Bible Society of South Africa

Bible Reading Plan – Day 298

Bible text(s)

The Widow's Offering

1Jesus looked round and saw rich people dropping their gifts in the temple treasury, 2and he also saw a very poor widow dropping in two little copper coins. 3He said, “I tell you that this poor widow put in more than all the others. 4For the others offered their gifts from what they had to spare of their riches; but she, poor as she is, gave all she had to live on.”

Jesus Speaks of the Destruction of the Temple

5Some of the disciples were talking about the Temple, how beautiful it looked with its fine stones and the gifts offered to God. Jesus said, 6“All this you see — the time will come when not a single stone here will be left in its place; every one will be thrown down.”

Troubles and Persecutions

7“Teacher,” they asked, “when will this be? And what will happen in order to show that the time has come for it to take place?”

8Jesus said, “Be on guard; don't be deceived. Many men, claiming to speak for me, will come and say, ‘I am he!’ and, ‘The time has come!’ But don't follow them. 9Don't be afraid when you hear of wars and revolutions; such things must happen first, but they do not mean that the end is near.”

10He went on to say, “Countries will fight each other; kingdoms will attack one another. 11There will be terrible earthquakes, famines, and plagues everywhere; there will be strange and terrifying things coming from the sky. 12Before all these things take place, however, you will be arrested and persecuted; you will be handed over to be tried in synagogues and be put in prison; you will be brought before kings and rulers for my sake. 13This will be your chance to tell the Good News. 14Make up your minds beforehand not to worry about how you will defend yourselves, 15because I will give you such words and wisdom that none of your enemies will be able to refute or contradict what you say. 16You will be handed over by your parents, your brothers, your relatives, and your friends; and some of you will be put to death. 17Everyone will hate you because of me. 18But not a single hair from your heads will be lost. 19Stand firm, and you will save yourselves.

Jesus Speaks of the Destruction of Jerusalem

20“When you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then you will know that it will soon be destroyed. 21Then those who are in Judea must run away to the hills; those who are in the city must leave, and those who are out in the country must not go into the city. 22For those will be ‘The Days of Punishment’, to make all that the Scriptures say come true. 23How terrible it will be in those days for women who are pregnant and for mothers with little babies! Terrible distress will come upon this land, and God's punishment will fall on this people. 24Some will be killed by the sword, and others will be taken as prisoners to all countries; and the heathen will trample over Jerusalem until their time is up.

The Coming of the Son of Man

25“There will be strange things happening to the sun, the moon, and the stars. On earth whole countries will be in despair, afraid of the roar of the sea and the raging tides. 26People will faint from fear as they wait for what is coming over the whole earth, for the powers in space will be driven from their courses. 27Then the Son of Man will appear, coming in a cloud with great power and glory. 28When these things begin to happen, stand up and raise your heads, because your salvation is near.”

The Lesson of the Fig Tree

29Then Jesus told them this parable: “Think of the fig tree and all the other trees. 30When you see their leaves beginning to appear, you know that summer is near. 31In the same way, when you see these things happening, you will know that the Kingdom of God is about to come.

32“Remember that all these things will take place before the people now living have all died. 33Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.

The Need to Watch

34“Be on your guard! Don't let yourselves become occupied with too much feasting and drinking and with the worries of this life, or that Day may suddenly catch you 35like a trap. For it will come upon all people everywhere on earth. 36Be on the alert and pray always that you will have the strength to go safely through all those things that will happen and to stand before the Son of Man.”

37Jesus spent those days teaching in the Temple, and when evening came, he would go out and spend the night on the Mount of Olives. 38Early each morning all the people went to the Temple to listen to him.

The Plot against Jesus

1The time was near for the Festival of Unleavened Bread, which is called the Passover. 2The chief priests and the teachers of the Law were afraid of the people, and so they were trying to find a way of putting Jesus to death secretly.

Judas Agrees to Betray Jesus

3Then Satan entered Judas, called Iscariot, who was one of the twelve disciples. 4So Judas went off and spoke with the chief priests and the officers of the temple guard about how he could betray Jesus to them. 5They were pleased and offered to pay him money. 6Judas agreed to it and started looking for a good chance to hand Jesus over to them without the people knowing about it.

Jesus Prepares to Eat the Passover Meal

7The day came during the Festival of Unleavened Bread when the lambs for the Passover meal were to be killed. 8Jesus sent off Peter and John with these instructions: “Go and get the Passover meal ready for us to eat.”

9“Where do you want us to get it ready?” they asked him.

10He answered, “As you go into the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him into the house that he enters, 11and say to the owner of the house: ‘The Teacher says to you, Where is the room where my disciples and I will eat the Passover meal?’ 12He will show you a large furnished room upstairs, where you will get everything ready.”

13They went off and found everything just as Jesus had told them, and they prepared the Passover meal.

The Lord's Supper

14When the hour came, Jesus took his place at the table with the apostles. 15He said to them, “I have wanted so much to eat this Passover meal with you before I suffer! 16For I tell you, I will never eat it until it is given its full meaning in the Kingdom of God.”

17Then Jesus took a cup, gave thanks to God, and said, “Take this and share it among yourselves. 18I tell you that from now on I will not drink this wine until the Kingdom of God comes.”

19Then he took a piece of bread, gave thanks to God, broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in memory of me.” 20In the same way, he gave them the cup after the supper, saying, “This cup is God's new covenant sealed with my blood, which is poured out for you.

21“But, look! The one who betrays me is here at the table with me! 22The Son of Man will die as God has decided, but how terrible for that man who betrays him!”

23Then they began to ask among themselves which one of them it could be who was going to do this.

The Argument about Greatness

24An argument broke out among the disciples as to which one of them should be thought of as the greatest. 25Jesus said to them, “The kings of the pagans have power over their people, and the rulers claim the title ‘Friends of the People’. 26But this is not the way it is with you; rather, the greatest one among you must be like the youngest, and the leader must be like the servant. 27Who is greater, the one who sits down to eat or the one who serves? The one who sits down, of course. But I am among you as one who serves.

28“You have stayed with me all through my trials; 29and just as my Father has given me the right to rule, so I will give you the same right. 30You will eat and drink at my table in my Kingdom, and you will sit on thrones to rule over the twelve tribes of Israel.

Jesus Predicts Peter's Denial

31“Simon, Simon! Listen! Satan has received permission to test all of you, to separate the good from the bad, as a farmer separates the wheat from the chaff. 32But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith will not fail. And when you turn back to me, you must strengthen your brothers.”

33Peter answered, “Lord, I am ready to go to prison with you and to die with you!”

34“I tell you, Peter,” Jesus said, “the cock will not crow tonight until you have said three times that you do not know me.”

Purse, Bag, and Sword

35Then Jesus asked his disciples, “When I sent you out that time without purse, bag, or shoes, did you lack anything?”

“Not a thing,” they answered.

36“But now,” Jesus said, “whoever has a purse or a bag must take it; and whoever has no sword must sell his coat and buy one. 37For I tell you that the scripture which says, ‘He shared the fate of criminals,’ must come true about me, because what was written about me is coming true.”

38The disciples said, “Look! Here are two swords, Lord!”

“That is enough!” he replied.

Jesus Prays on the Mount of Olives

39Jesus left the city and went, as he usually did, to the Mount of Olives; and the disciples went with him. 40When he arrived at the place, he said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.”

41Then he went off from them about the distance of a stone's throw and knelt down and prayed. 42“Father,” he said, “if you will, take this cup of suffering away from me. Not my will, however, but your will be done.” 43An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. 44In great anguish he prayed even more fervently; his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.

45Rising from his prayer, he went back to the disciples and found them asleep, worn out by their grief. 46He said to them, “Why are you sleeping? Get up and pray that you will not fall into temptation.”

The Arrest of Jesus

47Jesus was still speaking when a crowd arrived, led by Judas, one of the twelve disciples. He came up to Jesus to kiss him. 48But Jesus said, “Judas, is it with a kiss that you betray the Son of Man?”

49When the disciples who were with Jesus saw what was going to happen, they asked, “Shall we use our swords, Lord?” 50And one of them struck the High Priest's slave and cut off his right ear.

51But Jesus said, “Enough of this!” He touched the man's ear and healed him.

52Then Jesus said to the chief priests and the officers of the temple guard and the elders who had come there to get him, “Did you have to come with swords and clubs, as though I were an outlaw? 53I was with you in the Temple every day, and you did not try to arrest me. But this is your hour to act, when the power of darkness rules.”

Peter Denies Jesus

54They arrested Jesus and took him away into the house of the High Priest; and Peter followed at a distance. 55A fire had been lit in the centre of the courtyard, and Peter joined those who were sitting round it. 56When one of the servant women saw him sitting there at the fire, she looked straight at him and said, “This man too was with Jesus!”

57But Peter denied it, “Woman, I don't even know him!”

58After a little while a man noticed Peter and said, “You are one of them, too!”

But Peter answered, “Man, I am not!”

59And about an hour later another man insisted strongly, “There isn't any doubt that this man was with Jesus, because he also is a Galilean!”

60But Peter answered, “Man, I don't know what you are talking about!”

At once, while he was still speaking, a cock crowed. 61The Lord turned round and looked straight at Peter, and Peter remembered that the Lord had said to him, “Before the cock crows tonight, you will say three times that you do not know me.” 62Peter went out and wept bitterly.

Jesus is Mocked and Beaten

63The men who were guarding Jesus mocked him and beat him. 64They blindfolded him and asked him, “Who hit you? Guess!” 65And they said many other insulting things to him.

Jesus is Brought before the Council

66When day came, the elders, the chief priests, and the teachers of the Law met together, and Jesus was brought before the Council. 67“Tell us,” they said, “are you the Messiah?”

He answered, “If I tell you, you will not believe me; 68and if I ask you a question, you will not answer. 69But from now on the Son of Man will be seated on the right of Almighty God.”

70They all said, “Are you, then, the Son of God?”

He answered them, “You say that I am.”

71And they said, “We don't need any witnesses! We ourselves have heard what he said!”

Luke 21:1-22:71GNBOpen in Bible reader
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