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The Bible in Living English
12 At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the sabbath. And his disciples grew hungry and began to pick ears and eat them; 2 and the Pharisees, seeing it, said to him “There, your disciples are doing what it is not lawful to do on a Sabbath.” 3 But he said to them “Have you not read what David did when he and those who were with him were hungry? 4 how he went into the house of God and they ate the showbread, which it was not allowable for him to eat nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests? 5 or have you not read in the law that on the sabbath the priests in the temple profane the sabbath and are guiltless? 6 but I tell you there is something greater than the temple here. 7 But if you knew what ‘I want pity, and not sacrifice’ is, you would not have condemned the guiltless; 8 for the Son of Man is master of the sabbath.” 9 And he passed from that place to their synagogue; 10 and lo, there was a man there with a shriveled hand, and they put the question to him “Is it lawful to cure on the sabbath?” that they might arraign him. 11* But he said to them “What man will there be of you that will have one sheep, and if that falls into a pit on the sabbath will not catch hold of it and get it on its feet? 12 How much more important, then, is a man than a sheep! So that it is lawful to do a good turn on the sabbath.” 13 Then he said to the man “Stretch out your hand”; and he stretched it out and it was restored, sound like the other. 14 But the Pharisees went out and laid a plot against him to make away with him; 15 but Jesus, finding it out, retired from that place. And many followed him, and he cured them all, 16 and told them peremptorily not to make him known, 17 that what was said through the prophet Isaiah in the words 18 “Here is my servant whom I like well, my dear one in whom my soul takes pleasure; I will put my Spirit upon him, and he shall announce judgment to the nations. 19 He will not wrangle, nor shout, nor will anyone hear his voice on the streets. 20 He will not break a crushed reed, and will not put out smoldering flax, till he brings judgment out to victory; 21 and in his name shall nations hope” should be fulfilled. 22 Then there was brought to him a blind and dumb demoniac; and he cured him, so that the dumb man spoke and saw. 23 And all the crowds were surprised and said “Can it be that this is the Son of David?” 24* But the Pharisees, hearing it, said “It is simply by Beelzebul the head of the demons that this man expels the demons.” 25 But he, knowing their thoughts, said to them “Any kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and any city or family divided against itself will not be kept up; 26 and if Satan is expelling Satan, he is divided against himself—so how shall his kingdom be kept up? 27 And if it is by Beelzebul that I expel the demons, by whom do your sons expel them? accordingly they shall be your judges. 28 But if I expel the demons by the Spirit of God, then the Reign of God has overtaken you. 29 Or how can one enter a strong man’s house and carry off his goods unless he first binds the strong man? and then he shall plunder his house. 30 He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters. 31 Accordingly I tell you, men will be forgiven every sin and blasphemy, but not the blasphemy of the Spirit. 32 And anyone who says a thing against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but one who says it against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven either in this or in the future age. 33 Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree foul and its fruit foul; for the tree is known by the fruit. 34 Spawn of vipers, how can you be bad and speak good? for what the mouth speaks comes out of what is overflowing in the heart. 35 A good man brings out good things from his good stock, and a bad man brings out bad things from his bad stock. 36 But I tell you, every idle word that men shall speak they shall account for at the day of judgment; 37 for you shall be acquitted on your own words and condemned on your own words.” 38 Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered him “Teacher, we want to see a token from you.” 39 But he answered them “A wicked and adulterous generation is in quest of a token, and will be given none but the token of the prophet Jonah. 40 For as Jonah was in the whale’s belly three days and three nights, so will the Son of Man be in the heart of the earth three days and three nights. 41 The men of Nineveh shall indict this generation and convict it, because they repented at Jonah’s proclamation and now here is more than Jonah. 42* The queen of the south shall indict this generation and convict it, because she came from the ends of the earth to listen to Solomon’s wisdom, and now here is more than Solomon. 43 But when an unclean spirit comes out of a man it goes through waterless tracts looking for a resting-place, and does not find one; 44 then it says ‘I will turn back to my home that I came from,’ and when it gets there it finds it unoccupied, swept and put in order; 45 then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits worse than itself, and they go in and live there, and that man’s last stage comes to be worse than his first. It will be the same with this wicked generation.” 46 While he was still speaking to the crowds, his mother and brothers made their appearance, standing outside and wanting to speak to him. 47 —— 48 But he replied to the one who told him of it “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” 49 and he stretched out his hand toward his disciples and said “Here are my mother and my brothers; 50 for whoever does the will of my Father in heaven, he is my brother and sister and mother.”