Matthew 16 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
Some People Doubt Jesus’ Authority
16 The Pharisees and Sadducees came to Jesus. They wanted to test him. So they asked him to show them a miracle as a sign from God.
2 Jesus answered, “When you people see the sunset, you know what the weather will be. If the sky is red, you say we will have good weather. 3 And in the morning, if the sky is dark and red, you say that it will be a rainy day. These are signs of the weather. You see these signs in the sky and know what they mean. In the same way, you see the things that are happening now. These are also signs, but you don’t know their meaning. 4 It is the evil and sinful people who want to see a miracle as a sign from God. But no miracle will be done to prove anything to them. The only sign will be the miracle that happened to Jonah.[a]” Then Jesus went away from there.
Jesus’ Followers Misunderstand Him
5 Jesus and his followers went across the lake. But the followers forgot to bring bread. 6 Jesus said to the followers, “Be careful! Guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and the Sadducees.”
7 The followers discussed the meaning of this. They said, “Did Jesus say this because we forgot to bring bread?”
8 Jesus knew that they were talking about this. So he asked them, “Why are you talking about not having bread? Your faith is small. 9 Do you still not understand? Remember the five loaves of bread that fed the 5000 people and the many baskets you filled with the bread that was left? 10 And remember the seven loaves of bread that fed the 4000 people and the many baskets you filled that time? 11 So how could you think that I am concerned about bread? I am telling you to be careful and guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and the Sadducees.”
12 Then the followers understood what Jesus meant. He was not telling them to guard against the yeast used in bread. He was telling them to guard against the teaching of the Pharisees and the Sadducees.
Peter Says Jesus Is the Messiah
13 Jesus went to the area of Caesarea Philippi. He said to his followers, “Who do people say I am[b]?”
14 They answered, “Some people say you are John the Baptizer. Others say you are Elijah. And some say you are Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”
15 Then Jesus said to his followers, “And who do you say I am?”
16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
17 Jesus answered, “You are blessed, Simon son of Jonah. No one taught you that. My Father in heaven showed you who I am. 18 So I tell you, you are Peter.[c] And I will build my church on this rock. The power of death[d] will not be able to defeat my church. 19 I will give you the keys to God’s kingdom. When you speak judgment here on earth, that judgment will be God’s judgment. When you promise forgiveness here on earth, that forgiveness will be God’s forgiveness.”[e]
20 Then Jesus warned his followers not to tell anyone he was the Messiah.
Jesus Says He Must Die
21 From that time Jesus began telling his followers that he must go to Jerusalem. He explained that the older Jewish leaders, the leading priests, and the teachers of the law would make him suffer many things. And he told his followers that he must be killed. Then, on the third day, he would be raised from death.
22 Peter took Jesus away from the other followers to talk to him alone. He began to criticize him. He said, “God save you from those sufferings, Lord! That will never happen to you!”
23 Then Jesus said to Peter, “Get away from me, Satan[f]! You are not helping me! You don’t care about the same things God does. You care only about things that people think are important.”
24 Then Jesus said to his followers, “If any of you want to be my follower, you must stop thinking about yourself and what you want. You must be willing to carry the cross that is given to you for following me. 25 Any of you who try to save the life you have will lose it. But you who give up your life for me will find true life. 26 It is worth nothing for you to have the whole world if you yourself are lost. You could never pay enough to buy back your life. 27 The Son of Man will come again with his Father’s glory and with his angels. And he will reward everyone for what they have done. 28 Believe me when I say that there are some people standing here who will see the Son of Man coming with his kingdom before they die.”