandment [only] because of the rebellious spirit of you [Jews]. But from the beginning of creation God made mankind male and female. For this reason [i.e., since he made one woman for one man] a man will leave [the home of] his father and mother and will cling to his wife and the two of them will [then] become one flesh [i.e., united in such a close relationship as to constitute one body], so that [upon becoming husband and wife] they no longer function as two persons but as one body. Therefore, those whom God so joins together [in the marriage bond], no person must ever separate." And when they were in the house, His disciples asked Him about this matter again. And He said to them, "Whoever divorces his wife and marries another [woman] commits sexual unfaithfulness [toward her]. And if she herself divorces her husband and marries another [man], she commits sexual unfaithfulness [toward him]."


When Jesus perceived what they were doing He withdrew from that place. Many people followed Him and He healed all of them. Then He urged them not to reveal His [true] identity, so what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah would be fulfilled when he said, read more.
[Isa. 13:1ff] "Look, see my [i.e., God's] servant whom I have chosen; my dear One [i.e., Jesus] with whom my soul is very pleased: I will put my Holy Spirit on Him, and He will proclaim judgment to the [unconverted] Gentiles. He will not be contentious nor shout out [loudly]. Neither will anyone hear His voice [raised] in the streets. He will not [even] break a wilted stalk or put out a smoldering [lamp] wick until He exercises judgment [upon mankind through the Gospel] in order to bring about victory [i.e., in people's lives]. So, in His name the [unconverted] Gentiles will have hope."

[Then] Jesus withdrew [from there] with His disciples and went to the lake [i.e., Lake of Galilee], being followed by a large crowd from Galilee. Also, a large crowd from Judea, Jerusalem, Idumaea, the east side of the Jordan River, and from around Tyre and Sidon [i.e., cities on the northwest coast of Palestine] came to Him, having heard about the great things [i.e., miracles] He had been performing. He told His disciples to have a small boat waiting for Him [i.e., from which He could address the people. See 4:1], to prevent His being thronged by the large crowd. read more.
For He had healed so many people that large numbers of them who were plagued with serious illnesses were crowding around Him in hope of getting to touch Him. And whenever they saw Him, [people possessed by] evil spirits fell to the ground in front of Him, shouting, "You are the Son of God." But He sternly ordered them not to reveal His identity.


[After] leaving Nazareth [i.e., a major town in Galilee], He came to live in Capernaum, [a city] beside Lake Galilee, near the districts of Zebulun and Naphtali. [This was] so that what Isaiah the prophet had spoken would be fulfilled, saying, [Isa. 9:1-2] "The districts of Zebulun and Naphtali, near the lake, beyond [i.e., where it enters] the Jordan in Galilee, [the territory] of the Gentiles; read more.
the people who lived [there] in [spiritual] darkness saw a great light. Light shone upon these people, who lived in an area that was under the shadow of death."

Jesus then went to Nazareth where He had been brought up. He entered the synagogue on the Sabbath day, according to His custom, and stood up to read [the Scriptures]. The book [i.e., actually a scroll] of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. He opened the book and found the passage where it was written [Isa. 61:1f], "The Holy Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He anointed me [i.e., specially chose me] to preach good news to poor people. He has sent me to proclaim freedom to those who are captives [i.e., to sin]; recovery of sight to the [spiritually as well as physically] blind; to set free those who are oppressed [i.e., by Satan] and read more.
to proclaim the year of the Lord's acceptance [i.e., the time when people would become His obedient followers]." Then He closed the book, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were focused on Him. He began speaking to them [saying], "Today this [passage of] Scripture has been fulfilled as you listened to it." So, everyone spoke well of Him and marvelled at the gracious words coming from His mouth. They said, "Is he not Joseph's son?" And He replied to them, "No doubt you will tell me this proverb, 'Doctor, heal yourself,' and 'Perform [the miracles] here in your own home town also that we heard you did in Capernaum.'" And He said, "Truly I tell you, no prophet is acceptable in his own home town. But it is true when I tell you, [while] there were many widows [living] in Israel during the time of Elijah, when it did not rain for three and a half years, causing a great famine over the entire land, Elijah was not sent to any of them, except to a widow in Zarephath [i.e., a Gentile town] in the region of Sidon. And [while] there were many people with infectious skin diseases [living] in Israel during the time of Elisha the prophet, none of them was healed except Naaman, the Syrian [who was also a Gentile]." Then everyone in the synagogue became extremely angry when they heard these things. They rose up and threw Jesus out of the city, leading Him to the top of the hill on which the city was built, in order to throw Him down [from a cliff]. But He [just] walked right through them and went on His way. Then He went down to the Galilean city of Capernaum and taught the Jews on the Sabbath day.


Now while still in prison, John [the Immerser] heard about the things Christ was doing, [so] he sent [word] through his disciples and said to Jesus, "Are you the One who was to come, or should we look for someone else?" Jesus answered them, "Go and tell John the things you are hearing and seeing; read more.
[how] blind people are receiving back their sight, and crippled people are walking [again], and people with infectious skin diseases are being healed, and deaf-mutes are hearing [and speaking (?) again], and people are being raised [from the dead], and poor people are having the good news preached to them. The person who does not find an occasion for having doubts about my identity is fortunate indeed." As the messengers [sent by John. See Luke 7:27] went on their way, Jesus began to talk to the crowds about John. [He said], "What did you expect to see when you went out into the desert? A tall stem swaying in the wind? What did you expect to see? A man dressed in fancy clothes? Look, people who wear fancy clothes live in kings' palaces. Why did you go out [to the desert]? To see a prophet? Yes, I should say [he was], and much more than a prophet. He is the one about whom it was written [Mal. 3:1], 'Look, I [will] send my messenger on ahead of you. He will prepare the pathway in front of you.' It is true when I tell you, among [all] those born of women, no one greater than John the Immerser has come along. Yet the least significant person in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. And from the days of John the Immerser the kingdom of heaven is experiencing turmoil, for violent men are [trying to] take control of it [by bringing it into existence] forcibly [i.e., before its appointed time. See Acts 1:6-7]. For all of the prophets and the law of Moses prophesied [of this kingdom] up until the time of John. And if you are willing to accept [this truth], this person [i.e., John] fulfills [the prophecy of] the coming of Elijah. [See Mal. 4:5-6] The person who has ears to hear with ought to listen [to this] carefully. But what should I compare the people of this generation with? They are like children sitting in the open shopping market, who call out to their playmates, We [pretended like we] were making music [at a wedding] but you did not dance; we [pretended like we] were wailing [at a funeral] but you did not beat your chest [in mourning].' For when John came, he did not eat or drink [on festive occasions] and people said, 'He is dominated by an evil spirit.' [Then] the Son of man came eating and drinking [at festive occasions] and they said, 'Look, He is a glutton and a drunkard and a friend of tax collectors and worldly people.' It proves that [God's] wise counsel is right by the way things turn out."

Then the disciples of John [the Immerser] told him all about these things [i.e., what Jesus was doing]. So, John called to him two of his disciples and sent them to the Lord to ask, "Are you the One who was to come, or should we look for someone else?" And when these men came to Jesus they said, "John the Immerser has sent us to you to ask, 'Are you the One who was to come, or should we look for someone else?'" read more.
At that very time Jesus was healing many people from diseases, those plagued with serious illnesses and those dominated by evil spirits. He [also] restored sight to many blind people. So, Jesus answered them, "Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard; [how] blind people are receiving back their sight, and crippled people are walking [again], and people with infectious skin diseases are being healed, and deaf-mutes are hearing [and speaking (?) again], and people are being raised [from the dead], and poor people are having the good news preached to them. The person who does not find an occasion for having doubts about my identity is fortunate indeed." And when the messengers sent by John left, Jesus began saying to the crowds about John, "What did you expect to see when you went out into the desert? A tall stem swaying in the wind? What did you expect to see? A man dressed in fancy clothes? Look, people who wear elaborate outfits and bask in luxury live in kings' palaces. But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I will say [he is], and much more than a prophet. He is the one about whom it was written [Mal. 3:1], 'Look, I [will] send my messenger on ahead of you. He will prepare the pathway in front of you.' And I tell you, among [all] those born of women, there is no one greater than John [the Immerser], yet the least significant person in the kingdom of God is greater than he." And when all the people, together with the tax collectors, heard this they praised God for being so just, and were immersed with the immersion [preached] by John. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law of Moses, who would not be immersed by John, rejected God's purpose for themselves. "What then should I compare the people of this generation with?" [Jesus asked]. "And what are they like? They are like children sitting in the open shopping market, calling to one another, saying, 'We [pretended we] were making music [at a wedding] but you did not dance; we [pretended we] were wailing [at a funeral] but you did not cry [along with us].' For when John the Immerser came, he did not eat bread or drink wine [on festive occasions] and you said, 'He is dominated by an evil spirit.' [Then] the Son of man came eating and drinking [at festive occasions] and you said, 'Look, he is a glutton and a drunkard, and a friend of tax collectors and worldly people.' It proves that [God's] wise counsel is right in the eyes of all of her children [i.e., in the eyes of people known for their wisdom]."


After this Jesus and His disciples went to the country-[side] of Judea and there they remained and immersed people.



Then He looked at His disciples and said, "Those of you who have a [sense of personal] need are blessed, because the kingdom of God belongs to you. Those of you who now have an appetite [i.e., for doing what is right] are blessed, because you will be satisfied [eventually]. Those of you who cry now [i.e., over your sins] are blessed, because you will laugh [i.e., when you are forgiven later]. You are blessed when men hate you and withdraw their fellowship from you and speak abusively about you and reject your name as evil, [all] for being loyal to the Son of man. read more.
Be happy at that time and jump for joy and realize that your reward in heaven will be great, for the forefathers [i.e., of your corrupt Jewish leaders] treated the prophets the same way. But it is too bad for you rich people because you have [already] received [all] the comforts [you are going to get]. It is too bad for you people who have plenty to eat now, because you will be hungry [later on]. It is too bad for you people who are laughing now, because you will grieve and cry [later on]. It is too bad for you people when everyone speaks well about you, because the forefathers said the same thing about the false prophets. But I tell you people who are listening [to me], love your enemies and do good things to those who hate you. [Ask God's] blessing on those who curse you; pray for those who treat you spitefully. Whoever hits you on one side of the face, allow him [to hit you on] the other side also; and when someone takes away your coat, do not stop him from also taking away your shirt [i.e., if he insists on it]. Give to everyone who asks you [for something] and do not demand that he bring back your possessions that he takes away. And whatever you would like people to do to you, do the same thing to them. And if you love [only] those who love you, what thanks do you deserve for doing that? For even worldly people love those who love them. And if you do good things [only] to those who do good things to you, what thanks do you deserve for doing that? For even worldly people do that much. And if you lend something [only] to those people from whom you expect to have it returned, what thanks do you deserve for doing that? Even worldly people lend to worldly people expecting to get the same things back. But love your enemies and do good things to them; and lend to them without expecting it to be returned, and your reward [i.e., from God] will be great and you will be [considered] sons of the Highest [i.e., God]. For He is kind to unthankful and evil people [as well]. You people should be merciful just like your Father is merciful. And do not pass [hypocritical] judgment [on other people. See Matt. 7:1-5] and you will not receive such judgment [on yourselves]. And do not condemn [others] and you will not be condemned [yourselves]. Release people [i.e., from guilt for offending you] and you will be released [i.e., by God?] Give [to others] and you will have [things] given to you. People will pour into your lap a full measure [of goods]; it will be pressed down, shaken together and running over [the edges]. Because the standard you use in giving [to others] will be the standard used [by them or God] in giving back to you." Then Jesus told them a parable [i.e., a brief story to illustrate His teaching]: "Can a blind person lead a blind person? Will not both of them fall into a ditch? The disciple is not more important than his teacher, but when every person becomes complete, [then] he will be like his teacher. And why do you look for the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye but ignore the board in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, 'Brother, let me take that speck of sawdust out of your eye,' when you cannot see the board in your own eye? You hypocrite, take the board out of your own eye first; then you will be able to see clearly enough to take out the speck of sawdust that is in your brother's eye. For there is no healthy tree that produces bad fruit; nor is there a diseased tree that produces wholesome fruit. For each tree is recognized by its own fruit. For people do not harvest figs from thorn bushes, nor grapes from a brier bush. The good person produces good things from the goodness stored up in his heart. And the evil person produces bad things from the evil [stored up in his heart]. For his mouth speaks what his heart is filled with. And why do you call me 'Lord, Lord,' and [yet] not obey what I tell you to do? Every person who comes to me and listens to my words and obeys them, I will show you who he is like. He is like a man building a house, who dug deep to lay the foundation on rock. And when a flood came the river pounded against that house, but could not shake it because it had been well built. But the person who hears [my words] and does not obey them is like a man who built a house on the ground, without a foundation. [When] the river pounded against it, immediately it collapsed and the destruction of that house was complete."


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." But Jesus said to him, "Do not try to stop him, for the person who is not against you is for you."

[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." 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.


So, they went to Capernaum [Note: This was a city in Galilee that later became Jesus' headquarters while in Galilee. See verse They were amazed at His teaching for He taught them as one who had [real] authority, and not as the experts in the law of Moses. And just then there appeared in the synagogue a man dominated by an evil spirit. He shouted out, read more.
"What business do we have with you, Jesus from Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are; [you are] God's Holy One." Jesus spoke sternly to him, saying, "Be quiet, and come out of him." And the evil spirit caused the man to have a convulsion, then shouted with a loud voice and came out of him. And all the people [in the synagogue] were so amazed they began asking one another, "What is this, some new teaching? And it is spoken with such authority He even orders evil spirits, and they obey him." And news about Him quickly spread everywhere, [even] into all of Galilee and the surrounding regions.

Then He went down to the Galilean city of Capernaum and taught the Jews on the Sabbath day. They were amazed at His teaching for He spoke with authority. Now there was a man in the synagogue who was dominated by the spirit of an evil demon [Note: These "evil spirits" or "demons" were powerful beings sent by Satan to inhabit people, causing physical, mental and spiritual harm to them]. He was shouting with a loud voice, read more.
"Ha! What business do we have with you, Jesus from Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are; [you are] God's Holy One." Then Jesus spoke sternly to the evil spirit [in the man], saying, "Be quiet, and come out of him." And when the evil spirit had thrown the man down in front of them, it came out of him, without causing any harm. And everyone became amazed and began saying to one another, "What is he saying? For he orders the evil spirits with authority and power to come out [of people], and they do." Then a report about Him spread to the entire surrounding region.


Then Jesus again went across [to the east side of] the Jordan River, to the place where John had first immersed people, and stayed there. Many people came to Him and were saying, "It is true that John did not perform any [miraculous] signs, but everything he said about this man was true." So, many people there believed in Jesus.

So, the sisters sent [someone] to Him, saying, "Look, Lord, the person you love [i.e., your dear friend, Lazarus] is sick." But when Jesus heard this, He said, "This illness will not result in [his] death, but was intended to bring honor to God, so that the Son of God would be honored by it." Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister [Mary] and [her brother] Lazarus. read more.
So, when He heard that Lazarus was sick, He stayed where He was [i.e., on the east side of the Jordan River. See 10:40] for two [more] days. Then, after this, He said to His disciples, "Let us go [back] to Judea again." The disciples replied to Him, "The Jews [there] have just been trying to stone you, and you are going back again?" Jesus answered, "Are there not twelve hours in a day? [i.e., hours of daylight]. If a person walks during daylight, he will not stumble because he can see [by] the sun's light. But if he walks at night he [might] stumble, because there is no light [to see by]. [Note: These words have a figurative meaning as Jesus is speaking about His mission in life]. After saying these things He said to His disciples, "Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going to wake him up." But the disciples said to Him, "Lord, if he is [only] asleep, he will get well." Now Jesus had been talking about Lazarus' death, but the disciples thought He was referring to normal sleep. So, Jesus said plainly, "Lazarus is dead. miles northeast of Jerusalem, near Samaria]. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there [when he died], so that [now] you will believe [i.e., when you see him miraculously raised up]. But let us go to him [now]." Then Thomas, which means, "The Twin," said to his fellow disciples, "Let us go too, so we can die with Him." [i.e., by being stoned to death with Jesus. See 11:8].


Then some Pharisees and experts in the law of Moses came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, "Why do your disciples violate the tradition of the [Jewish] elders? For they do not [ceremonially] wash their hands before eating [their meals]." And He answered them, "Why do you also violate the commandments of God by [following] your traditions? read more.
For God said, [Ex. 20:12], 'Give honor to your father and mother.' and [Ex. 21:17], 'Whoever says bad things about his father or mother should surely be put to death.' But you say, 'Whoever says to his father or mother, I have given to God the money I could have helped you with;' this person does not honor his father [or mother]. You have made God's message useless by [thus enforcing] your traditions. You hypocrites! Isaiah prophesied accurately about you, saying [Isa. 29:13], These people [claim to] honor me with their lips [i.e., by what they say], but their heart is far from [honoring] me. They are worshiping me for nothing [because they are] teaching principles that are [merely] the requirements of men.'" Then Jesus called the crowds to come to Him, and He said to them, "Listen and understand. It is not what enters the mouth of a person that [spiritually] corrupts him, but what proceeds out of his mouth that [spiritually] corrupts him." Then His disciples came and said to Him, "Do you know that the Pharisees were upset [with you] when they heard [you say] that?" But He answered and said, "Every plant that my heavenly Father did not plant will be uprooted. [So], let these Pharisees alone; they are blind leaders. And if a blind person leads a blind person, both of them will fall into a ditch." And Peter said to Him, "Explain the parable to us." And He replied, "Are you still unable to understand? Do you not realize that whatever enters a person's mouth goes into his stomach and [eventually] passes out into the toilet? But the things that come out of a person's mouth come from his heart. These are what [spiritually] corrupt a person. For evil thoughts, murder, extramarital affairs, sexual immorality, stealing, perjury, slander --- [all these] come from a person's heart, and are what corrupt him [spiritually]. But eating [a meal] with [ceremonially] unwashed hands does not [spiritually] corrupt him."

The Pharisees and some experts in the law of Moses, who had come from Jerusalem, gathered around Jesus. They had observed some of His disciples eating their food with contaminated, that is, [ceremonially] unwashed hands. (For the Pharisees and all the Jews would not eat anything unless they first scrubbed their hands [i.e., up to the wrists] in accordance with the [long-established] tradition of the Jewish elders). read more.
And when they returned from the open shopping markets they refused to eat [anything] until they washed themselves [or "it," that is, the food, thoroughly]. There were also many other traditions which they [strictly] observed, like washing cups, pots and copper kettles [thoroughly].) [Note: The most accurate Greek manuscripts do not add "and beds" in this verse]. The Pharisees and experts in the law of Moses asked Jesus, "Why do your disciples not live according to the traditions of the Jewish elders, but [instead] eat their food with contaminated [i.e., ceremonially unwashed] hands?" And He answered them, "Isaiah prophesied about you hypocrites very well when he wrote [Isa. 29:13], 'These people honor me with their lips [i.e., by what they say], but their heart is far from [honoring] me. They are worshiping me for nothing because they are teaching principles which are [merely] the requirements of men.' You disregard the commandment of God and [yet] hang onto the traditions of men." And He said to them, "You are good at rejecting the commandment of God so you can keep your traditions. For Moses said, [Ex. 20:12] 'Give honor to your father and mother,' and [Ex. 21:17 says], 'Whoever says bad things about his father or mother should surely be put to death.' But when you people say, 'If someone says to his father or mother, [the money] I could have helped you with is Corban; in other words, [it is] given to God,' you are not allowing him to do anything for his father or mother anymore. You are making God's message useless by [enforcing] the tradition you have been following. And you do many things like that." Then He called the crowd to Him again and said to them, "Listen to me, all of you, and understand [what I am saying]. There is nothing that enters a person's body from the outside that can [spiritually] corrupt him, but it is what proceeds out of a person's life that [spiritually] corrupts him." {{Verse is absent from most ancient manuscripts}}. And when He had gone into the house away from the crowd His disciples asked Him about this parable. He said to them, "Are you also as lacking in understanding [as the others]? Do you not understand that whatever enters a person's body from the outside cannot [spiritually] corrupt him? It is because it does not go into his heart, but into his stomach, and [eventually] passes out into the toilet." By saying this He made all foods [ceremonially] acceptable. And He said, "Whatever proceeds out of a man's life is what [spiritually] corrupts him. For from within, out of people's hearts, proceed evil thoughts, sexual immorality, stealing, murder, extramarital affairs, greedy desires, wickedness, deceit, unrestrained indecency, envy, slander, arrogance and foolishness. All these evil things proceed from within [man's heart] and [spiritually] corrupt him."


The Pharisees and Sadducees came [and attempted] to test Jesus [by] asking Him to perform a [supernatural] sign from heaven. But He answered them, {[{[These words are omitted in most ancient manuscripts: "When the sky is reddish in the evening, you predict fair weather [for the next day]. And when the sky is reddish and overcast in the morning, you predict [that it will be] bad weather that day. You know how to interpret [weather] conditions from the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times [i.e., what will happen in the spiritual realm]"]}]}. read more.
"It is an evil and spiritually unfaithful generation of people [that keeps on] looking for a [supernatural] sign; but there will be no [such] sign given to it except the sign of Jonah [i.e., being in the huge fish for three days]." Then He left them and went away.

Immediately He boarded a boat with His disciples and crossed [to the west side of the lake], to the region of Dalmanutha. [Note: Matt. 15:39 says "Magadan," which was probably in the same vicinity as Dalmanutha]. The Pharisees and Sadducees [i.e., these were strict sects of the Jewish religion], came out and began disputing with Jesus, asking for a [supernatural] sign from Him, [in an attempt] to test Him. Then He sighed deeply in His spirit and said, "Why does this generation of people look for a [supernatural] sign? Truly I tell you, there will not be any [supernatural] sign given to this generation."



And when Jesus got close and saw the city [of Jerusalem], He cried over it, saying, "If [only] you people realized today those things which [could] lead [you] to peace! But now they are [being] hidden from your sight. For the days will come upon you when your enemies will build a dirt wall around you, surrounding you, and hemming you in on every side. read more.
They will throw you and your children, [who are] within your walls, to the ground and they will not allow one stone to remain on top of another in your city because you did not recognize that [God was] visiting you." [Note: This "visitation" refers either to the redemption which they had rejected or to the punishment of the siege and destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70].


Jesus called His disciples to Him and said, "I feel deeply moved over this crowd, because they have continued listening to me for three days now, and have nothing [left] to eat. I do not want to send them away hungry because they will become weak along the way." And the disciples said to Him, "Where will we get enough loaves of bread to feed a large crowd in [such] a deserted place [as this]?" Jesus replied, "How many loaves of bread do you have?" They said, "[We have] seven [loaves] and a few small fish." read more.
Then He ordered the crowd to sit down on the ground, and He took the seven loaves of bread and the fish and gave thanks to God for them. He divided the food and gave it to the disciples who, [in turn], distributed it to the crowds. They all ate until they were full; then gathered up seven baskets full of broken pieces which were left over. The number who ate were four thousand men, besides women and children. Jesus then sent the crowds away while He boarded a boat and crossed the lake to the region of Magadan [i.e., the west side of Lake Galilee].

In those days, when a large crowd again assembled [i.e., to listen to Jesus' teaching] and did not have anything to eat, Jesus called His disciples and said to them, "I feel deep pity for this crowd because they have continued listening to me for three days now and have nothing [left] to eat. And if I send them home hungry they will become weak on the way, because some of them have come a long distance." read more.
And His disciples replied to Him, "Where will a person get enough bread to feed these people in such a deserted place like this?" And He asked them, "How many loaves of bread do you have?" And they answered, "We have seven loaves." Then He ordered the crowd to sit down on the ground; he took the seven loaves, and after giving thanks to God [for them], He divided the food and gave it to His disciples to set in front of them. They [in turn] set it in front of the crowd. They [also] had a few small fish and after asking God's blessing on them, He ordered these also to be set in front of them. And they [all] ate until they were full, then gathered up seven baskets of broken pieces which were left over. The number [who ate] was about four thousand men [besides women and children. See Matt. 15:38]. Then Jesus sent them away.


And it happened, when Jesus had finished [giving] these parables, He went away from that place. And when He came to His home town [i.e., Nazareth], Jesus taught people in their synagogues to their amazement. They said, "Where did this man get [such] wisdom and [the ability to perform] these supernatural deeds? Is not he the carpenter's [i.e., Joseph's] son? [And] is not his mother named Mary, and his brothers [named] James, Joseph, Simon and Judas? read more.
And are not his sisters all [here] with us? Where then did he get all these things [i.e., wisdom, knowledge, miracles, etc]?" And they were led to doubt His true identity. But Jesus said to them, "A prophet does not go without being honored, except in His own home town and among His own family members." So, He did not perform very many supernatural deeds in that place because of the people's lack of faith.

Then Jesus went out from there and came to His home town [i.e., Nazareth] and His disciples went with Him. And when the Sabbath day came, He began teaching in the synagogue and many who heard Him were amazed, and asked [such questions as], "Where did this man get these things [i.e., knowledge, miracles, etc.]?" and "What kind of wisdom has been given to him?" and "What do these supernatural powers he performs mean? Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters living here among us?" And they were led to doubt His true identity. read more.
Then Jesus said to them, "A prophet does not go without receiving honor, except in his own home town, and among his own relatives, and among his own family members." And He could not perform any supernatural deed there [i.e., because of their lack of faith in Him], except He placed hands on a few sick people [i.e., accompanied by prayer ?] and healed them. [But] He marveled at the people's lack of faith. So, He traveled and taught throughout the [surrounding] villages.


[This is] a record of the family background of Jesus Christ, the descendant of David, who was the descendant of Abraham. [Note: The following is an incomplete lineage through Jesus' step-father Joseph]. Abraham had a son named Isaac; Isaac had a son named Jacob and Jacob's sons were Judah and his [eleven] brothers. Judah had sons named Perez and Zarah, [whose mother was] Tamar. Perez had a son named Hezron; Hezron had a son named Aram; read more.
Aram had a son named Amminadab; Amminadab had a son named Nahshon; Nahshon had a son named Salmon; Salmon had a son named Boaz [whose mother was] Rahab; Boaz had a son named Obed [whose mother was] Ruth; Obed had a son named Jesse, and Jesse had a son named David [who became] king [of Israel].David had a son named Solomon [whose mother was Bathsheba, the wife] of Uriah; Solomon had a son named Rehoboam; Rehoboam had a son named Abijah; Abijah had a son named Asa; Asa had a son named Jehoshaphat; Jehoshaphat had a son named Joram; Joram had a son named Uzziah; Uzziah had a descendant named Jotham; Jotham had a son named Ahaz; Ahaz had a son named Hezekiah; Hezekiah had a son named Manasseh; Manasseh had a son named Amon; Amon had a son named Josiah; Josiah had descendants named Jechoniah and his brothers, [near] the time when [the people of Judah] were taken away to Babylon. After the people [of Judah] were taken away to Babylon, Jeconiah had a son named Shealtiel; Shealtiel had a son named Zerubbabel; Zerubbabel had a son named Abiud; Abiud had a son named Eliakim; Eliakim had a son named Azor; Azor had a son named Sadoc; Sadoc had a son named Achim; Achim had a son named Eliud; Eliud had a son named Eleazar; Eleazar had a son named Matthan; Matthan had a son named Jacob; Jacob had a son named Joseph, who was the husband of Mary. Mary [alone] was the mother of Jesus, who is called the Christ. So, all the generations from Abraham to David were fourteen; from [the time of] King David to the people [of Judah] being taken away to Babylon were [approximately] fourteen generations and from [Judah] being taken away to Babylon to [the time of] Christ were [approximately] fourteen generations.

And Jesus was about thirty years old when He began to teach. (It was assumed that) He was the son of Joseph, who was the [legal] son of Heli [Note: A lineage through Jesus' mother Mary follows:] [Heli was] the son of Matthat, who was the son of Levi, who was the son of Melchi, who was the son of Jannai, who was the son of Joseph, who was the son of Mattathias, who was the son of Amos, who was the son of Nahum, who was the son of Esli, who was the son of Naggai, read more.
who was the son of Maath, who was the son of Mattathias, who was the son of Semein, who was the son of Josech, who was the son of Joda, who was the son of Joanan, who was the son of Rhesa, who was the son of Zerubbabel, who was the son of Shealtiel, who was the son of Neri, who was the son of Melchi, who was the son of Addi, who was the son of Cosam, who was the son of Elmadam, who was the son of Er, who was the son of Jesus, who was the son of Eliezer, who was the son of Jorim, who was the son of Matthat, who was the son of Levi, who was the son of Symeon, who was the son of Judas, who was the son of Joseph, who was the son of Jonam, who was the son of Eliakim, who was the son of Melea, who was the son of Menna, who was the son of Mattatha, who was the son of Nathan, who was the son of David. [And David] was the son of Jesse, who was the son of Obed, who was the son of Boaz, who was the son of Salmon, who was the son of Nahshan, who was the son of Amminadab {{Some ancient manuscripts insert "who was the son of Admim"}}, who was the son of Arni, who was the son of Hezron, who was the son of Perez, who was the son of Judah, who was the son of Jacob, who was the son of Isaac, who was the son of Abraham. [And Abraham] was the son of Terah, who was the son of Nahor, who was the son of Serug, who was the son of Reu, who was the son of Peleg, who was the son of Eber, who was the son of Shelah, who was the son of Cainan, who was the son of Arphaxad, who was the son of Shem, who was the son of Noah, who was the son of Lamech, who was the son of Methuselah, who was the son of Enoch, who was the son of Jared, who was the son of Mahalaleel, who was the son of Cainan, who was the son of Enos, who was the son of Seth, who was the son of Adam. [And Adam] was the son of God.


After Jesus had finished telling the people all He had to say, He went into Capernaum. And a certain military officer's slave [was there], whom the officer highly valued. This slave was [so] sick that he was about to die. And when the officer heard about Jesus, he sent [some] Jewish elders to Him asking that He come and heal his slave. read more.
And when they came to Jesus, they begged Him earnestly, saying, "This officer deserves that you should do this for him [i.e., heal his slave], for he loves our nation and he is the one who built the synagogue for us." So, Jesus went with them. And when He got close to the military officer's house, the officer sent [his] friends to Jesus, saying to Him [i.e., speaking on behalf of the military officer], "Sir, do not trouble yourself, for I do not deserve for you to come into my house; miles southeast of Nazareth]. His disciples and a large crowd [also] went with Him. [and] for the same reason I did not think I deserved to come to you either. So, [just] say the word and [I know] my slave will be healed. For I also am a man [who was] placed under the authority [of others], and I have soldiers [who serve] under me. I can say to this one, 'Go,' and he goes; and to another one, 'Come,' and he comes; and to my slave, 'Do this,' and he does it." And when Jesus heard these things, He was amazed and said to the crowd that was following Him, "I tell you, I have never found [anyone with] such great faith, not [even] among the Israelites." And those who were sent [i.e., the officer's friends. See verse 6] returned to the house and found the slave completely well.

And when He had arrived at Capernaum, a military officer approached Him, begging, "Sir, my slave-boy is at home sick in bed with a paralyzing disease and in serious pain." Jesus said, "I will go and heal him." read more.
But the military officer answered, "Sir, I do not deserve for you to come into my house; just say the word and [I know] my slave-boy will be healed. For I also am a man [who serves] under the authority [of others], and I have soldiers [who serve] under me. I can say to this one 'Go,' and he goes, and to another one, 'Come,' and he comes, and to my slave 'Do this,' and he does it." And when Jesus heard this, He was amazed and said to those who were following [along], "It is true when I tell to you, I have never found [anyone with] such great faith, not [even] among the Israelites. And I [also] say to you, that many people will come from the east and the west and will sit down with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the children who [are supposed to] belong to the kingdom will be thrown out into the outer darkness where there will be crying and excruciating pain." And Jesus said to the military officer, "Go on your way; since you have believed [in my power to heal], what you desired will be done for you." And the slave-boy was healed that [very] hour.


But the eleven disciples [i.e., apostles] went to the mountain in Galilee where Jesus had ordered them to go.

After these things happened Jesus showed Himself to His disciples again at Lake Tiberias. [Note: This was another name for Lake Galilee]. Here is the way He did it. Simon Peter; Thomas, called "The Twin;" Nathaniel from Cana in Galilee; the sons of Zebedee [i.e., James and John] and two other disciples of Jesus were [all] together [at the lake].


And Jesus said, "I came to this world to judge [it], so that people who can not see [spiritually] will [be able to] see; and those who [think they can] see [spiritually] will become blind." Some Pharisees, who were with Jesus, heard [Him say] these things, and replied, "Are we blind, too?" Jesus said to them, "If you were [really] blind [i.e., unable to see spiritually], you would not be guilty of sin. But since you claim, 'We can see [fine],' you remain guilty of sin."

"Truly, truly, I tell you, the person who does not enter the sheep corral through the gate, but climbs over another way [i.e., over the fence], is a thief and a robber. [Note: "Thief" suggests quiet subtlety, while "robber" suggests open aggression]. But the One [i.e., Jesus is referring to Himself] who enters [it] through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep [Note: "Sheep" in this section refers to Jesus' followers]. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep respond to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out [of the corral]. read more.
After he has let his own [sheep] out, he walks on ahead of them, and they follow him because they recognize his voice. They will not follow a stranger, but will run from him, for they do not recognize the voice of strangers." Jesus told them this parable [i.e., a brief story to illustrate his teaching] but they did not understand what it meant. So, Jesus said to them again, "Truly, truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep [i.e., to enter the corral]. All those who came before me were thieves and robbers and the sheep did not listen to them. I am the gate; if anyone enters [the corral] through me, he will be saved [i.e., from condemnation], and will find pasture [i.e., will receive spiritual nurturing]. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came so that people could have life to its fullest. "I am the good shepherd; and a good shepherd [is willing] to die for the sheep. The person who is [only] a hired hand, and not the shepherd, [and] who does not own the sheep [himself], sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away. So, the wolf attacks the flock and scatters [the sheep]. [The reason] he runs away is because he is a hired hand and does not [really] care about the sheep. I am the good shepherd and I know my sheep [intimately], and they know me [that way], just like the Father knows me [intimately] and I know the Father [that way]. And I [am about to] give up my life for the sheep. I have other sheep [also] which are not [presently] in this corral; I must lead them, too. They will hear my voice and become one flock [i.e., with the others], having one shepherd. [Note: This probably refers to believing Gentiles becoming God's people, along with the Jews]. The Father loves me because I [am about to] give up my life, so that I can take it back again. No one is taking it away from me, but I am giving it up voluntarily. I have the right to give it up and I have the right to take it back again. I received the commandment to do this from my Father." The Jews who heard these words became divided again [i.e., over their meaning]. Many of them said, "This man is dominated by an evil spirit; he is crazy, why listen to him?" Others said, "These are not the words of someone dominated by an evil spirit. Can an evil spirit restore sight to a blind person?"


Then He appeared to James [Note: This was probably Jesus' half-brother. See Acts 12:17; Gal. 1:19], and then to all of the apostles. [See John 20:26].

Now, following His death on the cross [and resurrection], Jesus appeared alive [to His apostles] for forty days, and demonstrated by many convincing proofs [that He had been raised bodily from the dead]. [During that time] He also spoke to them about the [coming] kingdom of God. [One day, as He was] gathered with these apostles, He urged them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there until they received what the Father had promised them. (Jesus had previously discussed this with them). [See Luke 24:49]. For [Jesus had said, Matt. 3:11], "John immersed you [men] in water but [this time] you will be immersed in the Holy Spirit, and [it will happen] in just a few more days." read more.
When the apostles had come together, they asked [Jesus], "Lord, are you ready to restore the kingdom [of God] to [the nation of] Israel [at this time]?" Jesus replied, "You are not permitted to know the [specific] time or date [when this will happen]. For the Father has appointed it [to happen] when He determines [the right time]. But, you apostles will receive power when the Holy Spirit descends on you and [then] you will become My witnesses [i.e., to tell what you know] in Jerusalem, in [the countries of] Judea and Samaria, and [even] to the distant regions of the earth."


and He appeared to Cephas [i.e., Peter. See Luke 24:34], and then to the twelve apostles. [See Luke 24:33].

The apostles [or, some think the two men] were saying, "The Lord truly has risen and has appeared to Simon [i.e., Peter]."


Then Jesus said to His disciples, "There was a certain rich man who had a property manager who was reported to be squandering his possessions. So, he called his property manager in and said to him, 'What is this that I hear about you? Turn in a [full] report of [all] your financial transactions, for you are not working for me anymore.' Then the property manager said to himself, What am I going to do since my master is taking away my job? I am not strong enough to dig [i.e., as a farm laborer], and I am too ashamed to beg. read more.
I know what I will do, so when I am fired they [i.e., his master's customers] will welcome me into their homes. So, he called on each one of his master's customers and said to the first one, 'How much do you owe my master?' And he replied, 'Eight hundred gallons of [olive] oil.' And he said to him, 'Take your contract and quickly sit down and write in four hundred [gallons].' Then he said to another [customer], 'And how much do you owe [him]?' And he answered, 'One thousand bushels of wheat.' The property manager said to him, 'Take your contract and write eight hundred [bushels].' So, his master commended the dishonest property manager for his shrewdness. For worldly people are more shrewd in dealing with their own kind than are the people of light [i.e., God's people]. Therefore, I tell you, make friends for yourselves by using worldly wealth, so that when it fails [i.e., when you run out of money] they [i.e., the friends you made with its wise and benevolent use] may welcome you into the eternal [i.e., heavenly] dwelling places. [Note: The idea here seems to be that by your shrewd use of material possessions for the benefit of others, you are actually storing up treasures for yourself in heaven]. "The person who is trustworthy in regard to very small matters, [such as material possessions] is also [likely to be] trustworthy in regard to large matters, [such as spiritual values], and the person who does not do what is right in very small matters is also not [likely] to do what is right in large ones. If therefore you have not been trustworthy in worldly wealth, who will put you in charge of the true [spiritual] riches? And if you have not been trustworthy with what belongs to someone else, who will give you something of your own? No person can serve two masters, for he will either hate the one and love the other, or else he will cling to the one [i.e., as a close friend] and look down on the other. You cannot serve God and material things [at the same time].'"



But when the Festival was about half over, Jesus went up into the Temple and began teaching. Now the Jewish authorities were amazed, saying, "How can this man know so much, since he has never been educated?" So, Jesus answered them, "What I am teaching is not mine, but [it belongs] to Him who sent me [i.e., to God]. read more.
If anyone [really] desires to do what God wants, he will know whether my teaching comes from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority [only]. The person who speaks on his own authority is [just] trying to gain honor for himself. But the One who tries to gain honor from God, who sent Him, is [committed to] truth, and there is nothing false in His heart. Did not Moses give you the law, and yet not one of you is obeying it? Why are you trying to kill me?" [Someone from] the crowd answered, "You have an evil spirit [in you]; who is trying to kill you?" Jesus answered them, "I performed one [miraculous] deed and you were all amazed by it [i.e., the healing of the crippled man on the Sabbath day. See 5:1-9]. [Now] Moses gave you [the ordinance of] circumcision and you circumcise a man on the Sabbath day. (Although it was [first] required by [your] forefathers, and not Moses). If a person is circumcised on a Sabbath day so that the law of Moses can be observed [properly, then why] are you upset with me for restoring a person to complete health on a Sabbath day? Do not make judgments based [merely] on how things look, but make judgments on how they really are." Some of the people of Jerusalem said [about Jesus], "Is not this person the one they are trying to kill? And look, he is speaking openly and they are not saying anything to him [about it]. Can it be that the [Jewish] authorities know that he really is the Messiah [i.e., the Christ, God's specially chosen one]? However, we know where this man comes from, but when the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from." As Jesus was teaching in the Temple, He spoke out, and said, "You people [think you] know who I am and where I come from. I have not come on my own authority, but God, who sent me, is true and you do not know Him. I know Him because I came from Him, for He sent me." Then they [i.e., the authorities] tried to arrest Jesus, but no one laid a hand on Him because His time had not yet come. But many people in the crowd believed in Him, saying, "When the Messiah does come, will he perform more [miraculous] signs than this man has done?" The Pharisees [i.e., a strict sect of the Jewish religion] heard the crowd whispering these things about Him, so the leading priests and Pharisees sent some Temple guards to arrest Him. Therefore, Jesus said, "I will be with you for a little while longer, then I will go to the Father who sent me. You people will be looking for me, but you will not find me; and you will not be able to go where I will be." The Jews [i.e., the authorities] were saying among themselves, "Where will this man go that we will not be able to find him? Will he go where the Jewish people are scattered among the Greeks, and teach the Greeks? What did he mean by saying, 'You people will be looking for me, but will not find me; and you will not be able to go where I will be?'" Now on the last and greatest day of the Festival [of Tabernacles], Jesus stood up and spoke out, "If anyone is thirsty he should come to me for a drink. As the Scripture has recorded [Note: The following is not an exact quotation from the OT, but echoes Isa. 58:11 and Zech. 14:8], 'Streams of life-giving water will flow from the person's heart who believes in me.'" Now He said this about the Holy Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive [See Acts 2:38]. For [at that time] the Holy Spirit had not yet been given, since Jesus had not yet received splendor [in heaven]. When they heard these words some people in the crowd said, "Truly, this man is the prophet." [See note on 1:21]. Others said, "He is the Christ." But [still] others said, "What [do you mean]? The Christ will not come from Galilee, [will he]? Does not Scripture say [Micah 5:2] that the Christ will come as the descendant of King David, and from Bethlehem, the town where David lived?" So, a division arose among people in the crowd over Jesus. Some of them wanted to arrest Him, but no one [attempted to] lay a hand on Him. So, [when] the Temple guards [See verse 32] returned to the leading priests and Pharisees, they were asked, "Why did you not bring Jesus here?" The guards answered, "No one has ever spoken like this man." The Pharisees replied, "Are you being led astray, too? Have any of the authorities or Pharisees believed in him? But this crowd, which does not know the law of Moses, [and especially its oral traditions], is cursed [by God]." [Now] Nicodemus (being a leading Pharisee, and the one who went to talk to Jesus one night), said to them, "Does our law pass judgment on a man before first hearing from him and learning what he did?" They answered him, "Are you from Galilee, too? Search [the Scriptures], and you will see that no prophet will come from Galilee." [Note: They were probably referring to "the prophet" predicted to come by Moses. Deut. 18:15]. {{Most ancient manuscripts do not contain the section from 7:53 through 8:11, or else place it elsewhere in the book. Then everyone went home,


So, the leading priests and the Pharisees assembled the Council [Note: This was the Jewish governing body called "the Sanhedrin"] and said, "What should we do, for this man is performing many [miraculous] signs? If we allow him to go on [doing this], everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and destroy our Temple and our nation [i.e., its people]." But a certain member of the Sanhedrin, [named] Caiaphas, who was head priest that year, said to [the rest of] them, "You do not know what you are talking about. read more.
And you are not taking into consideration that it would be profitable to you for one man to die for the people, so that the entire nation would not be destroyed." Now he did not say this on his own [i.e., he was not aware of the significance of his words], but since he was head priest that year, he was prophesying [i.e., predicting] that Jesus should die for the nation. And not just [die] for the [Jewish] nation, but also that He would assemble together into one body the children of God who were scattered [throughout the world]. So, from that day onward, the Jewish authorities began plotting [how] to kill Jesus. So, Jesus stopped traveling publicly among the Jews [in Judea], but left there and went to a district near the desert, to a town called Ephraim, where He remained with His disciples. [Note: Ephraim was a small town about


Eight days later [i.e., the following Sunday], Jesus' disciples were inside [the house] again, [but this time] Thomas was with them. The doors were [still] closed when Jesus [suddenly] stood among them [See note on verse 19] and said, "May there be peace in your hearts." Then He said to Thomas, "Put your finger here [i.e., to touch the nail scars] and look at my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side [i.e., where the spear had pierced Him]. Stop doubting and believe [that it is really I]." Thomas replied to Him, "My Lord and my God." read more.
Jesus said to him, "Have you believed [that I am alive] because you have seen me? Those who have not seen me and yet believe are [even more] blessed."


During the winter, when the Festival of Dedication was being held in Jerusalem [Note: This was the Jewish festival commemorating the rededication of the Temple in BC after its pagan desecration by Greeks. It is still observed today by Jews as "Hanukkah."], Jesus was walking in the Temple [area] in "Solomon's Portico" [Note: This was a large covered area, with rows of columns, on the outside of the Temple enclosure]. Some Jewish [authorities] gathered around Him and asked, "How long will you hold us in suspense? If you [really] are the Christ, tell us plainly." read more.
Jesus answered them, "I did tell you, but you would not believe me. The [miraculous] deeds that I am doing in my Father's name [i.e., by the Father's authority] testify about me. But you do not believe me, because you are not [part] of my sheep. My sheep listen to my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them never ending life and they will never be destroyed, and no one will [be able to] steal them out of my hand. What my Father has given me [i.e., my sheep] are greater than everything [else], and no one is able to steal them from the Father's hand. I and the Father are one." Then the Jews again picked up stones [intending] to stone Him. Jesus said to them, "I have shown you many good deeds [i.e., miracles], performed through the Father. Which one of them are you stoning me for?" The Jews answered Him, "We are not stoning you for a good deed, but for your abusive speech [i.e., about God], and because you are claiming to be God, even though you are [only] a man." Jesus replied to them, "Is it not written in your law [Psa. 82:6], 'I said, you people are gods'? If God called those people, to whom His message came, "gods" (and Scripture cannot be set aside), how can you people say to Him, whom the Father set apart and sent into the world, 'You are speaking abusively [i.e., about God],' because I said, 'I am the Son of God'? He is the One whom the Father set apart [i.e., for His service] and sent into the world. If I am not doing my Father's deeds [i.e., miracles], do not believe me. But if I am doing them, even though you do not believe me, believe the deeds. Then you will know and continue to know that the Father is in me, and that I am in the Father." [Then] the Jews again tried to arrest Him, but He escaped from their hands.


But [even] though Jesus had performed so many [miraculous] signs in front of the people, still they did not believe in Him. This was so that these words, which Isaiah the prophet had spoken, would be fulfilled [Isa. 53:1], "Lord, who has believed our message? And who has the Lord's power been shown to?" They were not able to believe because Isaiah also said [Isa. 6:10], read more.
"God has blinded their eyes [of understanding] and closed their minds. If He had not done so, they would [be able to] see with their eyes and understand with their minds and turn [to God] so He could heal them [spiritually]." Isaiah had said these things because he saw the [coming] glory of Jesus, and [so] was speaking about Him. However, even many [Jewish] leaders believed in Him, but did not admit it, for fear of being expelled from the synagogue. For they loved the honor they received from people more than the honor they [could] receive from God. Then Jesus spoke out in a loud voice, "The person who believes in me, does not [only] believe in me, but [also] in Him who sent me [i.e., God]. And the person who sees me, sees Him who sent me [also]. I have come into the world to be a light [to it], so that whoever believes in me would not have to remain in [spiritual] darkness. And if any person hears my message and does not obey it, I will not judge him [now], for I did not come into the world to judge it, but to save it. The person who rejects me and does not accept my message has One who [will] judge him. The message that I have spoken will judge him on the last day [i.e., the judgment day]. For I did not speak from myself [i.e., on my own authority], but the Father Himself, who sent me, has ordered me what to say and speak. And I know that [obeying] His commandments [leads to] never ending life. So, the things which I say are what the Father has told me [to say]."


But the eleven disciples [i.e., apostles] went to the mountain in Galilee where Jesus had ordered them to go. And when they met Him [there], they [knelt down] to worship Him; but some [still] had doubts [i.e., about His resurrection. See John 20:25]. Then Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, "I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. read more.
So, as you go, make disciples out of people from all the nations, then immerse believers [See Mark 16:15-16] into the name of [i.e., to enter a relationship with] the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit. [Then] go on teaching them [i.e., these new converts] to obey everything I have commanded you and my presence will be with you always, even to the end of the age.


And when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus answered them, "The kingdom of God will not come the way you are looking for it. People will not be saying, 'Look, here [it is]!' or 'There [it is]!' For in fact, the kingdom of God is [now] among you [i.e., as represented by the presence and ministry of Jesus]." Then He said to the disciples, "The time is coming when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of man [i.e., the time when the Messiah would deliver His people from tribulation], but you will not see it [i.e., such deliverance would not occur during their lifetimes]. read more.
And people will be saying to you, 'Look, there [He is]! Look, here [He is]! Do not leave or follow after them. For the Son of man [will come] in His day just like lightning which flashes from one part of the sky and lights up the other part. But first He must experience much suffering and be rejected by the people of this generation. "And just as it happened in the days of Noah, so it will be in the days of the Son of man. People were eating and drinking and [men were] marrying and [women] were being given away in marriage [right up] until the day that Noah entered the ship and the Flood came and drowned them all. "It happened in a similar way in the days of Lot [i.e., Abraham's nephew]. People were eating and drinking and buying and selling and planting and building. But on the day that Lot left Sodom, fire and sulphur rained down from the sky and consumed them all. "It will be the same way on the day the Son of man is revealed [i.e., at His second coming]. On that day, the person who is on a housetop [Note: This was a flat area where people retired for rest, prayer, etc., with its stairway on the outside], whose belongings are [still] in his house, is not to go down and [attempt to] take any of them away. And the person who is in a field [i.e., doing farm work], also is not to return [to his house]. Remember [what happened to] Lot's wife! Whatever person tries to gain [everything to satisfy him in] life [here on earth] will lose it [i.e., never ending life]. But whatever person [is willing to] lose [the comforts and security of] his life [here on earth] will preserve it [for eternity]. I tell you, on that night [i.e., when Jesus returns. See verse 30], there will be two men in one bed; one will be taken [i.e., to be with the Lord] while the other one will be left [i.e., to be punished by the Lord]. There will be two women grinding grain together [Note: This was done with a hand-operated millstone where two persons sat across from each other and rotated a circular stone over kernels of grain]; one will be taken while the other one will be left. {{Some ancient manuscripts include verse There will be two men in a field [i.e., doing farm work]; one will be taken [i.e., to be with the Lord], while the other one will be left [i.e., to be punished by the Lord]." See Matt. 24:40}} And they asked Jesus, "Where [will this happen], Lord?" And He answered them, "Wherever there is a [dead] body [you will see] vultures gathered there also."


"But when the Son of man comes [back] in [all] His splendor, accompanied by all the angels, then He will sit on His throne of splendor. And people from all the nations will be assembled in front of Him and He will separate them from one another, like a shepherd separating his sheep from the goats. He will place the sheep at His right side, but the goats at His left. read more.
Then the King will say to those at His right side, 'You who are blessed by my Father, come and receive the kingdom which has been prepared for you since the creation of the world, for [when] I was hungry, you fed me; [when] I was thirsty, you gave me [something] to drink; [when] I came [to you as] a stranger, you gave me a place to stay; when I was without adequate clothing, you gave me something to wear; [when] I was sick, you came to visit me; [when] I was in prison, you came to see me.' Then those who had done what was right [i.e., the ones at His right side] replied, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry, and feed you? Or thirsty, and give you [something] to drink? And when [did you come as] a stranger, and we gave you a place to stay? Or [when were you] without adequate clothing, and we gave you something to wear? And when did we see you sick or in prison and come to visit you?' And the King will answer them and say, 'Truly I tell you, since you did all this for one of my least [significant] brothers, you did it for me.' Then He [i.e., the King] will say to those at His left side, 'Go away from me, you who are cursed [by God], into the never ending fire which is prepared for the devil and his angels. For [when] I was hungry, you did not feed me; [when] I was thirsty, you did not give me anything to drink; [when] I came [to you as] a stranger, you did not give me a place to stay; [when I] did not have adequate clothing, you did not give me anything to wear; when I was sick, or in prison, you did not visit me.' They will reply, 'Lord, when did we [ever] see you hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or inadequately dressed, or sick, or in prison, and not provide for your needs?' Then the Lord will answer them, 'Truly I tell you, since you did not do it for one of these least [significant brothers of mine], you did not do it for me.' And these [i.e., the ones at His left side] will go away to never ending punishment, but those who did what was right will go to never ending life."


Now large crowds were following Jesus and He turned [around] and said to them, "If anyone comes to me [i.e., to be my disciple], and does not hate his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brothers and sisters and, yes, even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. [And] whoever does not carry his own cross [i.e., his responsibilities with all their difficulties] and follow me cannot be my disciple. read more.
For which one of you who wants to build a [lookout] tower will not first sit down and calculate its cost, to see whether he has enough [money and materiel] to complete it? For if he does not, maybe after he has laid the foundation and [then] is not able to complete [the tower], everyone who sees it will ridicule him, saying, 'This man began to build [a tower] but was not able to finish it.' Or what king, planning to engage another king in war, will not first sit down and evaluate whether he will be able, with ten thousand [soldiers], to defeat someone who attacks him with twenty thousand [soldiers]? Or maybe, while the enemy is still a long way off, he will send representatives to ask for peace terms. So therefore, every one of you who does not say 'goodbye' to everything he owns, cannot be my disciple. Therefore salt is good, but if it loses its flavoring [ability], how will it ever get it back again? It is not suitable for the soil [i.e., for growing crops] or for fertilizer, but [only] for people to throw out. [See note on Matt. 5:13]. The person who has ears to hear with ought to listen [to this] carefully."


Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a certain village [i.e., Bethany. See John 11:1], and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister named Mary who was also sitting at the Lord's feet, listening to what He said. But Martha was preoccupied with all the preparations [i.e., for entertaining her beloved guest] and came up to Jesus and said, "Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Ask her to help me." read more.
But the Lord answered her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about [so] many things. But only one thing is [really] needful. For Mary has made the better choice, which will not be taken away from her."


"Now there was a certain rich man who was dressed in purple [clothing] and soft linen [garments] and who lived every day in pleasure and luxury. And a certain beggar named Lazarus, who was full of sores, was laid at the rich man's doorway. He longed to be fed with scraps that fell from the rich man's table and even dogs came and licked his sores. read more.
And it happened that the beggar died and [his spirit] was carried away by angels to a place close to Abraham. And the rich man also died and [his body] was buried. And in the unseen place of departed spirits the rich man, who was being tormented, looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus close beside him. And he shouted out, 'Forefather Abraham, take pity on me and send Lazarus [to me], so he can dip the tip of his finger in water [and touch] my tongue to cool it, because I am in agony in these flames.' But Abraham said [to him], 'Son, remember how you enjoyed good things when you were alive [on earth] and how Lazarus had to put up with bad things? But now here [i.e., in the unseen place of departed spirits] he is being comforted and you are in agony. And besides all this, there is a huge chasm situated between us and you so that those who wanted to go from here to there [where you are] cannot do it. And no one can cross over from there to us [over here].' Then the rich man said, 'I beg you therefore, forefather [Abraham], that you would send Lazarus to my father's house, where I have five brothers. Then he could warn them so that they will not [have to] come to this [terrible] place of torment also.' But Abraham said, 'They have [the writings of] Moses and the prophets; let them pay attention to them.' Then the rich man said, 'No, forefather Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, [then] they will repent [i.e., change their hearts and lives].' And Abraham replied, 'If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded [even] if someone rises from the dead [i.e., to come back and warn them].'"


And it happened as Jesus was on His way to Jerusalem that He passed along the border between Samaria and Galilee. [Note: These were the next two provinces north of Judea]. And as He entered a certain village, He was met by ten men with infectious skin diseases, who were standing some distance away [Note: Restrictions in the Jewish law prevented contact with persons having infectious diseases. See Lev. 13:45ff], and shouting, "Jesus, Master, have pity on us." read more.
And when Jesus saw them, He said to them, "Go and show yourselves to the priests." [See Lev. 13:49; 14:2ff]. And it happened, as they went [along], that they were healed. Then one of them, seeing he had been healed, returned and praised God in a loud voice. And he fell on his face at Jesus' feet and thanked Him. And he was a Samaritan. [Note: Samaritans were despised by the Jews and regarded as a 'half-breeds']. Jesus asked [those standing nearby], "Were there not ten men [who were] healed? Where are the [other] nine? Did not anyone [else] come back to give praise to God, except this foreigner?" Then Jesus said to the one [who had returned], "Get up and go on your way. Your faith has made you well."


Now while Jesus was speaking, a Pharisee [i.e., a strict sect of the Jewish religion] invited Him to have a meal with him. So, Jesus went in [to his house] and reclined [at the dinner table]. [Note: See Matt. 23:6]. years later in the war with the Romans, when Jerusalem was destroyed]. And when the Pharisee observed this, he was surprised that Jesus had not first washed himself ceremonially before the meal. read more.
And the Lord said to him, "Now you Pharisees [meticulously] clean the outside of the cup and the dish [i.e., this was an allusion to their lives], but you are filled with greed for wealth and [other] evils on the inside. You foolish people! Did not the One [i.e., God] who made the outside [i.e., your body] also make the inside [i.e., your spirit]? But you should give to poor people what you have inside. [Note: This means either what is inside the dish, or what is inside your heart]. And [then] you will see that everything is [ceremonially] clean to you [as well]. "But it is too bad for you Pharisees! For you give a tenth of your mint, rue and every [other] herb [Note: These were small garden plants used for seasoning or medicine] and [yet] neglect [demonstrating] justice and the love of God [toward others]. But you should have done these things and not neglected to do the other things [as well]. "It is too bad for you Pharisees! For you love [to occupy] the principal seats in the synagogues and [to receive special] greetings in the open shopping markets. "It is too bad for you! For you people are like obscure grave sites that people walk over without knowing it." Then one of the teachers of the law of Moses answered Jesus, saying, "Teacher, you insulted us too by saying this." And He replied them, "It is too bad for you teachers of the law of Moses also! For you heap heavy responsibilities on people, which are difficult to bear, while you do not even lift a finger to bear them yourselves. "It is too bad for you! For your forefathers killed the prophets and you build grave monuments to them [i.e., the prophets]. So, [by doing this] you are witnesses [against yourselves] that you approve of the deeds of your forefathers, for they killed the prophets and you build grave monuments to them. Therefore, the wisdom of God said, [Note: Is this a reference to Jesus? See I Cor. 1:30 and Matt. 23:34-36], 'I will send prophets and apostles to them [i.e., the Jewish people] and they will kill and persecute some of them, so that the blood of all the prophets, shed from the beginning of the world, may be required of this generation of people.' Yes, I tell you, this generation will be punished [for the death of the prophets], from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zachariah, who died between the Altar and the sanctuary [i.e., in the Temple area]. [Note: This punishment began about "It is too bad for you teachers of the law of Moses! For you took away the key of knowledge [i.e., preventing people from understanding God's plan]. You did not enter [the kingdom of heaven. See Matt. 23:13] yourselves and [you even] prevented those who [wanted] to enter [to get in]." And when Jesus left there [i.e., probably the Pharisee's house. See verse 37], the experts in the law of Moses and the Pharisees began opposing Him with hostility and bombarding Him with many questions, [and] plotting to trap Him by something He might say.


Now the Jewish Passover Festival was soon [to be held], so Jesus went up to Jerusalem [to attend it]. There in the Temple [area] He found people selling oxen, sheep and pigeons. [i.e., for use as sacrifices]. Also cashiers were sitting there. [Note: These people exchanged foreign coins so visitors to Jerusalem could make purchases and pay taxes]. Then Jesus made a whip out of strands of rope and drove all of the sheep and oxen out of the Temple [area], dumped out the cashiers' money and overturned their tables. read more.
He said to those who were selling the pigeons, "Take these things out of here, and quit making my Father's house [i.e., the Temple] a merchandise mart." Then Jesus' disciples remembered that it was written [Psa. 69:9], "Enthusiasm for Your [i.e., God's] house [i.e., the Temple] will consume me." So, the Jews asked Him, "What [miraculous] sign will you show us, since you are doing these things [i.e., disrupting their merchandising activities]?" Jesus answered them, "[If you] destroy this Temple, I will raise it up in three days." But the Jews said, "It took forty-six years to build this Temple, and are you going to rebuild it in three days?" But Jesus was speaking about the "temple" of His [physical] body. Therefore, when He was raised from the dead, His disciples remembered what He had said and they believed the Scriptures and the words Jesus had spoken. Now when Jesus was in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, many people believed in His name [i.e., in Jesus Himself] when they saw the [miraculous] signs He was doing. But Jesus would not trust Himself to them [i.e., to the care of these Jewish leaders] because He knew all men, and He did not need anyone to tell Him about mankind, for He Himself knew what was in the hearts of mankind.


Then Jesus returned again to Cana, in Galilee, where He had turned water into wine. There was a government official there whose son was sick at Capernaum [Note: Capernaum was about When he heard that Jesus had come from Judea to Galilee, he went to Him and begged Him to come down [to Capernaum] and heal his son who was about to die. So, Jesus said to him, "None of you people will believe [in me] unless you see [miraculous] signs and wonders, [will you?]." read more.
The government official replied, "Sir, [please] come down [to Capernaum] before my child dies." Jesus said to him, "Go on [home]; your son will live." And the man believed what Jesus said to him and went [home]. While he was going along, his slaves met him and told him that his son was [still] alive. Then he asked them what the [exact] time was when his son began to get better. They said to him, "[It was] yesterday at seven o'clock in the morning that the fever left him." [Note: This would have been So [then], the father realized that it was at that [exact] hour that Jesus had said to him, "Your son will live." So, he and his entire family believed [in Jesus]. [Now] this was the second [miraculous] sign that Jesus performed after going from Judea to Galilee.


So, the seventy-two disciples returned with joy, saying, "Lord, even the evil spirits submitted to us in your name [i.e., by your authority]." And Jesus said to them, "I saw Satan falling from heaven as lightning. See, I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions [i.e., to receive protection from accidental contact with venomous creatures. See Acts 28:5] and [to have authority] over all the power of the enemy [i.e., Satan. See verse 18]. And nothing at all will hurt you. read more.
Nevertheless, do not rejoice over the [evil] spirits submitting to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven [i.e., in the book of life. See Rev. 3:5; Heb. 12:23]." At that very time Jesus rejoiced in [the power of] the Holy Spirit, and said [in prayer], "I praise you, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you concealed these things [i.e., His divine revelations] from those [claiming to be] wise and intelligent and have revealed them to babies [i.e., to simple, sincere, common people]. Yes, Father, this was pleasing to you. Everything has been handed over to me by my Father and no one knows the Son except the Father. And [no one knows] the Father except the Son and whatever person the Son wants to reveal Him to." Then Jesus turned to the disciples and said privately, "The eyes that see the things you see are [truly] blessed, for I tell you, many prophets and kings wanted to see the things that you see, but did not [get to] see them. And [they wanted] to hear the things that you hear, but did not [get to] hear them."


And this is the testimony John [the Immerser] gave when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, "Who are you?" [Note: Levites were men who assisted the priests in the Temple service]. Then he declared openly, without denying it, "I am not the Christ [i.e., God's specially chosen one]." So, they asked him, "Who then [are you]? Are you Elijah [i.e., returned from the dead]?" But he answered, "[No], I am not." "[Then], are you the prophet [i.e., Moses. See Deut. 18:15-19]?" they asked. And he answered, "No." read more.
So, they asked him [again], "[Then], who are you? We need to take back an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?" He replied, "I am the voice of a man who is calling out in the desert, [urging people to] 'Make the road for the Lord straight,' as Isaiah the prophet said, [Isa. 40:3]." Now those who were sent [i.e., to question John] were Pharisees [i.e., a strict sect of the Jewish religion]. They asked him, "Why do you immerse people then, if you are not the Christ, or Elijah, or the prophet [Moses]?" So, John answered them, saying, "I am immersing people in water, but there is Someone among you whom you do not recognize. He is the One who will follow my ministry; [and] I do not deserve to untie his sandal lace." These things happened in Bethany on the east side of the Jordan River where John was immersing people. [Note: This was a different Bethany from the one just outside of Jerusalem]. On the next day John [the Immerser] saw Jesus approaching him and said, "Look, [there is] the Lamb of God; He [will] take away the sin of the people of the world. He is the One about whom I said, 'A man will come after me who ranks above me, for He existed before me.' And I would not have recognized Him, but I came immersing people in water so that He would become known to the Israelites." So, John gave his testimony, saying, "I have seen the Holy Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven, and it remained on Him. And I did not recognize Him, but He [i.e., God], who sent me to immerse in water, said to me, 'The one on whom you see the Holy Spirit descending and remaining is the same One who [will] immerse people in the Holy Spirit.' And I have seen and given testimony that this person is the Son of God."


And Jesus was teaching in the Temple every day. But the leading priests and the experts in the law of Moses and the leading men of the people were looking [for a way] to kill Him, but they could not find a way to do it, because all the people were listening to Him attentively.


Now a certain man named Lazarus, from Bethany, became sick. Bethany was the town where Mary and her sister Martha lived. [See 11:18]. This was the Mary who had poured the perfume on the Lord and wiped His feet with her hair [See Matt. 26:6-13], whose brother Lazarus was sick. So, the sisters sent [someone] to Him, saying, "Look, Lord, the person you love [i.e., your dear friend, Lazarus] is sick." read more.
But when Jesus heard this, He said, "This illness will not result in [his] death, but was intended to bring honor to God, so that the Son of God would be honored by it." Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister [Mary] and [her brother] Lazarus. So, when He heard that Lazarus was sick, He stayed where He was [i.e., on the east side of the Jordan River. See 10:40] for two [more] days. Then, after this, He said to His disciples, "Let us go [back] to Judea again." The disciples replied to Him, "The Jews [there] have just been trying to stone you, and you are going back again?" Jesus answered, "Are there not twelve hours in a day? [i.e., hours of daylight]. If a person walks during daylight, he will not stumble because he can see [by] the sun's light. But if he walks at night he [might] stumble, because there is no light [to see by]. [Note: These words have a figurative meaning as Jesus is speaking about His mission in life]. After saying these things He said to His disciples, "Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going to wake him up." But the disciples said to Him, "Lord, if he is [only] asleep, he will get well." Now Jesus had been talking about Lazarus' death, but the disciples thought He was referring to normal sleep. So, Jesus said plainly, "Lazarus is dead. miles northeast of Jerusalem, near Samaria]. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there [when he died], so that [now] you will believe [i.e., when you see him miraculously raised up]. But let us go to him [now]." Then Thomas, which means, "The Twin," said to his fellow disciples, "Let us go too, so we can die with Him." [i.e., by being stoned to death with Jesus. See 11:8]. So, when Jesus arrived, He found out that Lazarus had already been in his grave [i.e., a cave-like tomb] for four days. Now Bethany was close to Jerusalem, [being] fewer than two miles away, and many of Martha and Mary's Jewish friends had come to comfort them over [the loss of] their brother. So, when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went [out to the edge of town. See verse 30] to meet Him, but Mary [just] sat at home [i.e., probably grief-stricken]. Then Martha said to Jesus, "Lord, if [only] you had been here, my brother would not have died. And I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask Him for." Jesus said to her, "Your brother will rise again [from the dead]." Martha replied to Him, "I know that he will rise again at the resurrection on the last day [i.e., the judgment day]." Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life; the person who believes in me will live on, even though he dies [physically]. And whoever goes on living and believing in me, will never die [spiritually]. Do you believe this?" Martha answered Him, "Yes, Lord, I have [already] believed that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come into the world." After saying this, she left and called her sister Mary and said to her privately, "The Teacher is here and is asking for you." And when Mary heard this, she got up quickly and went to Jesus. (Now Jesus had not yet arrived in town, but was still at the place where Martha had met Him [i.e., probably on the road near the edge of town]). When Martha's Jewish friends, who had been comforting her at her house, saw Mary getting up quickly and leaving, they followed her, thinking she was going to the grave site to mourn. So, when Mary arrived at where Jesus was and saw Him, she fell down at His feet and said, "Lord, if [only] you had been here, my brother would not have died." When Jesus saw her and her Jewish friends, who had come with her, crying, He felt distressed in His spirit and [visibly] troubled [Note: This last word means to shake with emotion, and seems to have been caused by His deep sympathy for these grieving people], and said, "Where have they laid his body?" They answered Him, "Lord, come and see." Jesus shed tears. [Some of] the Jewish friends then said, "Look how [much] he loved him!" [See verse 3]. But others of them said, "Could not this man, who restored sight to a blind person, have kept Lazarus from dying?" So, Jesus again felt distressed within Himself [as He] went to the grave site, which was a cave with a stone [slab] across its entrance. Jesus said, "You people, take the stone away." [But] Martha, the dead man's sister, said to Jesus, "Lord, his body is decomposing by now, for he has been dead four days." Jesus replied to her, "Did I not tell you that you would see God's glory [i.e., a miraculous resurrection. See verses 22-27] if you believed?" So, they removed the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, "Father, thank you for hearing me. [Note: Jesus had already prayed for and been assured of Lazarus' resurrection]. I know that you always hear me, but I said this for the sake of the crowd standing here, so they would believe that you sent me." And after He had said this, He called out in a loud voice, "Lazarus, come out!" [Immediately] the man who had died came out [of the cave] with his hands and feet [still] wrapped in bandages, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to his Jewish friends, "Unwrap him and let him go." When many of Mary's Jewish friends, who had come to console her, saw what Jesus had done, they believed in Him. But some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done.


When Jesus and His disciples came to Capernaum, the collectors of the tax [Note: This was the annual tax used for meeting the expenses of the Temple service and consisted of two days' worth of a farm laborer's pay, or about $140 in 1994] came to Peter and said, "Does not your teacher [also] pay the [Temple] tax?" He replied, "Yes, [He does]." And when Peter entered the house, Jesus spoke to him first, [i.e., without waiting for Peter to tell Him what he had said to the tax collectors], saying, "What do you think, Simon? From whom do earthly kings collect custom duty and taxes? From their children or from strangers?" And when Peter said, "From strangers," Jesus added, "Therefore, children are free [from such taxation]. read more.
But, so that we do not become a hindrance to these [tax collectors], go to the lake and cast in your hook [and line]. Then take the first fish [you catch], open its mouth and you will find a coin [i.e., worth twice the amount of an individual's Temple tax assessment]. Take it and give it [to the tax collectors] for you and me."


And as the crowd listened to these things, Jesus told them another parable, because He was close to Jerusalem and they assumed the kingdom of God was going to appear right away. So, He said, "A certain distinguished gentleman went to a distant country to receive a royal appointment [i.e., as king over a territory] and then return. [Note: This is the only parable of Jesus' that correlates with a known incident; that of Herod's son Archelaus going to Rome to receive from Caesar Augustus an appointment to rule over Judea, Samaria and Idumaea in So, he called ten of his slaves and gave each of them a sum of money [Note: The amount of each sum was equivalent to one hundred days of a farm laborer's pay, or about $7,000 in 1994]. [Then] he said to them, 'Invest this money until I return.' read more.
But the citizens [of his newly acquired kingdom] hated him and sent a delegation after him [i.e., to the person who appointed the gentleman king over them], saying, 'We do not want this man to rule over us.' And it happened when the gentleman returned, having received his appointment as king, that he ordered the slaves to whom he had given the [sums of] money, to report to him. He wanted to find out how much [money] they had made on their investments. So, the first one appeared in front of him, and said, 'Master, your sum of money has earned ten times more.' And the gentleman replied, 'Well done, you are a good slave. Because you have proven trustworthy over a [relatively] very small matter, you will [now] have charge over ten towns.' Then the second slave appeared, and said, 'Master, your sum of money has earned five times more.' And the gentleman said to him also, 'You [will] have charge over five towns.' Then another slave appeared and said, 'Look, master, here is your sum of money. I kept it [safely] wrapped up in a cloth, for I was afraid of you, knowing you are a hard man to deal with and that you pick up [and keep] something you did not lay down [i.e., lose], and you harvest a crop that you did not plant.' The gentleman replied to him, 'I will judge you [based] on what you [yourself] have [just] said, you evil slave. [Since] you knew that I am a hard man to deal with, picking up [and keeping] something I had not laid down, and harvesting a crop I had not planted, then why did you not deposit my money in the bank? [Then] when I returned I could have withdrawn [the original sum of money] plus interest.' Then he said to those who were standing around, 'Take the sum of money away from him and give it to the one who made ten times as much [with the original sum].' But the people said to him, 'Master, he [already] has ten times as much money [as you gave him].' [So the gentleman concluded], 'I tell you, to every person who [already] has something, [more] will be given, but from that person who has [almost] nothing, even [the little] he has will be taken away from him. But bring those enemies of mine here [i.e., the citizens. See verse 14], who did not want me to rule over them, and kill them in front of me.'" And when Jesus had said this, He went on ahead [of His disciples. See Matt. 21:1] up to Jerusalem.


Then Jesus began to rebuke the people of the towns where most of His powerful miracles were performed because they did not repent [when they saw Him perform them]. [He said] "It will be too bad for you, Chorazin! It will be too bad for you, Bethsaida! For if the powerful miracles had been performed in [the cities of] Tyre and Sidon which were performed in your presence, they would have repented long ago, [demonstrating it] by wearing sackcloth [i.e., a coarse cloth made of goat hair] and throwing ashes [into the air]. But I tell you, Tyre and Sidon will be shown more leniency on the judgment day than you people will. read more.
And Capernaum, do you think you will be lifted up toward heaven [as a proud city]? [No indeed], you will [surely] go down to the place of the unseen [i.e., become obscure or obliterated as a city]. For if the powerful miracles had been performed in Sodom which were performed in your presence, it would have remained [even] until today. But I say to you, Sodom will be shown more leniency on the judgment day than you will." About that time Jesus said [in prayer], "I thank you, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things [i.e., the significance of Jesus' words and works] from those who [thought they] were wise and intelligent and have [instead] revealed them to people who are child-like. Yes Father, you did this because it was very pleasing to you. "All things have been entrusted to me by my Father and no one [truly] knows the Son except the Father. And neither does anyone [truly] know the Father except the Son and that person to whom the Son wants to reveal Him. Come to me, all of you who are overworked and overburdened and I will give you rest [i.e., spiritual refreshment]. Accept my reins [on your life], and learn about me, because I am gentle and humble, and [in my service] you will experience rest in your spirits. For my reins [on your life] are easy [to respond to] and the burden I place [on you] is light."


Now it was before the Passover Festival [was to begin] and Jesus knew that the time had come for Him to leave this world and return to the Father. Those [living] in the world, whom He had loved, and who were His own [disciples], He continued to love [dearly] to the very end [i.e., of His life on earth]. The devil had already filled the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, with the desire to turn Jesus over [i.e., to the Jewish authorities]. During the [Passover] meal, Jesus, who knew that the Father had given Him complete authority, [also] knew that He had come from God and was [about] to return to God. read more.
So, He got up from the dinner table, laid aside His [outer] clothing and took a towel and wrapped it around Himself. Then He poured water into a basin and began washing His disciples feet and drying them with the towel around His waist. He came to Simon Peter, who said to Him, "Lord, are you going to wash my feet, [too]?" Jesus answered him, "You do not understand what I am doing, but you will later on." Peter said to Him, "[No], you will never wash my feet." Jesus replied to him, "If I do not wash you, you will not be able to participate with me [i.e., as a disciple]." Simon Peter [then] said to Him, "Lord, do not [just] wash my feet only, but my hands and head, too." Jesus replied to him, "The person who has already had a bath is completely clean and does not need to wash anything but his feet. And you disciples are [already] clean [i.e., spiritually], but not every one of you." For Jesus knew who would betray Him; that is why He said, "Not every one of you is [spiritually] clean." So, after Jesus had washed His disciples' feet and put His [outer] clothing back on, He reclined again [at the dinner table] and said to them, "Do you understand what I have done to you? You call me 'Teacher,' and 'Lord,' and you are right in doing so because that is who I am. So if I, then, being your Lord and Teacher have washed your feet, you should wash one another's feet also. For I have set an example for you, so that you should do as I have done for you. Truly, truly, I tell you, a slave is not greater [in importance] than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the person who sent him. If you know these things, you will be happy if you practice them.


Upon [hearing] this, many of Jesus' disciples turned back and refused to accompany Him anymore. [Note: They deserted Jesus physically as well as spiritually]. Therefore, Jesus said to the twelve apostles, "Do you not want to go [with me] either?" Simon Peter answered Him, "Lord, who [else] could we go to? You have the message about never ending life. read more.
And we apostles have believed [in you] and know that you are God's Holy One." Jesus answered them, "Did I not choose [all] twelve of you, and one of you is a devil?" [Note: The word "devil" means "adversary" or "opponent"]. Now He was speaking about Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, for he was the one, out of the twelve, who was [soon] going to turn Jesus over [to the Jewish authorities].


On the next day the crowd that had stayed on the other [i.e., east] side of the lake realized that there had been only one boat there. They [also] knew that Jesus was not aboard the boat when it left with the disciples in it, but that they had left without Him. (However, meanwhile, some other [small] boats had come from Tiberias [i.e., a small town on the west side of the lake] near where they had eaten bread after the Lord had given thanks). So, when the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor His disciples were there [i.e., on the east side] they got into the [small] boats and sailed [west] to Capernaum, looking for Jesus. read more.
And when they found Him on the other [i.e., west] side, they said to Him, "Rabbi, how did you get here?" Jesus answered them, "Truly, truly, I tell you, you people are looking for me because you got to eat the loaves of bread and were satisfied and not because you saw [miraculous] signs. [See verse 14]. Do not work for the [kind of] food that spoils, but for the kind that lasts until never ending life. The Son of man will give you this [kind of food], for God the Father has placed His seal [of approval] on Him." Then the people said to Jesus, "What must we do in order to perform the deeds that God requires?" Jesus answered them, "This is the deed that God requires: You should believe in Him whom God has sent [i.e., in Jesus]." And they said to Him, "What kind of a [miraculous] sign will you perform so that we can see it and [then] believe [in] you? What [kind of] deed will you perform? Our forefathers ate the [supernatural] 'manna' in the desert, as it is written [Neh. 9:15], 'He gave them bread from heaven to eat.'" So Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I tell you, it was not [really] Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who is [now] giving you the real bread from heaven. For the bread God gives is the One [see verse 35] who comes down from heaven, and [He] gives [spiritual] life to the world." Then they said to Him, "Sir, [please] give us this bread all the time." Jesus replied, "I am the bread who gives [spiritual] life; the person who comes to me will never get hungry [again], and the one who believes in me will never get thirsty [again]. But I have told you this: You have seen me and yet do not believe [in me]. Every person [Note: The Greek says, "every thing"] whom the Father gives me will [eventually] come to me [i.e., for salvation]; and I will never turn away that person who comes to me. For I have come down from heaven to do what God, who sent me, wants me to do, not what I want to do. And this is what God, who sent me, wants: That I should not lose any of those persons whom He has given me, but should raise them up [from the dead] on the last day [i.e., the judgment day]. And this is what [else] my Father wants: That every person who sees the Son [i.e., with the eye of faith] and believes in Him should have never ending life, and I will raise him up [from the dead] on the last day." So the Jews, [who were assembled in the synagogue. See verse 59] began complaining about Jesus because He had said, "I am the bread that came down from heaven." And they said, "Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph? Do we not know his father and mother? Then how can he say, 'I have come down from heaven'?" Jesus answered them, "Stop complaining among yourselves. No one can come to me unless the Father, who sent me, attracts him to me. [See verse 65]. And I will raise him up [from the dead] on the last day. It is written in the prophets [Isa. 54:13], 'And they will all be taught by God.' [So], every person who has heard the Father and learned [from Him] will come to me. [I am] not [saying] that anyone has [ever] seen the Father, except the One who is from God [i.e., Jesus] has seen Him. Truly, truly, I tell you, the person who believes [in me] has never ending life. [See note on 5:24]. I am the bread of life. Your forefathers ate the 'manna' in the desert and died. [But] this is the bread that has come down from heaven [i.e., Jesus is referring to Himself], so that a person who eats of it [i.e., believes in Jesus] will not die [spiritually]. I am the living bread who came down from heaven; if anyone eats this bread, he will live forever. Yes, and the bread that I will give [him] is my physical body, [so] that the world can have [never ending] life." Then the Jews [who were assembled in the synagogue. See verse 59] began arguing bitterly with one another, saying, "How can this man give us his physical body to eat?" So, Jesus answered them, "Truly, truly, I tell you, unless you eat the physical body of the Son of man and drink His blood, you do not have [spiritual] life in yourselves [Note: The references to "body" and "blood" throughout this section allude to taking Jesus' life and teaching into one's heart. See verse 56]. The person who eats my physical body and drinks my blood has never ending life [See note on 5:24], and I will raise him up [from the dead] on the last day [i.e., the judgment day]. For my physical body is real food and my blood is [the] real drink. The person who eats my physical body and drinks my blood lives in me and I [live] in him. Just as the living Father has sent me, and I have [physical and spiritual] life because of the Father, so the person who eats me will also have [physical ? and spiritual] life because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven [i.e., Jesus is referring to Himself]. [It is] not like [the bread] our forefathers ate and [then] died. The person who eats this bread will live forever." Jesus said these things in the synagogue as He taught in Capernaum. So, when they heard [these things], many of Jesus' disciples said, "This is difficult teaching. Who can listen to it [i.e., and accept it]?" But Jesus, knowing within Himself that His disciples were complaining about His teaching, said to them, "Does this [teaching] bother you? Then what if you were to see the Son of man going up [i.e., to heaven] where He was before? It is the Holy Spirit who [Note: The Greek word here is "that" instead of "who"] gives life [i.e., understanding the spiritual nature of Jesus' teaching can produce spiritual life]; the flesh is of no value [i.e., understanding Jesus' teaching only in a physical sense makes it worthless]. The words I have spoken to you are [from the] Holy Spirit and [they give] life. But there are some of you who do not believe [in me]." For Jesus knew from the beginning which ones would not believe [in Him] and which one would turn Him over [i.e., to the Jewish authorities]. Then He said, "This is the reason I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father gives him [the opportunity. See verse 44]."


Then on the following day John was standing [there] again with two of his disciples. And when he saw Jesus walking by, he said, "Look, [there is] the Lamb of God!" [When] the two disciples heard him say that, they began following Jesus. read more.
Then Jesus turned and saw them following [Him] and said to them, "What are you looking for?" And they answered Him, "Rabbi (which means Teacher), where are you staying?" Then He said to them, "Come, and you will see." So, they went and saw where He was staying and they stayed with Him that day. It was about ten o'clock in the morning. [Note: Hour designations in this book are being calculated by Roman time, but this would have been One of the two men who had listened to John and had become a follower of Jesus was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. The first thing Andrew did was to find his own brother Simon and say to him, "We have found the Messiah (which means Christ [i.e., God's specially chosen one])." So, Andrew brought Simon Peter to Jesus. [And when] Jesus saw him, He said [to him], "You are Simon, the son of John [Note: Peter's father is called Jonah in Matt. 16:17]; you will be called Cephas (which means Peter [i.e., "a stone." See Matt. 16:18])." [Then] on the next day He [i.e., Jesus, but some think it refers to Peter or Andrew] decided to travel into Galilee, [and there] He found Philip. Jesus said to Philip, "Become my follower." Now Philip was from Bethsaida, Andrew's and Peter's home town. [Note: This town was on the northwest shore of Lake Galilee, a few miles from Capernaum]. [Then] Philip found Nathaniel [i.e., the same as Bartholomew. See Matt. 10:3] and said to him, "We have found Him, the one Moses wrote about in the law; and the prophets [also wrote about Him]. [He is] Jesus from Nazareth, the [step-] son of Joseph." Nathaniel replied to him, "Can anything worthwhile come from Nazareth?" [Note: Nazareth had a bad reputation and Jewish writings made no prediction of a prophet coming from that area. See John 7:52]. Philip answered him, "Come and see." [As] Jesus saw Nathaniel coming toward Him, He said [this] about him, "Look, [there is] a true Israelite, a completely honest man!" Nathaniel asked Jesus, "How did you know me?" Jesus answered him, "I saw you when you were under that fig tree, [even] before Philip called you." Nathaniel replied to Him, "Rabbi [i.e., Teacher], you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel." Jesus said to him, "Do you believe [in me just] because I told you, 'I saw you under that fig tree'? You will see [even] greater things than these [happen]." Then Jesus said to him, "Truly, truly, I tell you, you will see heaven opened up and the angels of God going up [from] and coming down on the Son of man" [i.e., probably a reference to angels ministering to Jesus' needs. See Matt. 4:6, 11; Luke 22:43].


Just then a certain teacher of the law of Moses stood up and [attempted to] test Jesus, saying, "Teacher, what must I do to inherit [never ending] life?" And Jesus said to him, "What is written in the law of Moses? How do you read it?" And the man answered Him, [Deut. 6:5], "You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength and with all your mind." And [Lev. 19:18 says], " [You must love] your neighbor just as [you love] yourself." read more.
Then Jesus said to him, "You have answered correctly; [if] you do this, you will live" [i.e., forever. See verse 25]. But, wanting to justify himself, the teacher of the law of Moses asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" Jesus answered him, "A certain man was traveling down from Jerusalem to Jericho [Note: This was a town about eighteen miles northeast of Jerusalem], when he was attacked by robbers, who stripped him [of his clothing and belongings] and beat him up, then went away leaving him half dead. And it just happened that a certain priest was traveling down that [same] road, and when he saw the [injured] man, he went around him on the opposite side of the road. In the same way, a Levite [Note: Levites were assistants to the priests], when coming to that place and seeing the [injured] man, also went around him on the opposite side [of the road]. But [then] a certain Samaritan [Note: This was a person despised by the Jews and regarded by them as a 'half-breed'], as he traveled along, came to where the [injured] man was [lying], and upon seeing him [lying there], felt deep pity [for him]. So, he went over to him, poured oil and wine on him [i.e., as emergency medical treatment], then bandaged his wounds, placed him on his own animal, and took him to a lodge where he took care of him. Then the next day he gave the lodge keeper two coins [Note: These coins amounted to two days of a farm laborer's pay, or about $140 in 1994] and told him, 'Take care of this [injured] man; and whatever more you have to spend on him I will repay you when I come back [this way] again.' [Now] which of these three men do you think acted like a neighbor to the man attacked by the robbers?" And the teacher of the law of Moses said, "The person who showed pity on him." Then Jesus replied, "You go and do the same thing."


But what do you think [about this]? A man had two sons; He went to the first one and said, 'Son, go to work in my vineyard today.' The son answered, 'No, I will not,' but later changed his mind and went. He went to the second son and said the same thing. That son replied, '[Yes], sir, I will,' [but] then did not go. read more.
Which of these two sons did what his father wanted?" They answered, "The first one." Jesus said to them, "Truly I tell you, tax collectors and prostitutes [will] enter the kingdom of God ahead of you.


Then Jesus told His disciples a parable for the purpose of showing them that they should pray continually and not become discouraged. He said, "There was a certain judge in this town who did not revere God nor respect man. There was [also] a widow in that [same] town who kept coming to the judge saying, 'Grant me a [favorable] judgment against my opponent.' read more.
And for some time the judge refused to do it. But finally he said to himself, 'Even though I do not revere God or respect man, I will grant her a [favorable] judgment because she keeps bothering me [about the matter] and is about to exhaust my patience by her persistent visits.'" And the Lord said, "Listen to what [even] this unjust judge said [about the widow]. So, will God not grant justice to His elect [i.e., His people] who call out to Him [i.e., in prayer] day and night? Will He be slow in helping them? I tell you, He will grant justice to them quickly. However, will the Son of man find [very many] believing people on the earth when He returns?" Then Jesus told this parable to certain ones who were relying on their own goodness and putting everyone else down: "Two men went up to the Temple [in Jerusalem] to pray. One of them was a Pharisee and the other one was a tax collector. The Pharisee stood up [conspicuously] and prayed about himself this way [i.e., bragging to God about how good he was], 'God, I thank you that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, sexually unfaithful to their mates, or even like that tax collector [over there]. I fast [i.e., going without food and/or drink for religious reasons] twice a week and I give [to God's work] a tenth of everything I get.' But the tax collector stood at a distance [i.e., inconspicuously] and would not even look up to heaven, but struck his chest [i.e., in remorse], saying, 'God, [please] have mercy on a sinner like me.' I tell you, this man went back home right with God instead of the other man. For every person who exalts himself [as important] will be humbled, but whoever humbles himself will be exalted [as important]."


Now as Jesus moved on from there, two blind men followed Him [i.e., probably being led by sighted persons]. They were shouting, "Have pity on us, son of David!" And when He had entered the house [i.e., probably a friend's house there in Capernaum. See 8:20], the blind men came in [after Him]. Jesus said to them, "Do you believe that I am able to do what you are asking?" They replied, "Yes, Lord." Then He touched their eyes and said, "Let what you expect be done for you." read more.
And [immediately] they were able to see. Jesus then strongly urged them, saying, "Make sure that no one knows [what I have done for you]." But [instead], they went all over the district telling people about Him. As they went on their way a deaf-mute, dominated by an evil spirit, was brought to Jesus. When the evil spirit was driven out [by Jesus] the [former] deaf-mute began to speak, and the crowds marveled, saying, "No one in Israel has ever seen this done before." But the Pharisees said, "He is driving out evil spirits by [the power of] the chief of evil spirits."


Then Jesus said to His disciples, "It is inevitable that occasions which cause people to be led astray [from God] will come, but it is too bad for that person who is responsible for it happening. It would be good [i.e., better] for him to have had a huge millstone tied around his neck and be thrown into the ocean [Note: This "millstone" was a huge, circular stone rolled over grain to crush it and was moved by an animal walking in a circle], rather than having him cause one of these little ones [i.e., humble followers of the Lord] to be led astray [from God]. Pay attention to yourselves! "If your brother sins, rebuke him [i.e., show him where he is wrong in hope of effecting a change]; and if he repents [i.e., changes his heart and life], forgive him. read more.
And if he sins against you seven times a day and [then] comes to you seven times and says, 'I repent,' you should forgive him." Then the apostles said to the Lord, "Give us more faith." And the Lord said, "If you had faith as [small as] a mustard tree seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and replanted in the ocean,' and it would obey you. "But which of you, whose slave is plowing or tending sheep, will say to him when he comes in from the field, 'Come and sit right down to eat'? Would you not say to him instead, 'Prepare the food for my meal [first] and get ready to serve me until I have had enough to eat and drink and [then] afterward you can eat and drink [yourself]'? Would he thank his slave for doing the things that he was ordered to do? So, you too, after you have done everything you were told to, should say, 'We are unworthy slaves. We have done [only] what we were supposed to do.'"


Now Jesus' parents went to Jerusalem every year to attend the Passover Festival. [Note: This was the annual Jewish festival commemorating Israel's deliverance from Egyptian bondage under Moses' leadership]. When Jesus was twelve years old, they [all] went up to the Festival as usual. And when they had completed [all] the days [of festivities], and were returning [home], the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. Now His parents did not know this, read more.
so thinking He was in the caravan, they continued traveling for an entire day [before] they began looking for Him among their relatives and friends. And when they could not find Him, they returned to Jerusalem to look for Him. And it happened after three days that they found Him in the Temple, sitting in the middle of the [Jewish] teachers, listening to them and asking questions. And all of them who heard Him were amazed at His understanding [i.e., of spiritual matters] and His answers [to questions they would ask Him]. When His parents [finally] saw Him, they were very surprised and His mother asked Him, "Son, why have you treated us this way? Look, your [step-] father and I have been anxiously searching for you." And He replied to them, "Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I had to be in my Father's house [i.e., the Temple]?" But they did not understand what He meant when He said that to them. So, Jesus went down to Nazareth with them and [continued] to obey them. And His mother kept all these things [stored up] in her heart. And Jesus advanced in wisdom; He grew up and [increased] in favor with God and men.


"Then the kingdom of heaven will be similar to ten bridesmaids who took their lamps and went out to meet the [bride and] groom. [Note: The picture here is that of a newly married couple returning from a festive reception to the groom's home where they continued celebrating and were welcomed by a late evening wedding party] Five of the bridesmaids were foolish and five were sensible. The foolish ones did not take enough olive oil for their lamps with them, read more.
but the sensible ones took [extra] oil in containers, along with their lamps. Now when the [bride and] groom were late [in arriving], the bridesmaids all got drowsy and fell asleep. Then at midnight someone shouted, 'Look, the [bride and] groom are here. Come on, let us go out and meet them.' Then all the bridesmaids woke up and trimmed their lamps [i.e., removed the burnt wicks and replenished their lamps with oil]. The foolish ones said to the sensible ones, 'Give us some of your oil, because our lamps are going out.' But the sensible ones answered, 'There might not be enough for us and you, [so] instead, you should go to the store and buy some for yourselves.' And while they were away [trying] to buy olive oil, the [bride and] groom arrived, and those who were ready [to welcome them] entered the [house where the] wedding reception [was being held] and the door was shut. After that, the other bridesmaids also came asking, 'Sir, Sir, [please] open the door for us!' But he answered them, 'Truly I tell you, I do not know you.' Therefore, you should be watchful, for you do not know the day or hour [i.e., when the Son of man will return]. "For the kingdom of heaven is similar to a man who planned to go on a trip to a distant country, so called his servants and entrusted to each of them a large sum of money [Note: The narrative that follows suggests that the man was turning over some of his assets to financial managers to invest for him]. He gave one servant five talents [Note: This 'talent' was a large sum of money in the form of a certain weight of silver. It was the equivalent of sixty years of a farm laborer's wages, or about $750,000 in income]. He gave two talents to another servant and one talent to another. He gave to each one an amount in keeping with his ability [to invest it wisely], and then left on his trip. The one with the five talents soon invested the money in business transactions which netted him five more. In the same way the one who was given two talents made two more. But the one who was given one talent went and dug a hole in the ground and buried his master's money. Now after a long time the master of these servants returned [from his trip] and proceeded to go over his accounts with each of them. The one who had been given five talents came bringing another five and reported, 'Master, you entrusted me with five talents. Look, I have earned five more with them.' His master replied, 'Well done, you are a good and trustworthy servant. You have been trustworthy over a [relatively] few things, so I will place you over many things. Come and share in your master's joy.' And the one who was given two talents came and reported, 'Master, you entrusted me with two talents. Look, I have earned two more with them.' His master said to him, 'Well done, you are a good and trustworthy servant. You have been trustworthy over a [relatively] few things, [so] I will place you over many things. Come and share in your master's joy.' Then the one who was given [only] one talent came and reported, 'Master, I knew you were a difficult man who reaped where you had not sown, and gathered a harvest where you had not scattered seed, and I was afraid, so I went away and hid your talent in the ground. Look, you [can] have your own talent [back].' But his master said to him, 'You wicked, lazy servant. [Since] you knew that I reaped where I had not sown and gathered where I had not scattered seed, you should have therefore deposited my money in the bank [so] when I returned, [at least] I would have received my own money back, with interest. Take the one talent away from him, therefore, and give it to the servant who had the ten talents. For to every person who has [something], more will be given, so he will have plenty. But from the person who has [virtually] nothing, even that [little bit] he has will be taken away [from him]. Throw out that worthless servant into the [place of] outer darkness, where there will be crying and excruciating pain.


Now the birth of Christ happened this way: When His mother Mary was engaged to marry Joseph, [but] before they had a sexual relationship, she was discovered to be pregnant by [the power of] the Holy Spirit. Now Joseph, her husband [to be], being a man who did what was right, and not wanting to make a public spectacle out of her, decided to break off their engagement privately. But while he was thinking about the matter, [suddenly] an angel from the Lord appeared to him in a dream [i.e., a supernatural revelation given during sleep], saying, "Joseph, you descendant of David, do not be afraid to take Mary to be your wife, for the baby she is carrying is by [the power of] the Holy Spirit. read more.
She is going to have a son and you should name Him Jesus, for He is the One who will save His people from their sins." Now all this happened in order to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet [Isaiah 7:14], saying, "Look, the virgin will become pregnant and have a son, and they will name Him Immanuel," which means "God with us." Then Joseph woke up from his sleep and did what the angel of the Lord commanded him and took Mary to be his wife. [But] he did not have sexual relations with her until [after] she had a son, whom he named Jesus.


"For the kingdom of heaven is similar to a farmer who went out early one morning to hire laborers for his vineyard. When he had agreed with the workers [on wages] for the usual farm laborer's pay for a day's work, he [then] sent them to work in his vineyard. [Note: The coin mentioned here would amount to $60-$84 in 1994, based on $5-$7 an hour for a twelve hour day. This coin also forms the basis for calculating all other monetary references in the New Testament]. He went out about nine o'clock in the morning and saw other unemployed laborers standing [around] in the open shopping market. read more.
He said to them, 'You men also go and work in my vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.' So, they went to work. [Then] he went out again about noon and again at three o'clock in the afternoon and made the same offer. [Finally] he went out [once more] at about five o'clock in the afternoon and found [still] other men standing around. He said, 'Why have you been standing around all day and not working?' They replied, 'Because no one has hired us.' He said to them, 'You men also may go to work in my vineyard.' And when evening came the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, 'Call the workers [in] and pay them their wages, beginning with the last [one hired, then] to the first.' So, when those hired about five o'clock in the afternoon came in, each one received the usual pay for one full day's work. [See note on verse 2]. Then when those who were hired first came [to get paid], they expected to receive more money [than those hired later], but each one received the usual pay for one full day's work also. And when they received it, they complained to the farmer, saying, 'These men [you hired] last have worked only one hour and you gave them wages equal to ours when we carried the heaviest load of the day's work and [put up with] the scorching heat [all day long].' But he answered one of them, saying, 'Friend, I have not done anything wrong to you. Did you not agree with me to accept the usual pay for one full day's work? Take what belongs to you and go on your way. I want to give this last person [hired] the same wages I gave you. Is it against the law for me to do what I want with my own money? Or, is it that your eye is envious because I choose to be so generous?' So, the [person who seems to be] last will be first [i.e., in importance and blessings], but the [person who seems to be] first will [end up] being last."


And it happened on a Sabbath day, when Jesus went to the house of one of the leading Pharisees for a meal, that they [i.e., probably other Pharisees who were also guests] were watching Him closely. And there He saw a certain man suffering from dropsy [Note: This is a condition in which the tissues of the body retain too much fluid]. So, Jesus asked the teachers of the law of Moses and the Pharisees, saying, "Is it permissible by the law of Moses to heal people on the Sabbath day, or not?" read more.
But they did not say anything. So, Jesus took hold of the [sick] man, and [after] healing him, sent him away. Then He said to them, "Which one of you, who has a son or an ox that falls into a well, would not immediately pull him out on a Sabbath day?" And they were not able to give an answer to these things. Then Jesus told a parable to those who had been invited [i.e., the dinner guests at the Pharisee's house. See verse 1], because He noticed how they were choosing places of honor [at the dinner table]. [So], He said to them, "When somebody invites you to a wedding reception, do not recline at the head of the table [Note: See Matt. 23:6], for maybe someone more honorable than you has been invited by the host. Then the one who invited both of you will come [over] and say to you, 'Give this man your seat [at the table],' and then you will be embarrassed and have to move to the least important seat. But when you are invited [i.e., to a wedding reception], go and recline at the least important seat, so that when the host comes [over to you], he will say, 'Friend, move up to a better seat.' Then you will be shown honor in front of everyone at the dinner table. For every person who exalts himself [as important] will be humbled, but the person who humbles himself will be exalted [as important]." Then Jesus also said to the Pharisee who had invited Him [to dinner], "When you prepare a breakfast or a supper, do not invite your friends, or brothers, or relatives or rich neighbors [only], for maybe they will invite you back, and [then] you will be repaid [for your kindness]. But when you prepare a banquet, invite people who are poor, handicapped, crippled and blind [as well]. Then you will receive a blessing, because these people do not have anything to pay you back with, for you will be paid back when righteous people are raised from the dead." And when one of the people who were reclining at the [supper] table with Jesus heard this, he said to Him, "The person who will eat bread in the [coming] kingdom of God is [certainly] blessed." But Jesus replied to him, "A certain man prepared a lavish supper and invited many [guests]. When the supper was about ready, he sent his slave out to tell those who were invited, 'Come, for everything is [now] ready.' Then all of them, in the same way, began to excuse themselves [from attending]. The first one said to the host, 'I just bought some land and I need to go out and look it over, so please excuse me [from attending the supper].' And another person said, 'I just bought five teams of oxen and I need to go and test them out, so please excuse me [from attending the supper].' And the third person said, 'I just got married, so I cannot attend [the supper].' Then the slave returned and told his master about these things. Then the master of the house became angry and said to his slave, 'Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring people who are poor, and handicapped, and blind and crippled in here [i.e., to the supper].' And the slave said, 'Master, I did what you ordered me to do, and still there is room [at the dinner table].' Then the master said to the slave, 'Go out into the roads and along the brushy trails and urge people to attend [the supper] so that my house will be full [of guests].' For I tell you, not one of those who were invited will [even] taste my supper."


Now after these things [happened] the Lord appointed seventy-two other disciples [Note: Some ancient manuscripts say "seventy." This group would have been in addition to the twelve. See Luke 9:1], and sent them two by two on ahead of Him into every town and locality that He planned to visit. And He said to them, "There is certainly plenty to harvest, but there are [too] few people to do the work. You should pray to the Lord of the harvest to send [more] workers out into the field to gather His crop. [So], go on; See, I am sending you out as lambs among wolves. read more.
Do not carry a money belt, or a traveling bag [for personal belongings] or shoes; and do not extend [elaborate] greetings to anyone along the way. And whatever house you enter, first say, 'Let peace be upon this household.' And if a son of peace is there [i.e., a peace-loving person], your [request for] peace will rest upon him. But if he is not [a peace-loving person], your [blessing of] peace will return to [rest on] you. And you should remain in that same house [i.e., the peace-loving one], eating and drinking whatever they serve you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move from house to house [i.e., wasting time]. And into whatever town you enter and are welcomed, eat whatever is placed in front of you, and heal the sick people who live there. Say to them, 'The kingdom of God has come near to you.' But whatever town you enter that does not welcome you, go out into its streets and say [to them], We are wiping off even the dust of your city that has stuck to our feet [in protest] against you. Yet you should know this, that the kingdom of God has come near [to you].' I tell you, the people of Sodom will be shown more leniency on that day [i.e., the day of judgment] than that town will receive. "It is too bad for you, Chorazin! It is too bad for you, Bethsaida! For if the powerful miracles had been performed in Tyre and Sidon which were performed in your presence, they would have repented long ago by sitting in ashes and wearing sackcloth. [Note: This sackcloth was a coarse cloth made of goat hair and indicated deep remorse or mourning]. But Tyre and Sidon will be shown more leniency in the judgment [day] than you will. And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted up [as high] as heaven? [Certainly not], you will be brought down to the unseen place of departed spirits [i.e., you will become obscure or obliterated as a city]. The person who listens to you, [actually] listens to me. And the person who rejects you, [actually] rejects me. And the person who rejects me, [actually] rejects Him who sent me [i.e., God]."


And it happened soon after this that Jesus went to a town called Nain [Note: This was a town of Galilee about Now when He approached the town gate, He saw a dead man being carried out; it was the only son of his widowed mother. And many people from the town were with her. Now when the Lord saw her, He felt very sorry for her and said to her, "Do not cry." read more.
Then He went near the casket and touched it; [immediately] the pallbearers stopped. Jesus said, "Young man, I tell you, get up." And the dead man sat up and began talking. And Jesus gave him [back] to his mother [alive]. Then everyone was gripped with fear and gave honor to God, saying, " [Surely] a great prophet has arisen among us and God's [presence] has come to His people." And the report of this [incident] about Jesus spread throughout Judea and the entire surrounding district.


I was in [i.e., under the influence of] the Holy Spirit on the Lord's day [i.e., Sunday], when I heard behind me a loud voice, like a trumpet, saying, "Write down in a book what you see and send it to the seven churches: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodicia" [Note: These seven congregations were all located in western Asia Minor]. And I turned to see [whose] voice was speaking to me. And when I turned, I saw seven golden lampstands, read more.
and in the middle of the lampstands I saw someone [who looked] like a son of man [i.e., Jesus. See verses 17-18]. He was dressed in a robe that reached down to His feet and He had a golden sash around His chest. And His head and hair [i.e., probably meaning the hairs of His head] were as white as wool, or as snow, and His eyes were like flaming fire. And His feet were like shiny brass, [glowing] as when it is being refined in a furnace, and His voice was like the sound of much rushing water. And He had seven stars in His right hand [See verse 20], and a sharp, double-edged sword came out of His mouth. And His face [shone] as the sun, shining in [all] its brilliance. And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as [though I were] dead. And He placed His right hand on me and said, "Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last, and the Living One. I was dead, and see, I am [now] alive forever and ever! And I possess the keys of death and of the unseen place of departed spirits.


[Now to get to Galilee] it required that Jesus travel through Samaria [Note: Samaria was the next country north of Judea]. So, He arrived at the Samaritan town called Sychar, which was near the piece of property that Jacob had given to his son Joseph. Jacob's [spring-fed] well was there so Jesus, tired from His [long] journey, sat down beside the well just as He was [i.e., before doing anything else]. It was about six o'clock in the morning [Note: This would have been read more.
[About then] a Samaritan woman came [to the well] to draw water. Jesus said to her, "[Please] give me a drink." (Now Jesus' disciples had gone away to town to buy some food). Therefore, the Samaritan woman asked Him, "Why is it that you, being a Jew, would ask a Samaritan woman [like me] for a drink?" (For Jews do not have any fellowship with Samaritans). [Note: The reason for this stemmed from longstanding religious, cultural and ethnic prejudices]. Jesus answered her, "If you [only] knew the [real] gift of God, and who it is that said to you, '[Please], give me a drink,' you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water." The woman [then] said to Him, "Sir, you do not have anything to draw [water] with, and the well is deep. Where will you get that living water? noon if Jewish time were meant]. Are you greater than our forefather Jacob, who gave us this well? He himself and his sons and cattle [all] drank from it." Jesus answered her, "Everyone who drinks this water will get thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never get thirsty [again]. For the water I will give him will become in him [i.e., in his spirit] a spring of water, bubbling up and producing never ending life." [See John 7:38]. The woman [then] said to Him, "Sir, [please] give me [some of] that water, so that I do not get thirsty [again], or have to come all the way here to draw [water]." Jesus replied to her, "Go call your husband and [then] come here." The woman said to Him, "I do not have a husband." Jesus said to her, "You were right when you said, 'I do not have a husband,' because you have had five husbands, and the man you are now living with is not [really] your husband. So, you have told the truth." [Then] the woman said to Jesus, "Sir, I perceive that you are a prophet. Our forefathers worshiped on this mountain [i.e., Mt. Gerizim, which was visible from where they were sitting]; but you say that Jerusalem is the place where people should worship [God]." miles away from Cana]. Jesus replied to her, "[My dear] woman, believe me [when I tell you], the time will come when you people will not worship the Father on this mountain or in Jerusalem. You [Samaritans] do not [really] know what you worship; we [Jews] know what we worship because salvation is from the Jews [i.e., through Jewish prophets, Jewish Scriptures and a Jewish Messiah]. But the time will come, and is now [actually] here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit [i.e., from the heart] and truth [i.e., according to God's revealed will], for these are the people whom the Father seeks to be His worshipers. God is Spirit and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth." [Then] the woman said to Jesus, "I know that Messiah is coming ([He is] the One who is called Christ). And when He does come, He will tell us everything." Jesus replied to her, "I, who am speaking to you, am [the Messiah]." Just about then Jesus' disciples returned [from town], and were surprised to find Him talking with a woman. [Note: It was not customary for a Jewish male to engage a woman in extended conversation in that day, much less a stranger, and certainly not a Samaritan], yet no one said [to Him], "What are you looking for?" or "Why are you talking to her?" So, the woman left her water jar and went back into town and told the people [there], "Come [and] see a man who told me everything I ever did. Can this be the Christ?" [So], the people went out from the town and came to where Jesus was. Meanwhile Jesus' disciples urged Him, saying, "Rabbi, [have something to] eat." But He said to them, "I [already] have food to eat that you do not know about." So, the disciples said to one another, "No one has brought Him anything to eat [have they]?" Jesus answered them, "My food is doing what God, who sent me, wants me to, and accomplishing His work. Are you not [always] saying, 'There are still four months before harvest time comes'? Look, I am telling you [disciples], lift up your eyes and look at the fields, that they are white and ripe for harvest [i.e., people are ready to make a spiritual response]. Already the person who is harvesting [the crop] is being paid for his work, and is gathering a crop for never ending life, so that the one planting and the one harvesting [the crop] may rejoice together. So, the saying is true that one person plants and another harvests [the crop]. I sent you [disciples] to harvest [a crop] that you did not work on; other people have done the work and you have reaped the results of their work." [Note: This is probably an allusion to the preliminary work of preaching done by John, the Immerser, with results occurring under the preaching of the apostles]. Then many Samaritans from Sychar believed in Jesus because of the testimony of the woman, who said, "He told me everything that I ever did." When the Samaritans came to Him, they urged Jesus to stay with them, so He remained there for two days. And many more people believed [in Jesus] because of His [own] words, and they said to the woman, "Now we believe, not just because of what you said, but because we have heard [it] for ourselves and know that this is truly the Savior of the world."


When Pilate heard this, he asked if the man were a Galilean. PM on Friday]. And when he realized that Jesus was under Herod's [political] jurisdiction, he sent Him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem at that time. read more.
Now Herod was very pleased when he saw Jesus for he had wanted to see Him for a long time. He had heard [things] about Jesus and [now] hoped to see Him perform a miracle. So, he asked Him many questions, but Jesus did not respond to any [of them]. Then the leading priests and experts in the law of Moses stood up and viciously charged Him [i.e., with false accusations]. Then Herod and his soldiers treated Jesus with contempt and mocked Him. They dressed Him in a luxurious robe and then sent Him back to Pilate. So, Herod and Pilate became mutual friends that very day. (Now before this they had been enemies).


So, six days before the Passover Festival [began], Jesus went to Bethany, where Lazarus lived. He was the man Jesus [had] raised from the dead. There Mary and Martha prepared a meal for Jesus. Martha served it while Lazarus was among those who reclined at the table with Him. [Note: See Matt. 23:6]. Then Mary took about a pint of expensive, aromatic perfume; [it was] genuine nard [Note: This was a sweet-smelling herb] and poured [some of] it on Jesus' feet and wiped them with her hair. The [whole] house was filled with the fragrant scent of the perfume. read more.
But one of Jesus' disciples named Judas Iscariot, who later turned Him over [i.e., to the Jewish authorities], said, "Why was this perfume not sold for a large sum of money [Note: The amount here was equivalent to three hundred days of a farm laborer's pay, or over $20,000 in 1994] and [then] the money given to poor people?" Now he did not say this because he cared about poor people, but because he was in charge of the money bag, and being a thief, he used to steal from it. So, Jesus said, "Leave her alone. Let her keep [the rest of] it for [use on] the day of my burial. For you will always have poor people among you, but you will not always have me." When a large crowd of Jews learned that Jesus was there [in Bethany], they came not only because of Him, but also to see Lazarus whom He had raised from the dead.


Eight days later it was time to circumcise Jesus [i.e., to perform the Jewish rite of identity, signifying the responsibility to observe the law of Moses], and they named Him Jesus, which was the name given by the angel before He was [even] conceived. Then when the days of their purification according to the law of Moses were completed [Note: This was a set procedure required for a Jewish mother on the birth of a child. See Lev. 12:1-8], Joseph and Mary brought Jesus up to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord. (It is recorded in the law of the Lord [Ex. 13:2, 12] that every firstborn male child be considered holy [i.e., specially dedicated] to the Lord.) read more.
They came to offer a sacrifice of two doves or two young pigeons, in accordance with what is written in the law of Moses. Now there was a righteous and devoted man named Simeon at Jerusalem, who was expecting the consolation of the Israelites [i.e., the coming of the Messiah to save them], and the Holy Spirit was upon him. Now it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die until he had seen the Lord's Christ [i.e., God's, specially chosen one]. And he was led by the Holy Spirit into the Temple, and when Joseph and Mary brought the baby Jesus in, so they could do to Him what was customary under the law of Moses, Simeon took Jesus in his arms, praised God and said, "Master, you may now allow your servant to be released [i.e., die] in peace, according to what you said. For my eyes have seen your salvation [i.e., Jesus], which [i.e., whom] you have prepared before all people [i.e., for their benefit], [to be] a light for revealing [God's way of salvation] to the [unconverted] Gentiles, and a [source of] glory to your people, the Israelites." And Jesus' [step-] father and His mother were amazed at the things said about Him. Then Simeon [asked God to] bless them and said to Jesus' mother Mary, "Look, many Israelites will be caused to fall [i.e., into spiritual ruin] or rise [i.e., to spiritual renewal] because of Him. And [He will be] a 'sign' [for people] to speak against, and thus reveal the thoughts of many hearts. Yes, and a sword will cut you [Mary] to the heart [i.e., causing you inward pain]." And there was a woman prophet named Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, from the tribe of Asher [i.e., she was a descendant of one of Jacob's son]. (She was very old, having lived with her husband for [only] seven years after being married, and has been a widow [all these years], and is now eighty-four years old.) She has never left the Temple, but worships [God] by fasting [i.e., going without food and/or water for religious reasons] and praying night and day. She came forward at that very time and thanked God [in prayer] and spoke about the child [Jesus] to everyone [in the Temple area] who was expecting the redemption of the people of Jerusalem [i.e., their liberation from sin].


Then one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have a meal with him. So, He went to the Pharisee's house and reclined at the [dinner] table. [Note: Matt. 23:6]. And when a sinful woman from the town learned that He was having dinner at the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster [i.e., stone] jar of liquid perfume, and stood behind Jesus, at His feet, crying. She began wetting His feet with her tears and wiping them dry with the hair of her head. Then she kissed His feet and poured the perfume on them. read more.
Now when the Pharisee who had invited Jesus saw this, he said to himself, "If this man were a prophet, he would have known who touched him and what kind of a woman she was --- a sinner." Then Jesus said to him, "Simon [See verse 43], I have something to say to you." And he replied, "Teacher, [go ahead and] say it." [Jesus then gave this parable]: A certain moneylender had two men who owed him money; one owed him five hundred coins [Note: The total amount was days of a farm laborer's pay, or about $35,000 in 1994], and the other man [owed him] fifty coins [Note: About $3,500 in 1994]. When these two men did not have [the money] to repay him, the moneylender canceled [the debts of] both of them. Now which of them will love him more?" Simon answered, "The one who had the largest debt canceled, I suppose." Jesus said to him, "You are right." Then Jesus turned to the woman [who had just poured the perfume on Him] and said to Simon, "Do you see this woman? I came into your house and you did not give me any water for [washing] my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them dry with her hair. You did not give me a kiss [of greeting], but from the time I came in [to your house] she has not stopped kissing my feet. You did not pour [aromatic] oil on my head, but she poured perfume on my feet. For this reason, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven, for she has loved much. [Note: This suggests that her forgiveness was the result of her loving, but the point Jesus makes better fits the idea that her forgiveness produced love]. But the person who is forgiven of little [i.e., of only a few sins], loves [only] a little bit." Then Jesus said to the woman, "Your sins are forgiven." And those who were reclining at the [dinner] table with Him began saying among themselves, "Who is this person who can even forgive sins?" Then Jesus said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you [i.e., from condemnation]. Go [away] in peace."


Now there was a Pharisee, a leader of the Jews, named Nicodemus. This man went to Jesus one night and said to Him, "Rabbi, we [i.e., speaking of himself and other Jewish leaders] know that you are a Teacher sent from God, for no one could perform these [miraculous] signs that you are doing unless God were with Him." Jesus said to him, "Truly, truly, I tell you, a person cannot see the kingdom of God [i.e., enter it. See verse 5], unless he is born from above [Note: The words "from above" are also used in verse 31, but in this place they could also mean "again," or "anew" and refer to the source of a person's second birth]. read more.
Nicodemus said to Him, "How can a man be born [again] after he is [already] old? He cannot enter his mother's womb a second time and be born, can he?" Jesus answered him, "Truly, truly, I tell you, a person cannot enter the kingdom of God unless he is born out of water and the Holy Spirit. Whoever is born from human parents is a human being; and whoever is born from the Holy Spirit is a spiritual being. So, do not be surprised that I have said to you, 'You must be born from above." [See note on verse 3]. The wind blows wherever it wants to, and you can hear the sound of it, without knowing where it came from or where it is going. So it is with everyone who is born from the Holy Spirit." Then Nicodemus asked Jesus, "How can these things happen?" Jesus answered him, "Are you a teacher of the Israelites and [yet] you do not understand these things? Truly, truly, I tell you, we [i.e., Jesus and His disciples] speak about what we know, and testify about what we have seen, but you do not accept our testimony. If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe [it], how will you believe [it] if I tell you about heavenly things? And no one has gone up to heaven except the One who has come down from heaven, [even] the Son of man. {{Most translations do not contain the added words "who is in heaven"}}. And [just] like Moses lifted up the snake [on the pole] in the wilderness [Num. 21:9], so the Son of man must be lifted up [on the cross] so that whoever believes in Him would have never ending life." [Note: Some translations extend Jesus' conversation with Nicodemus through verse 21]. For God loved the world [of sinners] so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that every person who believes in Him would not [have to] be destroyed, but have never ending life. For God did not send His Son into the world to be its judge [i.e., to condemn it], but [rather] so that the people of the world could be saved [from condemnation] though Him. The person who believes in Him will not be condemned, but the one who does not believe in Him has already been condemned, because he did not believe in the name of God's one and only Son. Now this is [how God's] judgment [works]: The Light [See 1:5-9] has come into the world, but people loved darkness [i.e., sin] rather than the Light, because their deeds were evil. For every person who practices evil things hates the light [of truth] and does not come to it, for fear of having his deeds exposed [as sinful]. But the person who does what is [according to the] truth [i.e., good things] comes to the light so that his deeds may be shown to have been produced by God.


Jesus traveled throughout all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the [coming] kingdom and healing all kinds of diseases and illnesses. But when He saw the large crowds He felt compassion for them because they were distressed and disoriented like sheep without a shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, "Certainly there is plenty to harvest but there are [too] few people to do the work." read more.
"You should pray to the Lord of the harvest to send [more] workers out into the field to gather His crop."


About that time Mary made a hurried trip to a Judean town in the hill country. [Note: This was be the same province in which Jerusalem was located]. [Upon arriving] she entered the home of Zacharias and greeted [his wife] Elizabeth. And it happened when Elizabeth heard Mary greet her, the baby in Elizabeth's womb "kicked," and she was filled with the Holy Spirit. read more.
Then she spoke out in a loud voice and said, " [Mary], you are [truly] blessed [from] among [all] women, and the child you will bear [i.e., Jesus] is blessed [as well]. But why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to [visit] me? For listen, when I heard your voice greeting me, the baby in my womb "kicked" for joy. And she who [has] believed [the promises made by the Lord] is [truly] blessed, for the things which have been spoken to her [i.e., to Mary] by the Lord will [indeed] be fulfilled." Then Mary said, "My soul lifts up the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God, my Savior. For He has looked favorably on the humble circumstances of His servant-girl. And consider this, all generations of people will call me 'blessed' from now on. For the Mighty One has done great things for me, and His name is holy. He shows mercy to generation after generation of people who have reverence for Him. He has demonstrated power with His arm. He has scattered those who are proud in the thoughts of their heart. He has dethroned rulers and has exalted humble people. He has filled the hungry with good things and has sent the rich away empty-handed. (As He said to our forefathers), He has helped His servants, the Israelites, [showing] that He remembered to be merciful to Abraham and his descendants forever." So, Mary stayed with [her relative] Elizabeth for about three months [i.e., until about the time John was born. See 1:26-31], and then returned to her home.


Now when they had gone an angel from the Lord appeared to Joseph in a [supernatural] dream, saying, "Get up and take the young child and His mother and hurry to Egypt. Stay there for as long as I tell you to, for Herod will be looking for the young child in order to kill Him." So he got up, took the young child and His mother at night and went to Egypt. They stayed there until Herod died, so that what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet would be fulfilled, saying [Hosea 11:1], "I [i.e., God] called my Son out of Egypt." read more.
When Herod saw that he had been tricked by the astrologer/sages, he was furious and sent out [his soldiers] to kill all the baby boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity. This was done to those from two years old and under, basing [their decision] on the exact time determined from the astrologer/sages. This fulfilled what was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet, saying, [Jer. 31:15], "A voice was heard in [the town of] Ramah [Note: This was a village near Jerusalem, where Rachel was buried], with crying and deep mourning. It was Rachel crying for her children [Note: Initially this was a reference to the Israelites who were taken to Babylonian captivity. See Jer. 29-31]. She refused to be comforted because they were dead." Then when Herod was dead, an angel from the Lord appeared in a [supernatural] dream to Joseph [while he was still] in Egypt, saying, "Get up, take the young child and His mother, and go [back] to the country of Israel, for those who had tried to take the young child's life are [now] dead." So he got up, took the young child and His mother and went [back] to the country of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was then the king of Judea, in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go back. Then, being warned by God in a [supernatural] dream, he went on up to the region called Galilee, and settled in a town called Nazareth, so that it could fulfill what was spoken by the prophets [Isa. 11:1 in the Hebrew text] that Jesus would be called a Nazarene.


And when they came to Bethsaida some people brought a blind man to Jesus and begged Him to touch him [i.e., for healing]. [So], He took hold of the blind man by his hand and brought him out of the village. When Jesus spit [and put His saliva] on his eyes [See 7:33 for a similar use of His saliva in healing] and placed His hands on him [for healing], He asked him, "Can you see anything?" The man looked up and said, " [Yes], I see people, but they look like trees walking around." read more.
Then Jesus again placed His hands on his eyes; the man stared intently, then his sight was [completely] restored and he was able to see everything clearly. miles north of Lake Galilee]. On their way, He asked His disciples, "Who are people saying that I am?" Then Jesus sent him home, saying, "Do not even go through the village [on your way]."


The Word [already] existed in the beginning [of time]. [Note: This is a reference to the preexistence of Jesus. See verse 14]. And the Word was with God and the Word was [what] God [was]. This Word existed with God from the beginning [of time]. Everything came into being through this Word, and apart from Him not a single thing came into being. read more.
Life existed in Him; and that Life [was what] enlightened mankind [spiritually]. PM if Jewish time were meant]. And [His] light continued to shine, [even] in the darkness [of the world], and that darkness did not overcome Him [or, did not fully understand Him]. There was a man sent from God whose name was John [the Immerser]. He came to be a witness, so that he might testify concerning that Light, so that all people would believe [in Jesus] through him [i.e., through his testimony. See Acts 19:4]. He himself was not that Light, but came [only] to testify concerning that Light. [Now] the true Light, who enlightens all mankind, was [indeed] coming into the world [i.e., to earth]. [Actually] He was in the world [already], for the world came into being through Him, but the world did not acknowledge Him. [Then] He came to His own [world, while on earth], but His own [people, the Israelites] did not welcome Him. But He gave all those who did welcome Him the opportunity of becoming children of God by believing in His name [i.e., as the Messiah]. [Such people] were born of God, not of blood ties [i.e., from physical descendants], nor of the will of the flesh [i.e., merely from a sexual desire], nor of the will of man [i.e., from a husband's desire for offspring]. [Eventually] this Word became a human being and lived among us [Note: The word "lived" here refers to pitching a temporary tent]. (And we saw His splendor; such splendor as belongs to the Father's only Son), full of God's favor and truth. John gave testimony about Jesus, shouting out, "This person is the one about whom I said, 'He who will come after me ranks above me because He existed before me.'" For we have all received from His full richness one favor after another. For the law was given through Moses; [but] God's favor and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God [i.e., His full splendor], but God, the only conceived [and eventually born Son], who is at the Father's side, has shown us who He is.


Then Mary said, "My soul lifts up the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God, my Savior. For He has looked favorably on the humble circumstances of His servant-girl. And consider this, all generations of people will call me 'blessed' from now on. read more.
For the Mighty One has done great things for me, and His name is holy. He shows mercy to generation after generation of people who have reverence for Him. He has demonstrated power with His arm. He has scattered those who are proud in the thoughts of their heart. He has dethroned rulers and has exalted humble people. He has filled the hungry with good things and has sent the rich away empty-handed. (As He said to our forefathers), He has helped His servants, the Israelites, [showing] that He remembered to be merciful to Abraham and his descendants forever."


Then on the third day [i.e., since Jesus' conversation with Nathaniel. See 1:47], a wedding took place in Cana in Galilee. [Note: This was a small town near Nazareth]. Jesus' mother was there and Jesus and His disciples had been invited to it also. Now when they had run out of wine, Jesus' mother said to Him, "They do not have any more wine [left]." read more.
So, Jesus said to her, "[My dear] woman, what do you want me to do [about it]? My time [i.e., to be revealed to people as the Messiah] has not yet come." His mother said to the servants, "Do whatever He tells you to do." Now there were six clay water jars there, used by the Jews for ceremonial washings [i.e., for hands, utensils, etc.]. Each one held from Jesus said to them, "Fill the jars with water." So, the servants filled them clear full. Then He said to them, "Now pour [some of it] out and take it to the banquet host." So, they took some to him, and when the banquet host tasted the water, which had [now] been turned into wine, he did not know where it had come from. (But the servants who had poured out the water knew [full well]). So, the banquet host called the groom and said to him, "Everyone sets out the best wine first, and when people have had plenty to drink, he then sets out the poor quality [wine]. But you have kept the best wine until now." [Note: See Barnes Notes and The Gospel of John by Butler for evidence suggesting that this was not intoxicating wine]. This was the beginning of Jesus' [miraculous] signs, which He performed in Cana in Galilee. [In doing this] He demonstrated His glorious power and His disciples believed in Him. After this incident, Jesus, His mother, His [half-] brothers and His disciples went down to Capernaum [i.e., located on the north shore of Lake Galilee] and stayed there a few days.


Now in the sixth month [of Elizabeth's pregnancy] the angel Gabriel was sent from God to the Galilean town of Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. The virgin's name was Mary. The angel came to her and said, "Greetings, you are someone greatly favored [i.e., by God]; the Lord is with you." read more.
But she became very troubled by what he said and wondered what such a greeting could mean. Then the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid Mary, for you have received favor from God. And consider this, you will become pregnant and give birth to a son and you will name Him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Highest [i.e., God], and the Lord will give Him the throne of His forefather King David. And He will rule over the [spiritual] descendants of Jacob forever and there will be no end to His kingdom." And Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I have never had sex with a man?" The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Highest [i.e., God] will overshadow you. Therefore, the child you carry will be called the holy Son of God. And consider this, your relative Elizabeth is also pregnant with a son in spite of her old age, and [even though] she was said to be unable to have children, she is now six months along. For nothing that God says [will happen] is impossible." And Mary said, "Here I am, the Lord's slave-girl; let it happen to me according to what you say." Then the angel left her.


So, Jesus [finally] entered Jericho and was traveling through it. Just then, there appeared a man named Zacchaeus, who was a wealthy, chief tax collector. He was trying to see which one was Jesus, but could not due to the large crowd and [because] he was so short. read more.
So, he ran on ahead [of the crowd] and climbed up a mulberry tree [Note: This was a tree that produced a fig-like fruit] in order to see Jesus, who was supposed to pass that way [soon]. B.C. See Matt. 2:22]. And when Jesus came to the tree, He said to him, "Zacchaeus, hurry and come down [from that tree], for I need to stay at your house today." So, he came down immediately and welcomed Jesus gladly. And when the crowd saw this, they began complaining [i.e., because Zacchaeus was a despised tax collector] and said, "He is going to lodge with a sinful man." Then Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, "Look, Lord, I [plan to] give half of my possessions to poor people. And if I have cheated anyone out of something, [I promise] to repay them four times as much." Then Jesus said to him, "Salvation has come to this house today, since he too [i.e., Zacchaeus] is a descendant of Abraham. For the Son of man came to search for and save those who were lost."


And it happened as Jesus finished praying at a certain place that one of His disciples said to Him, "Lord, teach us [how] to pray, just like John [the Immerser] taught his disciples." And He said to them, "When you pray you should say, 'Father, may your name be highly honored. May your kingdom come [to earth]. Give us day by day our bread for each day. read more.
And forgive us of our sins, for we ourselves also forgive everyone who has wronged us. And do not allow us to be put to the test.'" And Jesus said to His disciples, "Suppose one of you who has a friend would go to him at midnight and say to him, ' [Please] lend me three loaves of bread, for a friend of mine has come to [visit] me while on a trip and I do not have anything to feed him?' Then the man will answer from inside [his house], 'Do not bother me. My door is [already] locked, my children are [already] in bed with me and I cannot get up to give you anything.' I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him something because he is a friend, yet because of his friend's persistence, he will [eventually] get up and give him whatever he needs. And I tell you, ask [God for something] and it will be given to you; look [to God for something] and you will find it; knock [on the door of opportunity] and it will be opened up to you. For every person who asks will [certainly] receive; and the one who looks will [certainly] find; and to the person who knocks, the door will [certainly] be opened up. And what father among you, whose son asks [him] {{Some ancient manuscripts add for a loaf of bread, will give him a stone [instead]? Or, [if he asks]}} for a fish, will give him a snake [instead]? Or, if he asks [him] for an egg, will give him a scorpion [instead]? [Note: While at rest a scorpion rolls up in a ball that resembles an egg]. If then you know how to give good gifts to your children, even though you are sinful [human beings], how much more [likely] is it that your Father in heaven will give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?"


Now there were [some] shepherds in that region who were living in the fields and guarding their flocks [of sheep] at night. [Suddenly] an angel from the Lord [was seen] standing near them and the glorious presence of the Lord shone around them, and they were very afraid. And the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid; for look, I am bringing good news that will cause great joy to all people. read more.
For a Savior has been born today in David's city [i.e., Bethlehem], who is Christ the Lord [i.e., God's specially chosen one]. And this is the sign [that will verify it] to you: You will find a baby wrapped in [linen] cloths lying in an animal's feeding trough." Then suddenly there appeared with the angel a large number of the heavenly "army" [i.e., of angels], who were praising God and saying, "May there be glory to God in the highest [heavens], and may there be peace on earth among men who are pleasing to God." And it happened when the angels left them and returned to heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, "Let us go to Bethlehem now and see what all happened that the Lord told us about." So, they went quickly and found both Mary and Joseph with the baby, lying in the animal's feeding trough. And when they saw this, they told [everyone] what the angel had said about this baby. And all who heard it marveled at the things the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured all these things and wondered about them [often]. Then the shepherds returned [to their fields], honoring and praising God for everything they had heard and seen, for it all happened just as they had been told.


Now Jesus was born in Bethlehem [a small town] in Judea during the time when Herod [the Great] was king [of Judea]. About that time some astrologer/sages from the east [i.e., Persia] came to Jerusalem, saying, "Where is the one who was born to be king of the Jews? For we saw a star [signifying his birth while we were still] in the east, and have come here to worship him." And when King Herod heard this, he and the entire city of Jerusalem were [very] upset. read more.
So, he gathered all the leading priests and experts in the law of Moses from among the people and asked them where the Christ [child] was to be born. They replied to him, "In Bethlehem of Judea, for this is what was written by the prophet [Micah 5:2], And you, Bethlehem in the country of Judah, are not among the least [towns in furnishing] rulers for Judah, for you will produce a leader who will become shepherd of my [i.e., God's] people Israel.'" Then Herod summoned the astrologer/sages and learned from them exactly when the star had appeared. So, he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, "Go and find out the details about the young child, and when you have found him, come and tell me, so I can go and worship him myself." After hearing the king they left and the star, which they had seen [while still] in the east, moved on ahead of them until it stopped over [the house] where the young child was staying. [See verse 11]. And when they saw the star, they were extremely happy. Then they went into the house and saw the young child with His mother Mary. They fell to the ground and worshiped Him, and unpacking their treasures, they offered Him gifts of gold, incense and aromatic spices. Then they were warned by God in a [supernatural] dream not to return to Herod, so they left and returned to their own country by a different route.


Then He told them this parable: A certain man had a fig tree [which had been] planted in his orchard. When he came looking for figs on it, he did not find any. So, he said to the orchard worker, "Look, I have been coming [here] looking for figs for three years now, but have not found any. Cut down the tree, [for] why should it waste the space [i.e., by not producing]?" And the orchard worker answered him, "Leave it alone for [just] this year, sir, until I cultivate it and fertilize it. read more.
And [then] if it begins to produce, fine; but if it does not, [then] you should cut it down."


[Then] blind and crippled people came to Him in the Temple and He healed them.


And it happened soon after this that Jesus went through one town and village after another, preaching and proclaiming the good news about the kingdom of God. [Traveling] with Him were the twelve apostles and certain women who had been healed from [domination by] evil spirits and diseases. [These women were] Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven evil spirits had been driven out, and Joanna, the wife of Chuzas, Herod's property manager, and Susanna and many others. These [all] had provided the material support for the group from their own means.


Now it happened in those days that a decree was sent out from Caesar Augustus [the Emperor of the Roman Empire] requiring [people from] the whole empire to be registered [i.e., for taxation purposes]. This was the first registration made while Quirinius was governor of Syria. And everyone went to register in his own home town. read more.
So, Joseph also went from the Galilean town of Nazareth to David's town, which was the Judean town of Bethlehem, because he was among the descendants and family of David. [He went] to register, along with Mary, who was engaged to him and who was pregnant [at the time]. And it happened while they were there that the due date came for her to have the baby. So, she bore her firstborn Son and wrapped Him in [linen] cloths and laid Him in an animal's feeding trough because there was no room for them in the lodge.




Eight days later it was time to circumcise Jesus [i.e., to perform the Jewish rite of identity, signifying the responsibility to observe the law of Moses], and they named Him Jesus, which was the name given by the angel before He was [even] conceived.