Many people have done their best to write a report of the things that have taken place among us. 2They wrote what we have been told by those who saw these things from the beginning and who proclaimed the message. 3And so, your Excellency, because I have carefully studied all these matters from their beginning, I thought it would be good to write an orderly account for you. 4I do this so that you will know the full truth about everything which you have been taught.
The Birth of John the Baptist is Announced
5During the time when Herod was king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly order of Abijah. His wife's name was Elizabeth; she also belonged to a priestly family. 6They both lived good lives in God's sight and obeyed fully all the Lord's laws and commands. 7They had no children because Elizabeth could not have any, and she and Zechariah were both very old.
8One day Zechariah was doing his work as a priest in the Temple, taking his turn in the daily service. 9According to the custom followed by the priests, he was chosen by lot to burn incense on the altar. So he went into the Temple of the Lord, 10while the crowd of people outside prayed during the hour when the incense was burnt.
11An angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the right of the altar where the incense was burnt. 12When Zechariah saw him, he was alarmed and felt afraid. 13But the angel said to him, “Don't be afraid, Zechariah! God has heard your prayer, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son. You are to name him John. 14How glad and happy you will be, and how happy many others will be when he is born! 15He will be a great man in the Lord's sight. He must not drink any wine or strong drink. From his very birth he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, 16and he will bring back many of the people of Israel to the Lord their God. 17He will go ahead of the Lord, strong and mighty like the prophet Elijah. He will bring fathers and children together again; he will turn disobedient people back to the way of thinking of the righteous; he will get the Lord's people ready for him.”
18Zechariah said to the angel, “How shall I know if this is so? I am an old man, and my wife is old also.”
19“I am Gabriel,” the angel answered. “I stand in the presence of God, who sent me to speak to you and tell you this good news. 20But you have not believed my message, which will come true at the right time. Because you have not believed, you will be unable to speak; you will remain silent until the day my promise to you comes true.”
21In the meantime the people were waiting for Zechariah and wondering why he was spending such a long time in the Temple. 22When he came out, he could not speak to them, and so they knew that he had seen a vision in the Temple. Unable to say a word, he made signs to them with his hands.
23When his period of service in the Temple was over, Zechariah went back home. 24Some time later his wife Elizabeth became pregnant and did not leave the house for five months. 25“Now at last the Lord has helped me,” she said. “He has taken away my public disgrace!”
The Birth of Jesus is Announced
26In the sixth month of Elizabeth's pregnancy God sent the angel Gabriel to a town in Galilee named Nazareth. 27He had a message for a young woman promised in marriage to a man named Joseph, who was a descendant of King David. Her name was Mary. 28The angel came to her and said, “Peace be with you! The Lord is with you and has greatly blessed you!”
29Mary was deeply troubled by the angel's message, and she wondered what his words meant. 30The angel said to her, “Don't be afraid, Mary; God has been gracious to you. 31You will become pregnant and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. 32He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High God. The Lord God will make him a king, as his ancestor David was, 33and he will be the king of the descendants of Jacob for ever; his kingdom will never end!”
34Mary said to the angel, “I am a virgin. How, then, can this be?”
35The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and God's power will rest upon you. For this reason the holy child will be called the Son of God. 36Remember your relative Elizabeth. It is said that she cannot have children, but she herself is now six months pregnant, even though she is very old. 37For there is nothing that God cannot do.”
38“I am the Lord's servant,” said Mary; “may it happen to me as you have said.” And the angel left her.
Mary Visits Elizabeth
39Soon afterwards Mary got ready and hurried off to a town in the hill country of Judea. 40She went into Zechariah's house and greeted Elizabeth. 41When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby moved within her. Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit 42and said in a loud voice, “You are the most blessed of all women, and blessed is the child you will bear! 43Why should this great thing happen to me, that my Lord's mother comes to visit me? 44For as soon as I heard your greeting, the baby within me jumped with gladness. 45How happy you are to believe that the Lord's message to you will come true!”
Mary's Song of Praise
“My heart praises the Lord;
47my soul is glad because of God my Saviour,
48for he has remembered me, his lowly servant!
From now on all people will call me happy,
49because of the great things the Mighty God has done for me.
His name is holy;
50from one generation to another
he shows mercy to those who honour him.
51He has stretched out his mighty arm
and scattered the proud with all their plans.
52He has brought down mighty kings from their thrones,
and lifted up the lowly.
53He has filled the hungry with good things,
and sent the rich away with empty hands.
54He has kept the promise he made to our ancestors,
and has come to the help of his servant Israel.
55He has remembered to show mercy to Abraham
and to all his descendants for ever!”
56Mary stayed about three months with Elizabeth and then went back home.
The Birth of John the Baptist
57The time came for Elizabeth to have her baby, and she gave birth to a son. 58Her neighbours and relatives heard how wonderfully good the Lord had been to her, and they all rejoiced with her.
59When the baby was a week old, they came to circumcise him, and they were going to name him Zechariah, after his father. 60But his mother said, “No! His name is to be John.”
61They said to her, “But you have no relatives with that name!” 62Then they made signs to his father, asking him what name he would like the boy to have.
63Zechariah asked for a writing tablet and wrote, “His name is John.” How surprised they all were! 64At that moment Zechariah was able to speak again, and he started praising God. 65The neighbours were all filled with fear, and the news about these things spread through all the hill country of Judea. 66Everyone who heard of it thought about it and asked, “What is this child going to be?” For it was plain that the Lord's power was upon him.
67John's father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit, and he spoke God's message:
68“Let us praise the Lord, the God of Israel!
He has come to the help of his people and has set them free.
69He has provided for us a mighty Saviour,
a descendant of his servant David.
70He promised through his holy prophets long ago
71that he would save us from our enemies,
from the power of all those who hate us.
72He said he would show mercy to our ancestors
and remember his sacred covenant.
73-74With a solemn oath to our ancestor Abraham
he promised to rescue us from our enemies
and allow us to serve him without fear,
75so that we might be holy and righteous before him
all the days of our life.
76“You, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High God.
You will go ahead of the Lord
to prepare his road for him,
77to tell his people that they will be saved
by having their sins forgiven.
78Our God is merciful and tender.
He will cause the bright dawn of salvation to rise on us
79and to shine from heaven on all those who live in the dark shadow of death,
to guide our steps into the path of peace.”
80The child grew and developed in body and spirit. He lived in the desert until the day when he appeared publicly to the people of Israel.
1At that time the Emperor Augustus ordered a census to be taken throughout the Roman Empire. 2When this first census took place, Quirinius was the governor of Syria. 3Everyone, then, went to register himself, each to his own town.
4Joseph went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to the town of Bethlehem in Judea, the birthplace of King David. Joseph went there because he was a descendant of David. 5He went to register with Mary, who was promised in marriage to him. She was pregnant, 6and while they were in Bethlehem, the time came for her to have her baby. 7She gave birth to her first son, wrapped him in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger — there was no room for them to stay in the inn.
The Shepherds and the Angels
8There were some shepherds in that part of the country who were spending the night in the fields, taking care of their flocks. 9An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone over them. They were terribly afraid, 10but the angel said to them, “Don't be afraid! I am here with good news for you, which will bring great joy to all the people. 11This very day in David's town your Saviour was born — Christ the Lord! 12And this is what will prove it to you: you will find a baby wrapped in strips of cloth and lying in a manger.”
13Suddenly a great army of heaven's angels appeared with the angel, singing praises to God:
14“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and peace on earth to those with whom he is pleased!”
15When the angels went away from them back into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us.”
16So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph and saw the baby lying in the manger. 17When the shepherds saw him, they told them what the angel had said about the child. 18All who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said. 19Mary remembered all these things and thought deeply about them. 20The shepherds went back, singing praises to God for all they had heard and seen; it had been just as the angel had told them.
Jesus is Named
21A week later, when the time came for the baby to be circumcised, he was named Jesus, the name which the angel had given him before he had been conceived.
Jesus is Presented in the Temple
22The time came for Joseph and Mary to perform the ceremony of purification, as the Law of Moses commanded. So they took the child to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord, 23as it is written in the law of the Lord: “Every firstborn male is to be dedicated to the Lord.” 24They also went to offer a sacrifice of a pair of doves or two young pigeons, as required by the law of the Lord.
25At that time there was a man named Simeon living in Jerusalem. He was a good, God-fearing man and was waiting for Israel to be saved. The Holy Spirit was with him 26and had assured him that he would not die before he had seen the Lord's promised Messiah. 27Led by the Spirit, Simeon went into the Temple. When the parents brought the child Jesus into the Temple to do for him what the Law required, 28Simeon took the child in his arms and gave thanks to God:
29“Now, Lord, you have kept your promise,
and you may let your servant go in peace.
30With my own eyes I have seen your salvation,
31which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples:
32A light to reveal your will to the Gentiles
and bring glory to your people Israel.”
33The child's father and mother were amazed at the things Simeon said about him. 34Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother, “This child is chosen by God for the destruction and the salvation of many in Israel. He will be a sign from God which many people will speak against 35and so reveal their secret thoughts. And sorrow, like a sharp sword, will break your own heart.”
36-37There was a very old prophet, a widow named Anna, daughter of Phanuel of the tribe of Asher. She had been married for only seven years and was now 84 years old. She never left the Temple; day and night she worshipped God, fasting and praying. 38That very same hour she arrived and gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were waiting for God to set Jerusalem free.
The Return to Nazareth
39When Joseph and Mary had finished doing all that was required by the law of the Lord, they returned to their home town of Nazareth in Galilee. 40The child grew and became strong; he was full of wisdom, and God's blessings were upon him.
The Boy Jesus in the Temple
41Every year the parents of Jesus went to Jerusalem for the Passover Festival. 42When Jesus was twelve years old, they went to the festival as usual. 43When the festival was over, they started back home, but the boy Jesus stayed in Jerusalem. His parents did not know this; 44they thought that he was with the group, so they travelled a whole day and then started looking for him among their relatives and friends. 45They did not find him, so they went back to Jerusalem looking for him. 46On the third day they found him in the Temple, sitting with the Jewish teachers, listening to them and asking questions. 47All who heard him were amazed at his intelligent answers. 48His parents were astonished when they saw him, and his mother said to him, “My son, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been terribly worried trying to find you.”
49He answered them, “Why did you have to look for me? Didn't you know that I had to be in my Father's house?”50But they did not understand his answer.
51So Jesus went back with them to Nazareth, where he was obedient to them. His mother treasured all these things in her heart. 52Jesus grew both in body and in wisdom, gaining favour with God and people.
1It was the fifteenth year of the rule of the Emperor Tiberius; Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, Herod was ruler of Galilee, and his brother Philip was ruler of the territory of Iturea and Trachonitis; Lysanias was ruler of Abilene, 2and Annas and Caiaphas were high priests. At that time the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the desert. 3So John went throughout the whole territory of the River Jordan, preaching, “Turn away from your sins and be baptized, and God will forgive your sins.”
4As it is written in the book of the prophet Isaiah:
“Someone is shouting in the desert:
‘Get the road ready for the Lord;
make a straight path for him to travel!
5Every valley must be filled up,
every hill and mountain levelled off.
The winding roads must be made straight,
and the rough paths made smooth.
6The whole human race will see God's salvation!’ ”
7Crowds of people came out to John to be baptized by him. “You snakes!” he said to them. “Who told you that you could escape from the punishment God is about to send? 8Do those things that will show that you have turned from your sins. And don't start saying among yourselves that Abraham is your ancestor. I tell you that God can take these stones and make descendants for Abraham! 9The axe is ready to cut down the trees at the roots; every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown in the fire.”
10The people asked him, “What are we to do, then?”
11He answered, “Whoever has two shirts must give one to the man who has none, and whoever has food must share it.”
12Some tax collectors came to be baptized, and they asked him, “Teacher, what are we to do?”
13“Don't collect more than is legal,” he told them.
14Some soldiers also asked him, “What about us? What are we to do?”
He said to them, “Don't take money from anyone by force or accuse anyone falsely. Be content with your pay.”
15People's hopes began to rise, and they began to wonder whether John perhaps might be the Messiah. 16So John said to all of them, “I baptize you with water, but someone is coming who is much greater than I am. I am not good enough even to untie his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 17He has his winnowing shovel with him, to thresh out all the grain and gather the wheat into his barn; but he will burn the chaff in a fire that never goes out.”
18In many different ways John preached the Good News to the people and urged them to change their ways. 19But John reprimanded Herod, the governor, because he had married Herodias, his brother's wife, and had done many other evil things. 20Then Herod did an even worse thing by putting John in prison.
21After all the people had been baptized, Jesus also was baptized. While he was praying, heaven was opened, 22and the Holy Spirit came down upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my own dear Son. I am pleased with you.”
23When Jesus began his work, he was about thirty years old. He was the son, so people thought, of Joseph, who was the son of Heli, 24the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, the son of Melchi, the son of Jannai, the son of Joseph, 25the son of Mattathias, the son of Amos, the son of Nahum, the son of Esli, the son of Naggai, 26the son of Maath, the son of Mattathias, the son of Semein, the son of Josech, the son of Joda, 27the son of Joanan, the son of Rhesa, the son of Zerubbabel, the son of Shealtiel, the son of Neri, 28the son of Melchi, the son of Addi, the son of Cosam, the son of Elmadam, the son of Er, 29the son of Joshua, the son of Eliezer, the son of Jorim, the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, 30the son of Simeon, the son of Judah, the son of Joseph, the son of Jonam, the son of Eliakim, 31the son of Melea, the son of Menna, the son of Mattatha, the son of Nathan, the son of David, 32the son of Jesse, the son of Obed, the son of Boaz, the son of Salmon, the son of Nahshon, 33the son of Amminadab, the son of Admin, the son of Arni, the son of Hezron, the son of Perez, the son of Judah, 34the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, the son of Terah, the son of Nahor, 35the son of Serug, the son of Reu, the son of Peleg, the son of Eber, the son of Shelah, 36the son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, 37the son of Methuselah, the son of Enoch, the son of Jared, the son of Mahalaleel, the son of Kenan, 38the son of Enosh, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.
1Jesus returned from the Jordan full of the Holy Spirit and was led by the Spirit into the desert, 2where he was tempted by the Devil for forty days. In all that time he ate nothing, so that he was hungry when it was over.
3The Devil said to him, “If you are God's Son, order this stone to turn into bread.”
4But Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Human beings cannot live on bread alone.’ ”
5Then the Devil took him up and showed him in a second all the kingdoms of the world. 6“I will give you all this power and all this wealth,” the Devil told him. “It has all been handed over to me, and I can give it to anyone I choose. 7All this will be yours, then, if you worship me.”
8Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve only him!’ ”
9Then the Devil took him to Jerusalem and set him on the highest point of the Temple, and said to him, “If you are God's Son, throw yourself down from here. 10For the scripture says, ‘God will order his angels to take good care of you.’ 11It also says, ‘They will hold you up with their hands so that not even your feet will be hurt on the stones.’ ”
12But Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ”
13When the Devil finished tempting Jesus in every way, he left him for a while.
16Then Jesus went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath he went as usual to the synagogue. He stood up to read the Scriptures 17and was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it is written:
18“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has chosen me to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives
and recovery of sight to the blind;
to set free the oppressed
19and announce that the time has come
when the Lord will save his people.”
20Jesus rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. All the people in the synagogue had their eyes fixed on him, 21as he said to them, “This passage of scripture has come true today, as you heard it being read.”
22They were all well impressed with him and marvelled at the eloquent words that he spoke. They said, “Isn't he the son of Joseph?”
23He said to them, “I am sure that you will quote this proverb to me, ‘Doctor, heal yourself.’ You will also tell me to do here in my home town the same things you heard were done in Capernaum.24I tell you this,” Jesus added, “prophets are never welcomed in their home town.
25“Listen to me: it is true that there were many widows in Israel during the time of Elijah, when there was no rain for 3.5 years and a severe famine spread throughout the whole land.26Yet Elijah was not sent to anyone in Israel, but only to a widow living in Zarephath in the territory of Sidon.27And there were many people suffering from a dreaded skin disease who lived in Israel during the time of the prophet Elisha; yet not one of them was healed, but only Naaman the Syrian.”
28When the people in the synagogue heard this, they were filled with anger. 29They rose up, dragged Jesus out of the town, and took him to the top of the hill on which their town was built. They meant to throw him over the cliff, 30but he walked through the middle of the crowd and went his way.
31Then Jesus went to Capernaum, a town in Galilee, where he taught the people on the Sabbath. 32They were all amazed at the way he taught, because he spoke with authority. 33In the synagogue was a man who had the spirit of an evil demon in him; he screamed out in a loud voice, 34“Ah! What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Are you here to destroy us? I know who you are: you are God's holy messenger!”
35Jesus ordered the spirit, “Be quiet and come out of the man!” The demon threw the man down in front of them and went out of him without doing him any harm.
36The people were all amazed and said to one another, “What kind of words are these? With authority and power this man gives orders to the evil spirits, and they come out!” 37And the report about Jesus spread everywhere in that region.
38Jesus left the synagogue and went to Simon's house. Simon's mother-in-law was sick with a high fever, and they spoke to Jesus about her. 39He went and stood at her bedside and ordered the fever to leave her. The fever left her, and she got up at once and began to wait on them.
40After sunset all who had friends who were sick with various diseases brought them to Jesus; he placed his hands on every one of them and healed them all. 41Demons also went out from many people, screaming, “You are the Son of God!”
Jesus gave the demons an order and would not let them speak, because they knew that he was the Messiah.
42At daybreak Jesus left the town and went off to a lonely place. The people started looking for him, and when they found him, they tried to keep him from leaving. 43But he said to them, “I must preach the Good News about the Kingdom of God in other towns also, because that is what God sent me to do.”
44So he preached in the synagogues throughout the country.
1One day Jesus was standing on the shore of Lake Gennesaret while the people pushed their way up to him to listen to the word of God. 2He saw two boats pulled up on the beach; the fishermen had left them and were washing the nets. 3Jesus got into one of the boats — it belonged to Simon — and asked him to push off a little from the shore. Jesus sat in the boat and taught the crowd.
4When he finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Push the boat out further to the deep water, and you and your partners let down your nets for a catch.”
5“Master,” Simon answered, “we worked hard all night long and caught nothing. But if you say so, I will let down the nets.” 6They let them down and caught such a large number of fish that the nets were about to break. 7So they motioned to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. They came and filled both boats so full of fish that the boats were about to sink. 8When Simon Peter saw what had happened, he fell on his knees before Jesus and said, “Go away from me, Lord! I am a sinful man!”
9He and the others with him were all amazed at the large number of fish they had caught. 10The same was true of Simon's partners, James and John, the sons of Zebedee. Jesus said to Simon, “Don't be afraid; from now on you will be catching people.”
11They pulled the boats up on the beach, left everything, and followed Jesus.
12Once Jesus was in a town where there was a man who was suffering from a dreaded skin disease. When he saw Jesus, he threw himself down and begged him, “Sir, if you want to, you can make me clean!”
13Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him. “I do want to,” he answered. “Be clean!” At once the disease left the man. 14Jesus ordered him, “Don't tell anyone, but go straight to the priest and let him examine you; then to prove to everyone that you are cured, offer the sacrifice as Moses ordered.”
15But the news about Jesus spread all the more widely, and crowds of people came to hear him and be healed from their diseases. 16But he would go away to lonely places, where he prayed.
17One day when Jesus was teaching, some Pharisees and teachers of the Law were sitting there who had come from every town in Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem. The power of the Lord was present for Jesus to heal the sick. 18Some men came carrying a paralysed man on a bed, and they tried to take him into the house and put him in front of Jesus. 19Because of the crowd, however, they could find no way to take him in. So they carried him up on the roof, made an opening in the tiles, and let him down on his bed into the middle of the group in front of Jesus. 20When Jesus saw how much faith they had, he said to the man, “Your sins are forgiven, my friend.”
21The teachers of the Law and the Pharisees began to say to themselves, “Who is this man who speaks such blasphemy! God is the only one who can forgive sins!”
22Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, “Why do you think such things?23Is it easier to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’?24I will prove to you, then, that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralysed man, “I tell you, get up, pick up your bed, and go home!”
25At once the man got up in front of them all, took the bed he had been lying on, and went home, praising God. 26They were all completely amazed! Full of fear, they praised God, saying, “What marvellous things we have seen today!”
27After this, Jesus went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting in his office. Jesus said to him, “Follow me.”28Levi got up, left everything, and followed him.
29Then Levi had a big feast in his house for Jesus, and among the guests was a large number of tax collectors and other people. 30Some Pharisees and some teachers of the Law who belonged to their group complained to Jesus' disciples. “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and other outcasts?” they asked.
31Jesus answered them, “People who are well do not need a doctor, but only those who are sick.32I have not come to call respectable people to repent, but outcasts.”
33Some people said to Jesus, “The disciples of John fast frequently and offer prayers, and the disciples of the Pharisees do the same; but your disciples eat and drink.”
34Jesus answered, “Do you think you can make the guests at a wedding party go without food as long as the bridegroom is with them? Of course not!35But the day will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast.”
36Jesus also told them this parable: “No one tears a piece off a new coat to patch up an old coat. If he does, he will have torn the new coat, and the piece of new cloth will not match the old.37Nor does anyone pour new wine into used wineskins, because the new wine will burst the skins, the wine will pour out, and the skins will be ruined.38Instead, new wine must be poured into fresh wineskins!39And no one wants new wine after drinking old wine. ‘The old is better,’ he says.”
1Jesus was walking through some cornfields on the Sabbath. His disciples began to pick the ears of corn, rub them in their hands, and eat the grain. 2Some Pharisees asked, “Why are you doing what our Law says you cannot do on the Sabbath?”
3Jesus answered them, “Haven't you read what David did when he and his men were hungry?4He went into the house of God, took the bread offered to God, ate it, and gave it also to his men. Yet it is against our Law for anyone except the priests to eat that bread.”
5And Jesus concluded, “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.”
6On another Sabbath Jesus went into a synagogue and taught. A man was there whose right hand was paralysed. 7Some teachers of the Law and some Pharisees wanted a reason to accuse Jesus of doing wrong, so they watched him closely to see if he would heal on the Sabbath. 8But Jesus knew their thoughts and said to the man, “Stand up and come here to the front.” The man got up and stood there. 9Then Jesus said to them, “I ask you: what does our Law allow us to do on the Sabbath? To help or to harm? To save someone's life or destroy it?”10He looked around at them all; then he said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He did so, and his hand became well again.
11They were filled with rage and began to discuss among themselves what they could do to Jesus.
12At that time Jesus went up a hill to pray and spent the whole night there praying to God. 13When day came, he called his disciples to him and chose twelve of them, whom he named apostles: 14Simon (whom he named Peter) and his brother Andrew; James and John, Philip and Bartholomew, 15Matthew and Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, and Simon (who was called the Patriot), 16Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became the traitor.
17When Jesus had come down from the hill with the apostles, he stood on a level place with a large number of his disciples. A large crowd of people was there from all over Judea and from Jerusalem and from the coastal cities of Tyre and Sidon; 18they had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases. Those who were troubled by evil spirits also came and were healed. 19All the people tried to touch him, for power was going out from him and healing them all.
22“Happy are you when people hate you, reject you, insult you, and say that you are evil, all because of the Son of Man!23Be glad when that happens, and dance for joy, because a great reward is kept for you in heaven. For their ancestors did the very same things to the prophets.
24“But how terrible for you who are rich now;
you have had your easy life!
25How terrible for you who are full now;
you will go hungry!
How terrible for you who laugh now;
you will mourn and weep!
26“How terrible when all people speak well of you; their ancestors said the very same things about the false prophets.
27“But I tell you who hear me: love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,28bless those who curse you, and pray for those who ill-treat you.29If anyone hits you on one cheek, let him hit the other one too; if someone takes your coat, let him have your shirt as well.30Give to everyone who asks you for something, and when someone takes what is yours, do not ask for it back.31Do for others just what you want them to do for you.
32“If you love only the people who love you, why should you receive a blessing? Even sinners love those who love them!33And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you receive a blessing? Even sinners do that!34And if you lend only to those from whom you hope to get it back, why should you receive a blessing? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount!35No! Love your enemies and do good to them; lend and expect nothing back. You will then have a great reward, and you will be children of the Most High God. For he is good to the ungrateful and the wicked.36Be merciful just as your Father is merciful.
37“Do not judge others, and God will not judge you; do not condemn others, and God will not condemn you; forgive others, and God will forgive you.38Give to others, and God will give to you. Indeed, you will receive a full measure, a generous helping, poured into your hands — all that you can hold. The measure you use for others is the one that God will use for you.”
39And Jesus told them this parable: “One blind man cannot lead another one; if he does, both will fall into a ditch.40No pupil is greater than his teacher; but every pupil, when he has completed his training, will be like his teacher.
41“Why do you look at the speck in your brother's eye, but pay no attention to the log in your own eye?42How can you say to your brother, ‘Please, brother, let me take that speck out of your eye,’ yet cannot even see the log in your own eye? You hypocrite! First take the log out of your own eye, and then you will be able to see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye.
43“A healthy tree does not bear bad fruit, nor does a poor tree bear good fruit.44Every tree is known by the fruit it bears; you do not pick figs from thorn bushes or gather grapes from bramble bushes.45A good person brings good out of the treasure of good things in his heart; a bad person brings bad out of his treasure of bad things. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.
46“Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and yet don't do what I tell you?47Anyone who comes to me and listens to my words and obeys them — I will show you what he is like.48He is like a man who, in building his house, dug deep and laid the foundation on rock. The river overflowed and hit that house but could not shake it, because it was well built.49But anyone who hears my words and does not obey them is like a man who built his house without laying a foundation; when the flood hit that house it fell at once — and what a terrible crash that was!”