12 1 The disciples pluck the ears of corn. 6 Mercy, sacrifice. 10 The withered hand is healed. 12 We must do good on the Sabbath. 22 The possessed is holpen. 25 A kingdom divided. 31 Sin, blasphemy. 33 The good or evil tree. 34 Vipers. 38 The Ninevites. 42 The Queen of Sheba. 48 The true mother and brethren of Christ.

At (A)[a]that time Jesus went on a Sabbath day through the corn, and his disciples were an hungered, and began to pluck the ears of corn and to eat.

And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do (B)that which is not lawful to do upon the Sabbath.

But he said unto them, (C)Have ye not read what David did when he was an hungered, and they that were with him?

How he went into the house of God, and did eat the [b]showbread, which was not lawful for him to eat, neither for them which were with him, but only for the (D)Priests?

Or have ye not read in the Law, how that on the Sabbath days the Priests in the Temple (E)[c]break the Sabbath, and are blameless?

But I say unto you, that here is one greater than the Temple.

Wherefore if ye knew what this is, (F)I will have mercy and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the innocents.

For the son of man is Lord, even of the Sabbath.

(G)[d]And he departed thence, and went into their Synagogue:

10 And behold, there was a man which had his hand dried up. And they asked him, saying, Is it lawful to heal upon a Sabbath day? that they might accuse him.

11 And he said unto them, What man shall there be among you, that hath a sheep, and if it fall on the Sabbath day into a pit, doth not take it and lift it out?

12 How much more then is a man better than a sheep? therefore, it is lawful to do well on a Sabbath day.

13 Then said he to the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it forth, and it was made whole as the other.

14 [e]Then the Pharisees went out, and consulted against him, how they might destroy him.

15 But when Jesus knew it, he departed thence, and great multitudes followed him, and he healed them all,

16 And charged them in threatening wise, that they should not make him known,

17 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the Prophet, saying,

18 (H)Behold my servant whom I have chosen, my beloved in whom my soul delighteth: I will put my Spirit on him, and he shall show [f]judgment to the Gentiles.

19 He shall not strive, nor cry, neither shall any man hear his voice in the streets.

20 A bruised reed shall he not break, and smoking flax shall he not quench, till he [g]bring forth judgment unto victory.

21 And in his Name shall the Gentiles trust.

22 (I)[h]Then was brought to him one possessed with a devil, both blind and dumb, and he healed him, so that he which was blind and dumb, both spake and saw,

23 And all the people were amazed, and said, Is not this that son of David?

24 But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, (J)This man casteth the devils no otherwise out but through Beelzebub the prince of devils.

25 [i]But Jesus knew their thoughts, and said to them, Every kingdom divided against itself, is brought to naught, and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand.

26 So if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself: how shall then his kingdom endure?

27 Also if I through Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your children cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges.

28 But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then is the kingdom of God come unto you.

29 Else how can a man enter into a strong man’s house and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man, and then spoil his house?

30 He that is not with me, is against me: and he that gathereth not with me, scattereth.

31 (K)Wherefore I say unto you, Every sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.

32 And whosoever shall speak a word against the son of man, it shall be forgiven him: [j]but whosoever shall speak against the holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, nor in the world to come.

33 Either make the tree good, and his fruit good: or else make the tree evil, and his fruit evil: for the tree is known by the fruit.

34 [k]O generations of vipers, how can you speak good things, when ye are evil? For of the (L)abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.

35 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of an evil treasure, bringeth forth evil things.

36 But I say unto you, that of every [l]idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof at the day of judgment.

37 For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

38 (M)[m]Then answered certain of the Scribes and of the Pharisees, saying, Master, we would see a sign of thee.

39 But he answered and said to them, An evil and [n]adulterous generation seeketh a sign, but no sign shall be given unto it, save that sign of the Prophet Jonah.

40 (N)For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly: so shall the son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

41 [o]The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and condemn it: for they (O)repented at the preaching of Jonah: and behold, a greater than Jonah is here.

42 (P)The Queen of the [p]South shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the [q]utmost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon: and behold, a greater than Solomon is here.

43 (Q)Now when the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh throughout dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none.

44 Then he saith, I will return into mine house from whence I came: and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept and garnished.

45 Then he goeth, and taketh unto him seven other spirits worse than himself, and they enter in, and dwell there: (R)and the end of that man is worse than the beginning. Even so shall it be with this wicked generation.

46 [r](S)While he yet spake to the multitude, behold, his mother, and his brethren stood without, desiring to speak with him.

47 Then one said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with thee.

48 But he answered, and said to him that told him, Who is my mother, and who are my brethren?

49 [s]And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples and said, Behold my mother, and my brethren.

50 For whosoever shall do my Father’s will which is in heaven, the same is my brother and sister and mother.


  1. Matthew 12:1 Of the true sanctifying of the Sabbath, and the abrogating of it.
  2. Matthew 12:4 The Hebrews call it bread of faces, because it stood before the Lord all the weeks upon the golden table appointed to that service, Lev. 24:6.
  3. Matthew 12:5 When the Priests do God’s service upon the Sabbath day, yet they break not the Law: much less doth the Lord of the Sabbath break the Sabbath.
  4. Matthew 12:9 The ceremonies of the Law are not against the love of our neighbor.
  5. Matthew 12:14 How far and in what respect we may give place to the unbridled rage of the wicked.
  6. Matthew 12:18 By judgment is meant a settled state because Christ was to publish true religion among the Gentiles, and to cast out superstition, which thing wheresoever it is done, the Lord is said to reign and judge there, that is to say, to govern and rule matters.
  7. Matthew 12:20 He shall pronounce sentence and judgment, maugre the world and Satan, and show himself conqueror over all his enemies.
  8. Matthew 12:22 A truth be it never so manifest, is subject to the slander of the wicked: yet notwithstanding it ought to be avouched stoutly.
  9. Matthew 12:25 The kingdom of Christ and the kingdom of the devil cannot consist together.
  10. Matthew 12:32 Of blasphemy against the holy Ghost.
  11. Matthew 12:34 Hypocrites at the length betray themselves even by their own mouth.
  12. Matthew 12:36 Vain and unprofitable trifles which the most part of men spend their lives in.
  13. Matthew 12:38 Against froward desires of miracles.
  14. Matthew 12:39 Bastard, which fell from Abraham’s faith, or forsook the true worship of God.
  15. Matthew 12:41 Christ teacheth by the sorrowful example of the Jews, that there are none more miserable than they which put out the light of the Gospel which was kindled in them.
  16. Matthew 12:42 He meaneth the Queen of Sheba: whose country is South in respect of the land of Israel, 1 Kings 10.
  17. Matthew 12:42 For Sheba is situated in the utmost coast of . . . Arabia at the mouth of the Arabian Sea.
  18. Matthew 12:46 Christ teacheth by his own example, how that all things ought to be set apart in respect of God’s glory.
  19. Matthew 12:49 None are more near unto us, than they that are of the household of faith.

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.”


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

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