Jesus Sends His Apostles on a Mission
(Mt. 10:5–15; Mk. 6:7–13)
1Jesus called his twelve apostles together. He gave them power to heal sicknesses and power to force demons out of people. 2He sent them to tell about God’s kingdom and to heal the sick. 3He said to them, “When you travel, don’t take a walking stick. Also, don’t carry a bag, food, or money. Take for your trip only the clothes you are wearing. 4When you go into a house, stay there until it is time to leave. 5If the people in the town will not welcome you, go outside the town and shake the dust off your feet as a warning to them.”
6So the apostles went out. They traveled through all the towns. They told the Good News and healed people everywhere.
Herod Is Confused About Jesus
(Mt. 14:1–12; Mk. 6:14–29)
7Herod the ruler heard about all these things that were happening. He was confused because some people said, “John the Baptizer has risen from death.” 8Others said, “Elijah has come to us.” And some others said, “One of the prophets from long ago has risen from death.” 9Herod said, “I cut off John’s head. So who is this man I hear these things about?” Herod continued trying to see Jesus.
Jesus Feeds More Than 5000
(Mt. 14:13–21; Mk. 6:30–44; Jn. 6:1–14)
10When the apostles came back, they told Jesus what they had done on their trip. Then he took them away to a town called Bethsaida. There, he and his apostles could be alone together. 11But the people learned where Jesus went and followed him. He welcomed them and talked with them about God’s kingdom. He healed the people who were sick.
12Late in the afternoon, the twelve apostles came to Jesus and said, “No one lives in this place. Send the people away. They need to find food and places to sleep in the farms and towns around here.”
13But Jesus said to the apostles, “You give them something to eat.”
They said, “We have only five loaves of bread and two fish. Do you want us to go buy food for all these people?” There are too many! 14(There were about 5000 men there.)
Jesus said to his followers, “Tell the people to sit in groups of about 50 people.”
15So the followers did this and everyone sat down. 16Then Jesus took the five loaves of bread and two fish. He looked up into the sky and thanked God for the food. Then he broke it into pieces, which he gave to the followers to give to the people. 17They all ate until they were full. And there was a lot of food left. Twelve baskets were filled with the pieces of food that were not eaten.
Peter Says Jesus Is the Messiah
(Mt. 16:13–19; Mk. 8:27–29)
18One time Jesus was praying alone. His followers came together there, and he asked them, “Who do the people say I am?”
19They answered, “Some people say you are John the Baptizer. Others say you are Elijah. And some people say you are one of the prophets from long ago that has come back to life.”
20Then Jesus said to his followers, “And who do you say I am?”
Peter answered, “You are the Messiah from God.”
21Jesus warned them not to tell anyone.
Jesus Says He Must Die
(Mt. 16:21–28; Mk. 8:31–9:1)
22Then Jesus said, “The Son of Man must suffer many things. He will be rejected by the older Jewish leaders, the leading priests, and teachers of the law. And he will be killed. But after three days he will be raised from death.”
23Jesus continued to say to all of them, “Any of you who want to be my follower must stop thinking about yourself and what you want. You must be willing to carry the cross that is given to you every day for following me. 24Any of you who try to save the life you have will lose it. But you who give up your life for me will save it. 25It is worth nothing for you to have the whole world if you yourself are destroyed or lost. 26Don’t be ashamed of me and my teaching. If that happens, I#9:26 I Literally, “the Son of Man” (Jesus). will be ashamed of you when I come with my divine greatness and that of the Father and the holy angels. 27Believe me when I say that some of you people standing here will see God’s kingdom before you die.”
Jesus Is Seen With Moses and Elijah
(Mt. 17:1–8; Mk. 9:2–8)
28About eight days after Jesus said these things, he took Peter, John, and James and went up on a mountain to pray. 29While Jesus was praying, his face began to change. His clothes became shining white. 30Then two men were there, talking with him. They were Moses and Elijah. 31They also looked bright and glorious. They were talking with Jesus about his death that would happen in Jerusalem. 32Peter and the others were asleep. But they woke up and saw the glory of Jesus. They also saw the two men who were standing with him. 33When Moses and Elijah were leaving, Peter said, “Master, it is good that we are here. We will put three tents here—one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” (He did not know what he was saying.)
34While Peter was saying these things, a cloud came all around them. Peter, John, and James were afraid when the cloud covered them. 35A voice came from the cloud and said, “This is my Son. He is the one I have chosen. Obey him.”
36When the voice stopped, only Jesus was there. Peter, John, and James said nothing. And for a long time after that, they told no one about what they had seen.
Jesus Frees a Boy From an Evil Spirit
(Mt. 17:14–18; Mk. 9:14–27)
37The next day, Jesus, Peter, John, and James came down from the mountain. A large group of people met Jesus. 38A man in the group shouted to him, “Teacher, please come and look at my son. He is the only child I have. 39An evil spirit comes into him, and then he shouts. He loses control of himself and foams at the mouth. The evil spirit continues to hurt him and almost never leaves him. 40I begged your followers to make the evil spirit leave my son, but they could not do it.”
41Jesus answered, “You people today have no faith. Your lives are all wrong. How long must I be with you and be patient with you?” Then Jesus said to the man, “Bring your son here.”
42While the boy was coming, the demon threw the boy to the ground. The boy lost control of himself. But Jesus gave a strong command to the evil spirit. Then the boy was healed, and Jesus gave him back to his father. 43All the people were amazed at the great power of God.
Jesus Talks About His Death
(Mt. 17:22–23; Mk. 9:30–32)
The people were still amazed about all the things Jesus did. He said to his followers, 44“Don’t forget what I will tell you now: The Son of Man will soon be handed over to the control of other men.” 45But the followers did not understand what he meant. The meaning was hidden from them so that they could not understand it. But they were afraid to ask Jesus about what he said.
Who Is the Greatest?
(Mt. 18:1–5; Mk. 9:33–37)
46Jesus’ followers began to have an argument about which one of them was the greatest. 47Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he took a little child and stood the child beside him. 48Then he said to the followers, “Whoever accepts a little child like this in my name is accepting me. And anyone who accepts me is also accepting the one who sent me. The one among you who is the most humble—this is the one who is great.”
Whoever Is Not Against You Is for You
49John answered, “Master, we saw someone using your name to force demons out of people. We told him to stop because he does not belong to our group.”
50Jesus said to him, “Don’t stop him. Whoever is not against you is for you.”
A Samaritan Town
51The time was coming near when Jesus would leave and go back to heaven. He decided to go to Jerusalem. 52He sent some men ahead of him. They went into a town in Samaria to make everything ready for him. 53But the people there would not welcome Jesus because he was going toward Jerusalem. 54James and John, the followers of Jesus, saw this. They said, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven and destroy those people?”#9:54 Some Greek copies add “as Elijah did?”
55But Jesus turned and criticized them for saying this.#9:55 Some Greek copies add “And he said, ‘You don’t know what kind of spirit you belong to. 56 The Son of Man did not come to destroy people’s lives but to save them.’” 56Then he and his followers went to another town.
57They were all traveling along the road. Someone said to Jesus, “I will follow you anywhere you go.”
58He answered, “The foxes have holes to live in. The birds have nests. But the Son of Man has no place where he can rest his head.”
59Jesus said to another man, “Follow me!”
But the man said, “Lord, let me go and bury my father first.”
60But Jesus said to him, “Let the people who are dead bury their own dead. You must go and tell about God’s kingdom.”
61Another man said, “I will follow you, Lord, but first let me go and say goodbye to my family.”
62Jesus said, “Anyone who begins to plow a field but looks back is not prepared for God’s kingdom.”