Jesus Sends Out the Apostles
1Jesus called the twelve apostles together and gave them power and authority over all demons and the ability to heal sicknesses. 2He sent the apostles out to tell about God’s kingdom and to heal the sick. 3He said to them, “Take nothing for your trip, neither a walking stick, bag, bread, money, or extra clothes. 4When you enter a house, stay there until it is time to leave. 5If people do not welcome you, shake the dust off of your feet as you leave the town, as a warning to them.”
6So the apostles went out and traveled through all the towns, preaching the Good News and healing people everywhere.
Herod Is Confused About Jesus
7Herod, the governor, heard about all the things that were happening and was confused, because some people said, “John the Baptist has risen from the dead.” 8Others said, “Elijah has come to us.” And still others said, “One of the prophets who lived long ago has risen from the dead.” 9Herod said, “I cut off John’s head, so who is this man I hear such things about?” And Herod kept trying to see Jesus.
More than Five Thousand Fed
10When the apostles returned, they told Jesus everything they had done. Then Jesus took them with him to a town called Bethsaida where they 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 and healed those who needed to be healed.
12Late in the afternoon, the twelve apostles came to Jesus and said, “Send the people away. They need to go to the towns and countryside around here and find places to sleep and something to eat, because no one lives in this place.”
13But Jesus said to them, “You give them something to eat.”
They said, “We have only five loaves of bread and two fish, unless we go buy food for all these people.” 14(There were about five thousand men there.)
Jesus said to his followers, “Tell the people to sit in groups of about fifty people.”
15So the followers did this, and all the people sat down. 16Then Jesus took the five loaves of bread and two fish, and looking up to heaven, he thanked God for the food. Then he divided the food and gave it to the followers to give to the people. 17They all ate and were satisfied, and what was left over was gathered up, filling twelve baskets.
Jesus Is the Christ
18One time when Jesus was praying alone, his followers were with him, and he asked them, “Who do the people say I am?”
19They answered, “Some say you are John the Baptist. Others say you are Elijah. And others say you are one of the prophets from long ago who has come back to life.”
20Then Jesus asked, “But who do you say I am?”
Peter answered, “You are the Christ from God.”
21Jesus warned them not to tell anyone, saying, 22“The Son of Man must suffer many things. He will be rejected by the Jewish elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of the law. He will be killed and after three days will be raised from the dead.”
23Jesus said to all of them, “If people want to follow me, they must give up the things they want. They must be willing to give up their lives daily to follow me. 24Those who want to save their lives will give up true life. But those who give up their lives for me will have true life. 25It is worthless to have the whole world if they themselves are destroyed or lost. 26If people are ashamed of me and my teaching, then the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his glory and with the glory of the Father and the holy angels. 27I tell you the truth, some people standing here will see the kingdom of God before they die.”
Jesus Talks with Moses and Elijah
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, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became shining white. 30Then two men, Moses and Elijah, were talking with Jesus. 31They appeared in heavenly glory, talking about his departure which he would soon bring about in Jerusalem. 32Peter and the others were very sleepy, but when they awoke fully, they saw the glory of Jesus and the two men standing with him. 33When Moses and Elijah were about to leave, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good that we are here. Let us make three tents—one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” (Peter did not know what he was talking about.)
34While he was saying these things, a cloud came and covered them, and they became afraid as the cloud covered them. 35A voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, whom I have chosen. Listen to him!”
36When the voice finished speaking, only Jesus was there. Peter, John, and James said nothing and told no one at that time what they had seen.
Jesus Heals a Sick Boy
37The next day, when they came down from the mountain, a large crowd met Jesus. 38A man in the crowd shouted to him, “Teacher, please come and look at my son, because he is my only child. 39An evil spirit seizes my son, and suddenly he screams. It causes him to lose control of himself and foam at the mouth. The evil spirit keeps on hurting him and almost never leaves him. 40I begged your followers to force the evil spirit out, but they could not do it.”
41Jesus answered, “You people have no faith, and your lives are all wrong. How long must I stay with you and put up with you? Bring your son here.”
42While the boy was coming, the demon threw him on the ground and made him lose control of himself. But Jesus gave a strong command to the evil spirit and healed the boy and gave him back to his father. 43All the people were amazed at the great power of God.
Jesus Talks About His Death
While everyone was wondering about all that Jesus did, he said to his followers, 44“Don’t forget what I tell you now: The Son of Man will be handed over to people.” 45But the followers did not understand what this meant; the meaning was hidden from them so they could not understand. But they were afraid to ask Jesus about it.
Who Is the Greatest?
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 Jesus said, “Whoever accepts this little child in my name accepts me. And whoever accepts me accepts the One who sent me, because whoever is least among you all is really the greatest.”
Anyone Not Against Us Is for Us
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.”
50But Jesus said to him, “Don’t stop him, because whoever is not against you is for you.”
A Town Rejects Jesus
51When the time was coming near for Jesus to depart, he was determined to go to Jerusalem. 52He sent some messengers ahead of him, who went into a town in Samaria to make everything ready for him. 53But the people there would not welcome him, because he was set on going to Jerusalem. 54When James and John, followers of Jesus, saw this, they said, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven and destroy those people?”
55But Jesus turned and scolded them. [And Jesus said, “You don’t know what kind of spirit you belong to. 56The Son of Man did not come to destroy the souls of people but to save them.”] Then they went to another town.
Following Jesus
57As they were going along the road, someone said to Jesus, “I will follow you any place you go.”
58Jesus said to them, “The foxes have holes to live in, and the birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to rest his head.”
59Jesus said to another man, “Follow me!”
But he said, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.”
60But Jesus said to him, “Let the people who are dead bury their own dead. You must go and tell about the kingdom of God.”
61Another man said, “I will follow you, Lord, but first let me go and say good-bye to my family.”
62Jesus said, “Anyone who begins to plow a field but keeps looking back is of no use in the kingdom of God.”
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The Holy Bible, New Century Version, Copyright © 2005 Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved.