The Group With Jesus
1The next day, Jesus traveled through some cities and small towns. Jesus told the people a message from God, the Good News about God’s kingdom. The twelve apostles were with him. 2There were also some women with him. Jesus had healed these women of sicknesses and evil spirits. One of them was Mary, who was called Magdalene. Seven demons had come out of her. 3Also with these women were Joanna, the wife of Chuza (the manager of Herod’s property), Susanna, and many other women. These women used their own money to help Jesus and his apostles.
A Story About a Farmer Sowing Seed
(Mt. 13:1–17; Mk. 4:1–12)
4A large crowd came together. People came to Jesus from every town, and he told them this story:
5“A farmer went out to sow seed. While he was scattering the seed, some of it fell beside the road. People walked on the seed, and the birds ate it all. 6Other seed fell on rock. It began to grow but then died because it had no water. 7Some other seed fell among thorny weeds. This seed grew, but later the weeds stopped the plants from growing. 8The rest of the seed fell on good ground. This seed grew and made 100 times more grain.”
Jesus finished the story. Then he called out, “You people who hear me, listen!”
9Jesus’ followers asked him, “What does this story mean?”
10He said, “You have been chosen to know the secret truths about God’s kingdom. But I use stories to speak to other people. I do this so that
‘They will look,
but they will not see,
and they will listen,
but they will not understand.’ Isaiah 6:9
Jesus Explains the Story About Seed
(Mt. 13:18–23; Mk. 4:13–20)
11“This is what the story means: The seed is God’s teaching. 12Some people are like the seed that fell beside the path. They hear God’s teaching, but then the devil comes and causes them to stop thinking about it. This keeps them from believing it and being saved. 13Others are like the seed that fell on rock. That is like the people who hear God’s teaching and gladly accept it. But they don’t have deep roots. They believe for a while. But when trouble comes, they turn away from God.
14“What about the seed that fell among the thorny weeds? That is like the people who hear God’s teaching, but they let the worries, riches, and pleasures of this life stop them from growing. So they never produce a crop.#8:14 produce a crop Meaning to do the good things God wants his people to do. 15And what about the seed that fell on the good ground? That is like the people who hear God’s teaching with a good, honest heart. They obey it and patiently produce a good crop.
Use the Understanding You Have
16“No one lights a lamp and then covers it with a bowl or hides it under a bed. Instead, they put the lamp on a lampstand so that the people who come in will have enough light to see. 17Everything that is hidden will become clear. Every secret thing will be made known, and everyone will see it. 18So think carefully about what you are hearing. The people who have some understanding will receive more. But those who do not have understanding will lose even what they think they have.”
Jesus’ Followers Are His True Family
(Mt. 12:46–50; Mk. 3:31–35)
19Jesus’ mother and brothers came to visit him. But they could not get close to him, because there were so many people. 20Someone said to Jesus, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside. They want to see you.”
21Jesus answered them, “My mother and my brothers are those who listen to God’s teaching and obey it.”
Jesus’ Followers See His Power
(Mt. 8:23–27; Mk. 4:35–41)
22One day Jesus and his followers got into a boat. He said to them, “Come with me across the lake.” And so they started across. 23While they were sailing, Jesus slept. A big storm blew across the lake, and the boat began to fill with water. They were in danger. 24The followers went to Jesus and woke him. They said, “Master! Master! We will drown!”
Jesus got up. He gave a command to the wind and the waves. The wind stopped, and the lake became calm. 25He said to his followers, “Where is your faith?”
They were afraid and amazed. They said to each other, “What kind of man is this? He commands the wind and the water, and they obey him.”
Jesus Frees a Man From Evil Spirits
(Mt. 8:28–34; Mk. 5:1–20)
26Jesus and his followers sailed on across the lake. They sailed to the area where the Gerasene people live, across from Galilee. 27When Jesus got out of the boat, a man from that town came to him. This man had demons inside him. For a long time he had worn no clothes. He did not live in a house but in the caves where the dead are buried.
28-29The demon inside the man had often seized him, and he had been put in jail with his hands and feet in chains. But he would always break the chains. The demon inside him would force him to go out to the places where no one lived. Jesus commanded the evil spirit to come out of the man. When the man saw Jesus, he fell down before him, shouting loudly, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? Please, don’t punish me!”
30Jesus asked him, “What is your name?”
The man answered, “Legion.”#8:30 “Legion” This name means very many. A legion was about 6000 men in the Roman army. (He said his name was “Legion” because many demons had gone into him.) 31The demons begged Jesus not to send them into the bottomless pit.#8:31 bottomless pit Literally, “the abyss,” something like a deep hole where evil spirits are kept. 32On that hill there was a big herd of pigs eating. The demons begged Jesus to allow them to go into the pigs. So he allowed them to do this. 33Then the demons came out of the man and went into the pigs. The herd of pigs ran down the hill into the lake, and all were drowned.
34The men who were caring for the pigs ran away and told the story in the fields and in the town. 35People went out to see what had happened. They came to Jesus and found the man sitting there at the feet of Jesus. The man had clothes on and was in his right mind again; the demons were gone. This made the people afraid. 36The men who saw these things happen told the others all about how Jesus made the man well. 37All those who lived in the area around Gerasa asked Jesus to go away because they were afraid.
So Jesus got into the boat to go back to Galilee. 38The man he had healed begged to go with him. But Jesus sent him away, saying, 39“Go back home and tell people what God did for you.”
So the man went all over town telling what Jesus had done for him.
Jesus Gives Life to a Dead Girl and Heals a Sick Woman
(Mt. 9:18–26; Mk. 5:21–43)
40When Jesus went back to Galilee, the people welcomed him. Everyone was waiting for him. 41-42A man named Jairus came to him. He was a leader of the synagogue. He had only one daughter. She was twelve years old, and she was dying. So Jairus bowed down at the feet of Jesus and begged him to come to his house.
While Jesus was going to Jairus’ house, the people crowded all around him. 43A woman was there who had been bleeding for twelve years. She had spent all her money on doctors,#8:43 She had spent … doctors Some Greek copies do not have these words. but no doctor was able to heal her. 44The woman came behind Jesus and touched the bottom of his coat. At that moment, her bleeding stopped. 45Then Jesus said, “Who touched me?”
They all said they had not touched him. And Peter said, “Master, people are all around you, pushing against you.”
46But Jesus said, “Someone touched me. I felt power go out from me.” 47When the woman saw that she could not hide, she came forward, shaking. She bowed down before Jesus. While everyone listened, she told why she touched him. Then she said that she was healed immediately when she touched him. 48Jesus said to her, “My daughter, you are made well because you believed. Go in peace.”
49While Jesus was still speaking, someone came from the house of the synagogue leader and said, “Your daughter has died! Don’t bother the Teacher anymore.”
50Jesus heard this and said to Jairus, “Don’t be afraid! Just believe and your daughter will be well.”
51Jesus went to the house. He let only Peter, John, James, and the girl’s father and mother go inside with him. 52Everyone was crying and feeling sad because the girl was dead. But Jesus said, “Don’t cry. She is not dead. She is only sleeping.”
53The people laughed at him, because they knew that the girl was dead. 54But Jesus held her hand and called to her, “Little girl, stand up!” 55Her spirit came back into her, and she stood up immediately. Jesus said, “Give her something to eat.” 56The girl’s parents were amazed. He told them not to tell anyone about what happened.