11This is the Good News about Jesus Christ, the Son of God.1.1 Some manuscripts do not have the Son of God. 2
It began as the prophet Isaiah had written:
“God said, ‘I will send my messenger ahead of you
to clear the way for you.’
Someone is shouting in the desert,
‘Get the road ready for the Lord;
make a straight path for him to travel!’ ”
4So John appeared in the desert, baptizing and preaching.1.4 John appeared in the desert, baptizing and preaching; some manuscripts have John the Baptist appeared in the desert, preaching. “Turn away from your sins and be baptized,” he told the people, “and God will forgive your sins.” 5Many people from the province of Judea and the city of Jerusalem went out to hear John. They confessed their sins, and he baptized them in the River Jordan.
John wore clothes made of camel's hair, with a leather belt round his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. 7He announced to the people, “The man who will come after me is much greater than I am. I am not good enough even to bend down and untie his sandals. 8I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
9Not long afterwards Jesus came from Nazareth in the province of Galilee, and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10As soon as Jesus came up out of the water, he saw heaven opening and the Spirit coming down on him like a dove. 11
And a voice came from heaven, “You are my own dear Son. I am pleased with you.”
12At once the Spirit made him go into the desert, 13where he stayed forty days, being tempted by Satan. Wild animals were there also, but angels came and helped him.
14After John had been put in prison, Jesus went to Galilee and preached the Good News from God. 15
“The right time has come,” he said, “and the Kingdom of God is near! Turn away from your sins and believe the Good News!”
16As Jesus walked along the shore of Lake Galilee, he saw two fishermen, Simon and his brother Andrew, catching fish with a net. 17Jesus said to them, “Come with me, and I will teach you to catch people.” 18At once they left their nets and went with him.
19He went a little farther on and saw two other brothers, James and John, the sons of Zebedee. They were in their boat getting their nets ready. 20As soon as Jesus saw them, he called them; they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men and went with Jesus.
21Jesus and his disciples came to the town of Capernaum, and on the next Sabbath Jesus went to the synagogue and began to teach. 22
The people who heard him were amazed at the way he taught, for he wasn't like the teachers of the Law; instead, he taught with authority.
23Just then a man with an evil spirit in him came into the synagogue and screamed, 24“What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Are you here to destroy us? I know who you are — you are God's holy messenger!”
25Jesus ordered the spirit, “Be quiet, and come out of the man!”
26The evil spirit shook the man hard, gave a loud scream, and came out of him. 27The people were all so amazed that they started saying to one another, “What is this? Is it some kind of new teaching? This man has authority to give orders to the evil spirits, and they obey him!”
28And so the news about Jesus spread quickly everywhere in the province of Galilee.
29Jesus and his disciples, including James and John, left the synagogue and went straight to the home of Simon and Andrew. 30Simon's mother-in-law was sick in bed with a fever, and as soon as Jesus arrived, he was told about her. 31He went to her, took her by the hand, and helped her up. The fever left her, and she began to wait on them.
32After the sun had set and evening had come, people brought to Jesus all the sick and those who had demons. 33All the people of the town gathered in front of the house. 34Jesus healed many who were sick with all kinds of diseases and drove out many demons. He would not let the demons say anything, because they knew who he was.
35Very early the next morning, long before daylight, Jesus got up and left the house. He went out of the town to a lonely place, where he prayed. 36But Simon and his companions went out searching for him, 37and when they found him, they said, “Everyone is looking for you.”
38But Jesus answered, “We must go on to the other villages round here. I have to preach in them also, because that is why I came.”
So he travelled all over Galilee, preaching in the synagogues and driving out demons.
40A man suffering from a dreaded skin disease came to Jesus, knelt down, and begged him for help. “If you want to,” he said, “you can make me clean.”1.40 make me clean: This disease was considered to make a person ritually unclean.
41Jesus was filled with pity,1.41 pity; some manuscripts have anger. and stretched out his hand and touched him. “I do want to,” he answered. “Be clean!” 42At once the disease left the man, and he was clean. 43Then Jesus spoke sternly to him and sent him away at once, 44
after saying to him, “Listen, don't tell anyone about this. But go straight to the priest and let him examine you; then in order to prove to everyone that you are cured, offer the sacrifice that Moses ordered.”
45But the man went away and began to spread the news everywhere. Indeed, he talked so much that Jesus could not go into a town publicly. Instead, he stayed out in lonely places, and people came to him from everywhere.
21A few days later Jesus went back to Capernaum, and the news spread that he was at home. 2So many people came together that there was no room left, not even out in front of the door. Jesus was preaching the message to them 3when four men arrived, carrying a paralysed man to Jesus. 4Because of the crowd, however, they could not get the man to him. So they made a hole in the roof right above the place where Jesus was. When they had made an opening, they let the man down, lying on his mat. 5Seeing how much faith they had, Jesus said to the paralysed man, “My son, your sins are forgiven.”
6Some teachers of the Law who were sitting there thought to themselves, 7“How does he dare to talk like this? This is blasphemy! God is the only one who can forgive sins!”
8At once Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he said to them, “Why do you think such things? 9Is it easier to say to this paralysed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven’, or to say, ‘Get up, pick up your mat, and walk’? 10I will prove to you, then, that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralysed man, 11“I tell you, get up, pick up your mat, and go home!”
12While they all watched, the man got up, picked up his mat, and hurried away. They were all completely amazed and praised God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this!”
13Jesus went back again to the shore of Lake Galilee. A crowd came to him, and he started teaching them. 14As he walked along, he saw a tax collector, Levi son of Alphaeus, sitting in his office. Jesus said to him, “Follow me.” Levi got up and followed him.
15Later on Jesus was having a meal in Levi's house.2.15 in Levi's house; or in his (that is, Jesus') house. A large number of tax collectors and other outcasts were following Jesus, and many of them joined him and his disciples at the table. 16Some teachers of the Law, who were Pharisees, saw that Jesus was eating with these outcasts and tax collectors, so they asked his disciples, “Why does he eat with such people?”
17Jesus heard them and answered, “People who are well do not need a doctor, but only those who are sick. I have not come to call respectable people, but outcasts.”
18On one occasion the followers of John the Baptist and the Pharisees were fasting. Some people came to Jesus and asked him, “Why is it that the disciples of John the Baptist and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but yours do not?”
19Jesus answered, “Do you expect the guests at a wedding party to go without food? Of course not! As long as the bridegroom is with them, they will not do that. 20But the day will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast.
21“No one uses a piece of new cloth to patch up an old coat, because the new patch will shrink and tear off some of the old cloth, making an even bigger hole. 22Nor does anyone pour new wine into used wineskins, because the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the skins will be ruined. Instead, new wine must be poured into fresh wineskins.”
Jesus was walking through some cornfields on the Sabbath. As his disciples walked along with him, they began to pick the ears of corn. 24So the Pharisees said to Jesus, “Look, it is against our Law for your disciples to do that on the Sabbath!”
Jesus answered, “Have you never read what David did that time when he needed something to eat? He and his men were hungry, 26
so he went into the house of God and ate the bread offered to God. This happened when Abiathar was the High Priest. According to our Law only the priests may eat this bread — but David ate it and even gave it to his men.”
27And Jesus concluded, “The Sabbath was made for the good of human beings; they were not made for the Sabbath. 28So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.”