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The Bible in Living English
5 And when he saw the crowds he went up on the mountainside; and he sat down, and his disciples came to him, 2 and he opened his mouth and taught them, saying 3 “Happy are the poor at heart, because the Reign of Heaven is theirs. 4 Happy are mourners, because they shall be comforted. 5 Happy are the meek, because they shall inherit the earth. 6 Happy are the hungry and thirsty for righteousness, because they shall have their meal. 7 Happy are the pitiful, because they shall be pitied. 8 Happy are the clean in mind, because they shall see God. 9 Happy are peacemakers, because they shall be called sons of God. 10 Happy are the persecuted who have been persecuted on account of righteousness, because the Reign of Heaven is theirs. 11 Happy are you when they twit you and persecute you and say everything vile about you falsely on my account; 12 be glad and exult, because your reward is great in heaven, for thus they persecuted the prophets who came before you. 13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if salt loses its strength, with what shall it be salted? it will no longer do for anything but to be thrown out and trodden underfoot by men. 14 You are the light of the world; a city located on a mountaintop cannot be hidden, 15 nor do they light a lamp and put it under the peck measure, but on the stand—and it shines for everybody in the house. 16 Let your light shine thus before men, so that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. 17 “Do not suppose that I came to tear down the law or the prophets; I did not come to tear down but to fill up. 18 For I tell you verily, till the heavens and the earth pass away, not the dot of an i nor the cross of a t in the law shall pass away, till everything is done. 19 So whoever breaks one of the pettiest of those commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called petty in the Reign of Heaven; but whoever does them and teaches them shall be called great in the Reign of Heaven. 20 For I tell you that unless your righteousness outdoes the scribes and Pharisees you shall not get into the Reign of Heaven. 21 “You have heard that it was said to the ancients ‘You shall not commit murder; and whoever commits murder shall be liable to judgment.’ 22 But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother shall be liable to judgment; and whoever says ‘Raka’ to his brother shall be liable to the Sanhedrin Court; and whoever says ‘You fool’ shall be liable to the fire of hell. 23 So, if you are offering your gift on the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there before the altar and go and make up with your brother first; then come and offer your gift. 25* Be quick to make friends with your antagonist while you are on the road to court with him, for fear your antagonist should hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the officer, and you be thrown into prison; 26 I tell you verily, you shall not get out from there till you pay the last copper. 27 “You have heard that it was said ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ 28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman to desire her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 And if your right eye is tripping you up, take it out and throw it from you; for it is well for you that one of your organs should perish and not your whole body be thrown into hell. 30 And if your right hand is tripping you up, cut it away and throw it from you; for it is well for you that one of your organs should perish and not your whole body go to hell. 31 “And it was said ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’ 32* But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except on grounds of unchastity, causes her to commit adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery. 33 “Again, you have heard that it was said to the ancients ‘You shall not perjure yourself, but discharge your oaths to the Lord.’ 34 But I tell you not to swear at all; neither by heaven, because it is God’s throne, 35 nor by the earth, because it is the footstool of his feet, nor by Jerusalem, because it is the city of the great King. 36 And do not swear by your head either, because you cannot make one hair white or black. 37 But let your language be yes, yes, no, no; anything in excess of this is so much of bad. 38 “You have heard that it was said ‘an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I tell you not to oppose the bad; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn him the other too, 40 and when a man wants to sue you and get your shirt let him have your cloak too, 41 and go two miles with whoever requisitions you for one. 42 Give to him who asks you, and do not turn your back on him who wants to borrow from you. 43 “You have heard that it was said ‘you shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for your persecutors, 45 so as to act as sons of your Father in heaven, because he makes his sun rise on bad and good, and sends rain on honest men and rascals. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? do not even customhouse officers do the same? 47 and if you salute only your brothers, what are you doing that is special? do not even the heathen do the same? 48 “So you are to be thorough as your heavenly Father is thorough.