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Matthew 10-12 Common English Bible (CEB)

Mission of the Twelve

10 He called his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits to throw them out and to heal every disease and every sickness. Here are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon, who is called Peter; and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee; and John his brother; Philip; and Bartholomew; Thomas; and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus; and Thaddaeus; Simon the Cananaean;[a] and Judas, who betrayed Jesus.

Commissioning of the Twelve

Jesus sent these twelve out and commanded them, “Don’t go among the Gentiles or into a Samaritan city. Go instead to the lost sheep, the people of Israel. As you go, make this announcement: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those with skin diseases, and throw out demons. You received without having to pay. Therefore, give without demanding payment. Workers deserve to be fed, so don’t gather gold or silver or copper coins for your money belts to take on your trips. 10 Don’t take a backpack for the road or two shirts or sandals or a walking stick. 11 Whatever city or village you go into, find somebody in it who is worthy and stay there until you go on your way. 12 When you go into a house, say, ‘Peace!’ 13 If the house is worthy, give it your blessing of peace. But if the house isn’t worthy, take back your blessing. 14 If anyone refuses to welcome you or listen to your words, shake the dust off your feet as you leave that house or city. 15 I assure you that it will be more bearable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah on Judgment Day than it will be for that city.

Response to harassment

16 “Look, I’m sending you as sheep among wolves. Therefore, be wise as snakes and innocent as doves. 17 Watch out for people—because they will hand you over to councils and they will beat you in their synagogues. 18 They will haul you in front of governors and even kings because of me so that you may give your testimony to them and to the Gentiles. 19 Whenever they hand you over, don’t worry about how to speak or what you will say, because what you can say will be given to you at that moment. 20 You aren’t doing the talking, but the Spirit of my Father is doing the talking through you. 21 Brothers and sisters will hand each other over to be executed. A father will turn his child in. Children will defy their parents and have them executed. 22 Everyone will hate you on account of my name. But whoever stands firm until the end will be saved. 23 Whenever they harass you in one city, escape to the next, because I assure that you will not go through all the cities of Israel before the Human One[b] comes.

24 “Disciples aren’t greater than their teacher, and slaves aren’t greater than their master. 25 It’s enough for disciples to be like their teacher and slaves like their master. If they have called the head of the house Beelzebul, it’s certain that they will call the members of his household by even worse names.

Whom to fear

26 “Therefore, don’t be afraid of those people because nothing is hidden that won’t be revealed, and nothing secret that won’t be brought out into the open. 27 What I say to you in the darkness, tell in the light; and what you hear whispered, announce from the rooftops. 28 Don’t be afraid of those who kill the body but can’t kill the soul. Instead, be afraid of the one who can destroy both body and soul in hell. 29 Aren’t two sparrows sold for a small coin? But not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father knowing about it already. 30 Even the hairs of your head are all counted. 31 Don’t be afraid. You are worth more than many sparrows.

Confessing Christ to people

32 “Therefore, everyone who acknowledges me before people, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven. 33 But everyone who denies me before people, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.

Trouble in the family

34 “Don’t think that I’ve come to bring peace to the earth. I haven’t come to bring peace but a sword. 35 I’ve come to turn a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. 36 People’s enemies are members of their own households.[c]

37 “Those who love father or mother more than me aren’t worthy of me. Those who love son or daughter more than me aren’t worthy of me. 38 Those who don’t pick up their crosses and follow me aren’t worthy of me. 39 Those who find their lives will lose them, and those who lose their lives because of me will find them.

Rewards

40 “Those who receive you are also receiving me, and those who receive me are receiving the one who sent me. 41  Those who receive a prophet as a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward. Those who receive a righteous person as a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward. 42  I assure you that everybody who gives even a cup of cold water to these little ones because they are my disciples will certainly be rewarded.”

Ministry to the people

11 When Jesus finished teaching his twelve disciples, he went on from there to teach and preach in their cities.

Question from John the Baptist

Now when John heard in prison about the things the Christ was doing, he sent word by his disciples to Jesus, asking, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?”

Jesus responded, “Go, report to John what you hear and see. Those who were blind are able to see. Those who were crippled are walking. People with skin diseases are cleansed. Those who were deaf now hear. Those who were dead are raised up. The poor have good news proclaimed to them.[d] Happy are those who don’t stumble and fall because of me.”

Appeal of John’s ministry

When John’s disciples had gone, Jesus spoke to the crowds about John: “What did you go out to the wilderness to see? A stalk blowing in the wind? What did you go out to see? A man dressed up in refined clothes? Look, those who wear refined clothes are in royal palaces. What did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. 10 He is the one of whom it is written: Look, I’m sending my messenger before you, who will prepare your way before you.[e]

Significance of John’s ministry

11 “I assure you that no one who has ever been born is greater than John the Baptist. Yet whoever is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. 12 From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven is violently attacked as violent people seize it. 13 All the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John came. 14 If you are willing to accept it, he is Elijah who is to come. 15 Let the person who has ears, hear.

This generation

16 “To what will I compare this generation? It is like a child sitting in the marketplaces calling out to others, 17  ‘We played the flute for you and you didn’t dance. We sang a funeral song and you didn’t mourn.’ 18  For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon.’ 19  Yet the Human One[f] came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Look, a glutton and a drunk, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ But wisdom is proved to be right by her works.”

Condemnation of Bethsaida and Capernaum

20 Then he began to scold the cities where he had done his greatest miracles because they didn’t change their hearts and lives. 21 “How terrible it will be for you, Chorazin! How terrible it will be for you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles done among you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have changed their hearts and lives and put on funeral clothes and ashes a long time ago. 22  But I say to you that Tyre and Sidon will be better off on Judgment Day than you. 23  And you, Capernaum, will you be honored by being raised up to heaven? No, you will be thrown down to the place of the dead. After all, if the miracles that were done among you had been done in Sodom, it would still be here today. 24  But I say to you that it will be better for the land of Sodom on the Judgment Day than it will be for you.”

The Father and the Son

25 At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you’ve hidden these things from the wise and intelligent and have shown them to babies. 26 Indeed, Father, this brings you happiness.

27 “My Father has handed all things over to me. No one knows the Son except the Father. And nobody knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son wants to reveal him.

28 “Come to me, all you who are struggling hard and carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest. 29  Put on my yoke, and learn from me. I’m gentle and humble. And you will find rest for yourselves. 30  My yoke is easy to bear, and my burden is light.”

Working on the Sabbath

12 At that time Jesus went through the wheat fields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry so they were picking heads of wheat and eating them. When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, “Look, your disciples are breaking the Sabbath law.”

But he said to them, “Haven’t you read what David did when he and those with him were hungry? He went into God’s house and broke the law by eating the bread of the presence, which only the priests were allowed to eat. Or haven’t you read in the Law that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple treat the Sabbath as any other day and are still innocent? But I tell you that something greater than the temple is here. If you had known what this means, I want mercy and not sacrifice,[g] you wouldn’t have condemned the innocent. The Human One[h] is Lord of the Sabbath.”

Healing on the Sabbath

Jesus left that place and went into their synagogue. 10 A man with a withered hand was there. Wanting to bring charges against Jesus, they asked, “Does the Law allow a person to heal on the Sabbath?”

11 Jesus replied, “Who among you has a sheep that falls into a pit on the Sabbath and will not take hold of it and pull it out? 12  How much more valuable is a person than a sheep! So the Law allows a person to do what is good on the Sabbath.” 13 Then Jesus said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” So he did and it was made healthy, just like the other one. 14 The Pharisees went out and met in order to find a way to destroy Jesus.

Healing the crowd

15 Jesus knew what they intended to do, so he went away from there. Large crowds followed him, and he healed them all. 16 But he ordered them not to spread the word about him, 17 so that what was spoken through Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled:

18 Look, my Servant whom I chose,
        the one I love, in whom I find great pleasure.
I’ll put my Spirit upon him,
        and he’ll announce judgment to the Gentiles.
19 He won’t argue or shout,
        and nobody will hear his voice in the streets.
20 He won’t break a bent stalk,
        and he won’t snuff out a smoldering wick,
            until he makes justice win.
21 And the Gentiles will put their hope in his name.[i]

22 They brought to Jesus a demon-possessed man who was blind and unable to speak. Jesus healed him so that he could both speak and see. 23 All the crowds were amazed and said, “This man couldn’t be the Son of David, could he?”

24 When the Pharisees heard, they said, “This man throws out demons only by the authority of Beelzebul, the ruler of the demons.”

25 Because Jesus knew what they were thinking, he replied, “Every kingdom involved in civil war becomes a wasteland. Every city or house torn apart by divisions will collapse. 26 If Satan throws out Satan, he is at war with himself. How then can his kingdom endure? 27 And if I throw out demons by the authority of Beelzebul, then by whose authority do your followers throw them out? Therefore, they will be your judges. 28 But if I throw out demons by the power of God’s Spirit, then God’s kingdom has already overtaken you. 29 Can people go into a house that belongs to a strong man and steal his possessions, unless they first tie up the strong man? Then they can rob his house. 30 Whoever isn’t with me is against me, and whoever doesn’t gather with me scatters.

Insulting the Holy Spirit

31 “Therefore, I tell you that people will be forgiven for every sin and insult to God. But insulting the Holy Spirit won’t be forgiven. 32 And whoever speaks a word against the Human One[j] will be forgiven. But whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit won’t be forgiven, not in this age or in the age that is coming.

Trees and fruits

33 “Either consider the tree good and its fruit good, or consider the tree rotten and its fruit rotten. A tree is known by its fruit. 34  Children of snakes! How can you speak good things while you are evil? What fills the heart comes out of the mouth. 35  Good people bring out good things from their good treasure. But evil people bring out evil things from their evil treasure. 36  I tell you that people will have to answer on Judgment Day for every useless word they speak. 37  By your words you will be either judged innocent or condemned as guilty.”

Request for a sign

38 At that time some of the legal experts and the Pharisees requested of Jesus, “Teacher, we would like to see a sign from you.”

39 But he replied, “An evil and unfaithful generation searches for a sign, but it won’t receive any sign except Jonah’s sign. 40 Just as Jonah was in the whale’s belly for three days and three nights,[k] so the Human One[l] will be in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights. 41 The citizens of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it as guilty, because they changed their hearts and lives in response to Jonah’s preaching. And look, someone greater than Jonah is here. 42 The queen of the South will be raised up by God at the judgment with this generation and condemn it because she came from a distant land to hear Solomon’s wisdom. And look, someone greater than Solomon is here.

Unclean spirit seeking a home

43 “When an unclean spirit leaves a person, it wanders through dry places looking for a place to rest. But it doesn’t find any. 44  Then it says, ‘I’ll go back to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the place vacant, cleaned up, and decorated. 45  Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more evil than itself. They go in and make their home there. That person is worse off at the end than at the beginning. This is the way it will be also for this evil generation.”

Jesus’ family

46 While Jesus was speaking to the crowds, his mother and brothers stood outside trying to speak with him. 47 Someone said to him, “Look, your mother and brothers are outside wanting to speak with you.”

48 Jesus replied, “Who is my mother? Who are my brothers?” 49 He stretched out his hand toward his disciples and said, “Look, here are my mother and my brothers. 50  Whoever does the will of my Father who is in heaven is my brother, sister, and mother.”

Common English Bible (CEB)

Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible

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