181Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to teach them that they should always pray and never become discouraged. 2“In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected people. 3And there was a widow in that same town who kept coming to him and pleading for her rights, saying, ‘Help me against my opponent!’ 4For a long time the judge refused to act, but at last he said to himself, ‘Even though I don't fear God or respect people, 5yet because of all the trouble this widow is giving me, I will see to it that she gets her rights. If I don't, she will keep on coming and finally wear me out!’ ”
6And the Lord continued, “Listen to what that corrupt judge said. 7Now, will God not judge in favour of his own people who cry to him day and night for help? Will he be slow to help them? 8I tell you, he will judge in their favour and do it quickly. But will the Son of Man find faith on earth when he comes?”
9Jesus also told this parable to people who were sure of their own goodness and despised everybody else. 10“Once there were two men who went up to the Temple to pray: one was a Pharisee, the other a tax collector.
11“The Pharisee stood apart by himself and prayed,18.11 stood apart by himself and prayed; some manuscripts have stood up and prayed to himself. ‘I thank you, God, that I am not greedy, dishonest, or an adulterer, like everybody else. I thank you that I am not like that tax collector over there. 12I fast two days a week, and I give you a tenth of all my income.’
13“But the tax collector stood at a distance and would not even raise his face to heaven, but beat on his breast and said, ‘God, have pity on me, a sinner!’ 14
I tell you,” said Jesus, “the tax collector, and not the Pharisee, was in the right with God when he went home. For all who make themselves great will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be made great.”
15Some people brought their babies to Jesus for him to place his hands on them. The disciples saw them and scolded them for doing so, 16but Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the children come to me and do not stop them, because the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 17Remember this! Whoever does not receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.”
18A Jewish leader asked Jesus, “Good Teacher, what must I do to receive eternal life?”
19“Why do you call me good?” Jesus asked him. “No one is good except God alone. 20
You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery; do not commit murder; do not steal; do not accuse anyone falsely; respect your father and your mother.’ ”
21The man replied, “Ever since I was young, I have obeyed all these commandments.”
22When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “There is still one more thing you need to do. Sell all you have and give the money to the poor, and you will have riches in heaven; then come and follow me.” 23But when the man heard this, he became very sad, because he was very rich.
24Jesus saw that he was sad and said, “How hard it is for rich people to enter the Kingdom of God! 25It is much harder for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God than for a camel to go through the eye of a needle.”
26The people who heard him asked, “Who, then, can be saved?”
27Jesus answered, “What is humanly impossible is possible for God.”
28Then Peter said, “Look! We have left our homes to follow you.”
29“Yes,” Jesus said to them, “and I assure you that anyone who leaves home or wife or brothers or parents or children for the sake of the Kingdom of God 30will receive much more in this present age and eternal life in the age to come.”
31Jesus took the twelve disciples aside and said to them, “Listen! We are going to Jerusalem where everything the prophets wrote about the Son of Man will come true. 32He will be handed over to the Gentiles, who will mock him, insult him, and spit on him. 33They will whip him and kill him, but three days later he will rise to life.”
34But the disciples did not understand any of these things; the meaning of the words was hidden from them, and they did not know what Jesus was talking about.
35As Jesus was coming near Jericho, there was a blind man sitting by the road, begging. 36When he heard the crowd passing by, he asked, “What is this?”
37“Jesus of Nazareth is passing by,” they told him.
38He cried out, “Jesus! Son of David! Take pity on me!”
39The people in front scolded him and told him to be quiet. But he shouted even more loudly, “Son of David! Take pity on me!”
40So Jesus stopped and ordered the blind man to be brought to him. When he came near, Jesus asked him, 41“What do you want me to do for you?”
“Sir,” he answered, “I want to see again.”
42Jesus said to him, “Then see! Your faith has made you well.”
43At once he was able to see, and he followed Jesus, giving thanks to God. When the crowd saw it, they all praised God.
191Jesus went on into Jericho and was passing through. 2There was a chief tax collector there named Zacchaeus, who was rich. 3He was trying to see who Jesus was, but he was a little man and could not see Jesus because of the crowd. 4So he ran ahead of the crowd and climbed a sycomore tree to see Jesus, who was going to pass that way. 5When Jesus came to that place, he looked up and said to Zacchaeus, “Hurry down, Zacchaeus, because I must stay in your house today.”
6Zacchaeus hurried down and welcomed him with great joy. 7All the people who saw it started grumbling, “This man has gone as a guest to the home of a sinner!”
8Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Listen, sir! I will give half my belongings to the poor, and if I have cheated anyone, I will pay back four times as much.”
9Jesus said to him, “Salvation has come to this house today, for this man, also, is a descendant of Abraham. 10
The Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
11While the people were listening to this, Jesus continued and told them a parable. He was now almost at Jerusalem, and they supposed that the Kingdom of God was just about to appear. 12So he said, “There was once a man of high rank who was going to a country far away to be made king, after which he planned to come back home. 13Before he left, he called his ten servants and gave them each a gold coin and told them, ‘See what you can earn with this while I am gone.’ 14Now, his own people hated him, and so they sent messengers after him to say, ‘We don't want this man to be our king.’
15“The man was made king and came back. At once he ordered his servants to appear before him, in order to find out how much they had earned. 16The first one came and said, ‘Sir, I have earned ten gold coins with the one you gave me.’ 17‘Well done,’ he said; ‘you are a good servant! Since you were faithful in small matters, I will put you in charge of ten cities.’ 18The second servant came and said, ‘Sir, I have earned five gold coins with the one you gave me.’ 19To this one he said, ‘You will be in charge of five cities.’
20“Another servant came and said, ‘Sir, here is your gold coin; I kept it hidden in a handkerchief. 21I was afraid of you, because you are a hard man. You take what is not yours and reap what you did not sow.’ 22He said to him, ‘You bad servant! I will use your own words to condemn you! You know that I am a hard man, taking what is not mine and reaping what I have not sown. 23Well, then, why didn't you put my money in the bank? Then I would have received it back with interest when I returned.’
24“Then he said to those who were standing there, ‘Take the gold coin away from him and give it to the servant who has ten coins.’ 25But they said to him, ‘Sir, he already has ten coins!’ 26
‘I tell you,’ he replied, ‘that to all those who have something, even more will be given; but those who have nothing, even the little that they have will be taken away from them. 27Now, as for those enemies of mine who did not want me to be their king, bring them here and kill them in my presence!’ ”
28After Jesus said this, he went on ahead of them to Jerusalem. 29As he came near Bethphage and Bethany at the Mount of Olives, he sent two disciples ahead 30with these instructions: “Go to the village there ahead of you; as you go in, you will find a colt tied up that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 31If someone asks you why you are untying it, tell him that the Master19.31; 19.34 the Master; or its owner. needs it.”
32They went on their way and found everything just as Jesus had told them. 33As they were untying the colt, its owners said to them, “Why are you untying it?”
34“The Master19.34; 19.31 the Master; or its owner. needs it,” they answered, 35and they took the colt to Jesus. Then they threw their cloaks over the animal and helped Jesus get on. 36As he rode on, people spread their cloaks on the road.
37When he came near Jerusalem, at the place where the road went down the Mount of Olives, the large crowd of his disciples began to thank God and praise him in loud voices for all the great things that they had seen: 38
“God bless the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory to God!”
39Then some of the Pharisees in the crowd spoke to Jesus. “Teacher,” they said, “command your disciples to be quiet!”
40Jesus answered, “I tell you that if they keep quiet, the stones themselves will start shouting.”
41He came closer to the city, and when he saw it, he wept over it, 42saying, “If you only knew today what is needed for peace! But now you cannot see it! 43The time will come when your enemies will surround you with barricades, blockade you, and close in on you from every side. 44They will completely destroy you and the people within your walls; not a single stone will they leave in its place, because you did not recognize the time when God came to save you!”
45Then Jesus went into the Temple and began to drive out the merchants, 46
saying to them, “It is written in the Scriptures that God said, ‘My Temple will be a house of prayer.’ But you have turned it into a hideout for thieves!”
Every day Jesus taught in the Temple. The chief priests, the teachers of the Law, and the leaders of the people wanted to kill him, 48but they could not find a way to do it, because all the people kept listening to him, not wanting to miss a single word.
201One day when Jesus was in the Temple teaching the people and preaching the Good News, the chief priests and the teachers of the Law, together with the elders, came 2and said to him, “Tell us, what right have you to do these things? Who gave you this right?”
3Jesus answered them, “Now let me ask you a question. Tell me, 4did John's right to baptize come from God or from human beings?”
5They started to argue among themselves, “What shall we say? If we say, ‘From God,’ he will say, ‘Why, then, did you not believe John?’ 6But if we say ‘From human beings,’ this whole crowd here will stone us, because they are convinced that John was a prophet.” 7So they answered, “We don't know where it came from.”
8And Jesus said to them, “Neither will I tell you, then, by what right I do these things.”
Then Jesus told the people this parable: “There was once a man who planted a vineyard, let it out to tenants, and then left home for a long time. 10When the time came to gather the grapes, he sent a slave to the tenants to receive from them his share of the harvest. But the tenants beat the slave and sent him back without a thing. 11So he sent another slave; but the tenants beat him also, treated him shamefully, and sent him back without a thing. 12Then he sent a third slave; the tenants wounded him, too, and threw him out. 13Then the owner of the vineyard said, ‘What shall I do? I will send my own dear son; surely they will respect him!’ 14But when the tenants saw him, they said to one another, ‘This is the owner's son. Let's kill him, and his property will be ours!’ 15So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him.
“What, then, will the owner of the vineyard do to the tenants?” Jesus asked. 16“He will come and kill those men, and hand the vineyard over to other tenants.”
When the people heard this, they said, “Surely not!”
Jesus looked at them and asked, “What, then, does this scripture mean?
‘The stone which the builders rejected as worthless
turned out to be the most important of all.’18Everyone who falls on that stone will be cut to pieces; and if that stone falls on someone, it will crush him to dust.”
19The teachers of the Law and the chief priests tried to arrest Jesus on the spot, because they knew that he had told this parable against them; but they were afraid of the people. 20So they looked for an opportunity. They bribed some men to pretend they were sincere, and they sent them to trap Jesus with questions, so that they could hand him over to the authority and power of the Roman Governor. 21These spies said to Jesus, “Teacher, we know that what you say and teach is right. We know that you pay no attention to anyone's status, but teach the truth about God's will for people. 22Tell us, is it against our Law for us to pay taxes to the Roman Emperor, or not?”
23But Jesus saw through their trick and said to them, 24“Show me a silver coin. Whose face and name are these on it?”
“The Emperor's,” they answered.
25So Jesus said, “Well, then, pay the Emperor what belongs to the Emperor, and pay God what belongs to God.”
26There before the people they could not catch him out in anything, so they kept quiet, amazed at his answer.
Then some Sadducees, who say that people will not rise from death, came to Jesus and said, 28
“Teacher, Moses wrote this law for us: ‘If a man dies and leaves a wife but no children, that man's brother must marry the widow so that they can have children who will be considered the dead man's children.’ 29Once there were seven brothers; the eldest got married and died without having children. 30Then the second one married the woman, 31and then the third. The same thing happened to all seven — they died without having children. 32Last of all, the woman died. 33Now, on the day when the dead rise to life, whose wife will she be? All seven of them had married her.”
34Jesus answered them, “The men and women of this age marry, 35but the men and women who are worthy to rise from death and live in the age to come will not then marry. 36They will be like angels and cannot die. They are the children of God, because they have risen from death. 37
And Moses clearly proves that the dead are raised to life. In the passage about the burning bush he speaks of the Lord as ‘the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’ 38He is the God of the living, not of the dead, for to him all are alive.”
39Some of the teachers of the Law spoke up, “A good answer, Teacher!” 40For they did not dare ask him any more questions.
41Jesus asked them, “How can it be said that the Messiah will be the descendant of David? 42
For David himself says in the book of Psalms,
‘The Lord said to my Lord:
Sit here on my right
43until I put your enemies as a footstool under your feet.’44David called him ‘Lord’; how, then, can the Messiah be David's descendant?”
45As all the people listened to him, Jesus said to his disciples, 46“Be on your guard against the teachers of the Law, who like to walk about in their long robes and love to be greeted with respect in the market place; who choose the reserved seats in the synagogues and the best places at feasts; 47who take advantage of widows and rob them of their homes, and then make a show of saying long prayers! Their punishment will be all the worse!”