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Jesus Is Lord of the Sabbath(A)

12 At that time Jesus was walking through some fields of grain on a Sabbath day. His ·followers [disciples] were hungry, so they began to pick the grain and eat it [Deut. 23:25]. When the Pharisees saw this, they said to Jesus, “Look! Your ·followers [disciples] are doing what is ·unlawful to do [forbidden] on the Sabbath day.” [C Gleaning was viewed as work, and therefore forbidden on the Sabbath; Ex. 34:21.]

Jesus answered, “Have you not read what David did when he and ·the people with him [his companions] were hungry? He went into God’s house, and he and ·those with him [his companions] ate the ·holy bread [consecrated bread; L bread of presentation], which was ·lawful [allowed] only for priests to eat [Ex. 25:30; Lev. 24:5–9]. And have you not read in the ·law of Moses [L Law] that on every Sabbath day the priests in the Temple ·break this law about [violate; desecrate; profane] the Sabbath day [C by working when they offer sacrifices]? But the priests are ·not wrong for doing that [L innocent; not guilty]. I tell you that there is ·something [or someone; C may refer to Jesus himself or to the arrival of the kingdom] here that is greater than the Temple. The Scripture says, ‘I want ·kindness more than I want animal sacrifices [L mercy and not sacrifice; Hos. 6:6].’ If you ·understood [had known] what these words mean, you would not have ·judged those who have done nothing wrong [condemned the innocent/guiltless].

“·So [For] the Son of Man is ·Lord [Master] of the Sabbath day.”

Jesus Heals a Man’s Hand(B)

Jesus left there and went into their synagogue, 10 ·where [L and look/T behold] there was a man with a ·crippled [paralyzed; deformed; shriveled] hand. They were looking for a reason to ·accuse [bring charges against] Jesus, so they asked him, “Is it ·right [lawful] to ·heal [cure] on the Sabbath day?”

11 Jesus answered, “If any of you has a sheep, and it falls into a ·ditch [pit; hole] on the Sabbath day, ·you will [would you not…?] ·help [L grab it and lift] it out of the ditch. 12 ·Surely a human being is more important [L How much better is a person] than a sheep. So it is ·lawful [permitted] to do ·good things [good] on the Sabbath day.”

13 Then Jesus said to the man, “·Hold [Stretch] out your hand.” The man ·held [stretched] out his hand, and it ·became well again [was restored], ·like [L as healthy as] the other hand. 14 But the Pharisees left and ·made plans [plotted; conspired] to ·kill [destroy] Jesus.

Jesus Is God’s Chosen Servant(C)

15 Jesus knew ·what the Pharisees were doing [L this], so he left that place. ·Many people [Large crowds] followed him, and he healed all who were sick. 16 But Jesus warned the people not to ·tell who he was [make him known]. 17 He did these things to ·bring about [fulfill] what Isaiah the prophet had said:

18 “·Here is [L Behold; Look!] my servant whom I have chosen.
    ·I love him [The one I love; My beloved], ·and I am pleased with him [L in whom my soul delights/is well pleased].
I will put my Spirit upon him,
    and he will ·tell of my [proclaim] justice to ·all people [the nations/Gentiles].
19 He will not ·argue [quarrel; fight] or ·cry out [shout];
    no one will hear his voice in the streets.
20 He will not break a ·crushed blade of grass [battered/bruised reed]
    or ·put out [extinguish] ·even a weak flame [a flickering candle; L a smoldering wick]
until he ·makes justice win the [leads justice to] victory.
21     In ·him [L his name] will the ·Gentiles [nations; non-Jewish people] ·find [put their] hope [Is. 42:1–4].”

Jesus’ Power Is from God(D)

22 Then some people brought to Jesus a man who was blind and ·could not talk [mute], because he ·had a demon [was demon-possessed/demonized]. Jesus healed the man so that he could talk and see. 23 All the people were amazed and said, “Perhaps this man is the Son of David [C a title for the Messiah, a descendant of King David; 2 Sam. 7:11–16]!”

24 When the Pharisees heard this, they said, “This man uses the power of Beelzebul [C another name for Satan], the ruler of demons, to ·force [drive; cast] demons out of people.”

25 Jesus knew what the Pharisees were thinking, so he said to them, “Every kingdom that is ·divided against [at war with] itself ·will be destroyed [is doomed/headed for ruin]. And any city or ·family [L house] that is ·divided against [at war with] itself will not ·continue [survive; stand]. 26 And if Satan ·forces out himself [L drives/casts out Satan], then Satan is ·divided against [at war with] himself, and ·his kingdom will not continue [L how will his kingdom stand?]. 27 You say that I use the power of Beelzebul [v. 24] to ·force [drive; cast] out demons. If that is true, then what power do your ·people [own exorcists; followers; L sons] use to ·force [drive; force] out demons? So they will be your judges. 28 But if I use the power of God’s Spirit to ·force [drive; cast] out demons, then the kingdom of God has ·come to you [arrived among you; or overtaken you; caught you unaware].

29 “·If anyone wants to [L Or how can anyone…?] enter a strong person’s house and ·steal [seize; plunder] his things, he must first ·tie up [bind] the strong person. Then he can ·steal [seize; plunder] the things from the house. [C Satan is the strong man and his possessions are the people Jesus is freeing from Satan’s power.]

The Sin Against the Holy Spirit(E)

30 “Whoever is not with me is against me. Whoever does not ·work [gather] with me ·is working against me [scatters; C probably a reference to gathering or scattering a flock; John 10:12]. 31 So I tell you, people can be forgiven for every sin and ·everything they say against God [blasphemy]. But whoever ·speaks [blasphemes] against the ·Holy Spirit [L Spirit] will not be forgiven. 32 Anyone who speaks against the Son of Man can be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, ·now or in the future [L neither in this age, nor the one to come].

People Know You by Your Words

33 “If you want good fruit, you must ·make the tree good [grow a good/healthy tree]. If ·your tree is not good [you grow a bad/unhealthy tree], it will have bad fruit. A tree is ·known [identified; recognized] by the kind of fruit it produces. 34 You ·snakes [T brood/offspring of vipers]! You are evil people, so how can you say anything good? [L For] The mouth speaks the things that ·are in [overflow from] the heart. 35 Good people ·have good things in their hearts, and so they say good things [L bring forth good things from the good treasure/storehouse]. But evil people ·have evil in their hearts, so they say evil things [L bring forth evil things from the evil treasure/storehouse]. 36 And I tell you that on the judgment day people will ·be responsible [give an accounting; answer] for every ·careless [idle; thoughtless; unhelpful] ·thing [word] they have said. 37 ·The words you have said will be used to judge you. Some of your words will prove you right, but some of your words will prove you guilty [L For by your words you will be acquitted/justified, and by your words you will be condemned].”

The People Ask for a Miracle(F)

38 Then some of the Pharisees and ·teachers of the law [scribes] answered Jesus, saying, “Teacher, we want to see ·you work a miracle as a sign [L a sign from you].”

39 Jesus answered, “Evil and sinful people [L An evil and adulterous/unfaithful generation] are the ones who ·want to see [seek after; ask for; demand] ·a miracle for a sign [L a sign]. But no sign will be given to them, except the sign of the prophet Jonah. 40 [L For just as] Jonah was in the stomach of the ·big fish [sea monster; sea creature] for three days and three nights [Jon. 1:17]. In the same way, the Son of Man will be in the ·grave [L heart of the earth] three days and three nights. 41 On the judgment day the ·people [or men] from Nineveh will stand up with ·you people who live now [this generation], and they will ·show that you are guilty [condemn you]. [L Because] When Jonah preached to them, they ·were sorry and changed their lives [repented]. And ·I tell you that [L look; T behold] ·someone [or something; C either Jesus or the Kingdom of God] greater than Jonah is here. 42 On the judgment day, the Queen of the South will ·stand [rise] up with ·you people who live today [this generation]. She will ·show that you are guilty [condemn you], because she came from ·far away [the ends of the earth] to listen to Solomon’s wise teaching [1 Kin. 10:1–13]. And ·I tell you that [L look; T behold] ·someone [or something] greater than Solomon is here.

People Today Are Full of Evil(G)

43 “When an ·evil [defiling; L unclean] spirit comes out of a person, it travels through ·dry [waterless; arid] places, looking for a place to rest, but it doesn’t find it. 44 So the spirit says, ‘I will go back to the house [C the person] I left.’ When the spirit comes back, it finds the house still empty, swept clean, and ·made neat [put in order; fixed up]. 45 Then the evil spirit goes out and brings seven other spirits even more ·evil [wicked] than it is, and they go in and live there. So ·the person has even more trouble than before [L the last state of that person is worse than the first]. ·It is the same way [L So it will be] with ·the evil people who live today [this evil generation].”

Jesus’ True Family(H)

46 While Jesus was talking to the ·people [crowds], [L look; T behold] his mother and ·brothers [or brothers and sisters; C the Greek word can mean “siblings”] stood outside, ·trying to find a way [seeking; asking] to talk to him. 47 Someone told Jesus, “[L Look; T Behold] Your mother and brothers [and sisters] are standing outside, ·and they want [seeking; asking] to talk to you.”[a]

48 He answered, “Who is my mother? Who are my brothers [and sisters]?” 49 Then he ·pointed to [or stretched out his hand toward] his ·followers [disciples] and said, “·Here are [L Look; T Behold] my mother and my brothers. 50 My true brother and sister and mother are those who do ·what my Father in heaven wants [the will of my Father in heaven].”

Footnotes

  1. Matthew 12:47 Someone … you.” Some Greek copies do not have verse 47.

Jesus Is Lord of the Sabbath(A)(B)

12 At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain(C) and eat them. When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, “Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath.”(D)

He answered, “Haven’t you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry?(E) He entered the house of God, and he and his companions ate the consecrated bread—which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests.(F) Or haven’t you read in the Law that the priests on Sabbath duty in the temple desecrate the Sabbath(G) and yet are innocent? I tell you that something greater than the temple is here.(H) If you had known what these words mean, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice,’[a](I) you would not have condemned the innocent. For the Son of Man(J) is Lord of the Sabbath.”

Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue, 10 and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to bring charges against Jesus,(K) they asked him, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?”(L)

11 He said to them, “If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out?(M) 12 How much more valuable is a person than a sheep!(N) Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.”

13 Then he said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other. 14 But the Pharisees went out and plotted how they might kill Jesus.(O)

God’s Chosen Servant

15 Aware of this, Jesus withdrew from that place. A large crowd followed him, and he healed all who were ill.(P) 16 He warned them not to tell others about him.(Q) 17 This was to fulfill(R) what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah:

18 “Here is my servant whom I have chosen,
    the one I love, in whom I delight;(S)
I will put my Spirit on him,(T)
    and he will proclaim justice to the nations.
19 He will not quarrel or cry out;
    no one will hear his voice in the streets.
20 A bruised reed he will not break,
    and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out,
till he has brought justice through to victory.
21     In his name the nations will put their hope.”[b](U)

Jesus and Beelzebul(V)

22 Then they brought him a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute, and Jesus healed him, so that he could both talk and see.(W) 23 All the people were astonished and said, “Could this be the Son of David?”(X)

24 But when the Pharisees heard this, they said, “It is only by Beelzebul,(Y) the prince of demons, that this fellow drives out demons.”(Z)

25 Jesus knew their thoughts(AA) and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand. 26 If Satan(AB) drives out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand? 27 And if I drive out demons by Beelzebul,(AC) by whom do your people(AD) drive them out? So then, they will be your judges. 28 But if it is by the Spirit of God that I drive out demons, then the kingdom of God(AE) has come upon you.

29 “Or again, how can anyone enter a strong man’s house and carry off his possessions unless he first ties up the strong man? Then he can plunder his house.

30 “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.(AF) 31 And so I tell you, every kind of sin and slander can be forgiven, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.(AG) 32 Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age(AH) or in the age to come.(AI)

33 “Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit.(AJ) 34 You brood of vipers,(AK) how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks(AL) what the heart is full of. 35 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. 36 But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. 37 For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”(AM)

The Sign of Jonah(AN)(AO)

38 Then some of the Pharisees and teachers of the law said to him, “Teacher, we want to see a sign(AP) from you.”(AQ)

39 He answered, “A wicked and adulterous generation asks for a sign! But none will be given it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.(AR) 40 For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish,(AS) so the Son of Man(AT) will be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.(AU) 41 The men of Nineveh(AV) will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah,(AW) and now something greater than Jonah is here. 42 The Queen of the South will rise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for she came(AX) from the ends of the earth to listen to Solomon’s wisdom, and now something greater than Solomon is here.

43 “When an impure spirit comes out of a person, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. 44 Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the house unoccupied, swept clean and put in order. 45 Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that person is worse than the first.(AY) That is how it will be with this wicked generation.”

Jesus’ Mother and Brothers(AZ)

46 While Jesus was still talking to the crowd, his mother(BA) and brothers(BB) stood outside, wanting to speak to him. 47 Someone told him, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you.”

48 He replied to him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” 49 Pointing to his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers. 50 For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven(BC) is my brother and sister and mother.”

Footnotes

  1. Matthew 12:7 Hosea 6:6
  2. Matthew 12:21 Isaiah 42:1-4

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