Matthew 11-12 Amplified Bible (AMP)
11 When Jesus had finished giving instructions to His twelve disciples, He went on from there to teach and to preach in their [Galilean] cities.
2 Now when [a]John [the Baptist] in prison heard about the activities of Christ, he sent word by his disciples 3 and asked Him, “Are You the Expected One (the Messiah), or should we look for someone else [who will be the promised One]?” 4 Jesus answered, “Go and report to John what you hear and see: 5 the blind receive [their] sight and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed [by healing] and the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor have the gospel preached to them. 6 And blessed [joyful, favored by God] is he who does not take offense at Me [accepting Me as the Messiah and trusting confidently in My message of salvation].”
Jesus’ Tribute to John
7 As these men were going away, Jesus began to speak to the crowds about John: “What did you go out in the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind [which is commonplace]? 8 What did you go out to see? A man dressed in soft clothing [entirely unsuited for the harsh desert]? Those who wear soft clothing are in the palaces of kings! 9 But what did you [really] go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and one [more eminent, more remarkable, and] [b]far more than a prophet [who foretells the future]. 10 This is the one of whom it is written [by the prophet Malachi],
‘Behold, I send My messenger ahead of You,
11 I assure you and most solemnly say to you, among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater [in privilege] than he. 12 From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violent assault, and violent men seize it by force [as a precious prize]. 13 For all the prophets and the Law prophesied up until John. 14 And if you are willing to accept it, John himself is [the fulfillment of] Elijah [as the messenger] who was to come [before the kingdom]. 15 He who has ears to hear, let him hear and heed My words.
16 “But to what shall I compare this generation? It is like little children sitting in the market places, who call to the others, 17 and say ‘We piped the flute for you [playing wedding], and you did not dance; we wailed sad dirges [playing funeral], and you did not mourn and cry aloud.’ 18 For John came neither eating nor drinking [with others], and they say, ‘He has a demon!’ 19 The Son of Man came eating and drinking [with others], and they say, ‘Look! A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners [including non-observant Jews]!’ Yet wisdom is justified and vindicated by her deeds [in the lives of those who respond to Me].”
The Unrepenting Cities
20 Then He began to denounce [the people in] the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent [and change their hearts and lives]. 21 “Woe (judgment is coming) to you, [c]Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon [cities of the Gentiles], they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes [their hearts would have been changed and they would have expressed sorrow for their sin and rebellion against God]. 22 Nevertheless I say to you, it will be more tolerable for [the pagan cities of] Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. 23 And you, Capernaum, are you to be exalted to heaven [for your apathy and unresponsiveness]? You will descend to Hades (the realm of the dead); for if the miracles done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. 24 But I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom on the day of judgment, than for you.”
Come to Me
25 At that time Jesus said, “I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth [I openly and joyfully acknowledge Your great wisdom], that You have hidden these things [these spiritual truths] from the wise and intelligent and revealed them to infants [to new believers, to those seeking God’s will and purpose]. 26 Yes, Father, for this way was well-pleasing in Your sight. 27 All things have been handed over to Me by My Father; and no one fully knows and accurately understands the Son except the Father; and no one fully knows and accurately understands the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son [deliberately] wills to reveal Him.
28 “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavily burdened [by religious rituals that provide no peace], and I will give you rest [refreshing your souls with salvation]. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me [following Me as My disciple], for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest (renewal, blessed quiet) for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy [to bear] and My burden is light.”
12 At that particular time Jesus went through the grainfields on the [d]Sabbath, and His disciples were hungry and began to pick the heads of grain and eat them. 2 But when the Pharisees saw this, they said to Him, “Look! Your disciples are doing what [e]is unlawful on the Sabbath.” 3 He said to them, “Have you not read [in the Scriptures] what David did when he was hungry, he and those who accompanied him— 4 how he went into the house of God, and they ate the [f]consecrated bread, which was not lawful for him to eat nor for those with him, but for the priests only? 5 Or have you not read in the Law, that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple break [the sanctity of] the Sabbath and yet are innocent? 6 But I tell you that something greater than the temple is here. 7 And if you had only known what this statement means, ‘I desire compassion [for those in distress], [g]and not [animal] sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the innocent.
Lord of the Sabbath
8 For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.”
9 Leaving there, He went into their synagogue. 10 A man was there whose hand was withered. And they asked Jesus, “Is it lawful and permissible to heal on the Sabbath?”—they asked this so that they might accuse Him and bring charges into court. 11 But He said to them, “What man is there among you who, if he has only one sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much more valuable then is a man than a sheep! So it is lawful and permissible to do good on the Sabbath.” 13 Then He said to the man, “Reach out your hand!” The man reached out and it was restored, as normal and healthy as the other. 14 But the Pharisees went out and conspired against Him, discussing how they could destroy Him.
15 Being aware of this, Jesus left there. Many followed Him, and He healed all of them [who were sick], 16 and warned them not to tell [publicly] who He was. 17 This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah:
The Pharisees Rebuked
22 Then a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute was brought to Jesus, and He healed him, so that the mute man both spoke and saw. 23 All the people wondered in amazement, and said, “Could this be the Son of David (the Messiah)?” 24 But the Pharisees heard it and said, “This man [h]casts out demons only by [the help of] Beelzebul (Satan) the prince of the demons.”
25 Knowing their thoughts Jesus said to them, “Any kingdom that is divided against itself is being laid waste; and no city or house divided against itself will [continue to] stand. 26 If Satan casts out Satan [that is, his demons], he has become divided against himself and disunited; how then will his kingdom stand? 27 If I cast out the demons by [the help of] Beelzebul (Satan), by whom do your sons drive them out? For this reason they will be your judges. 28 But if it is by the Spirit of God that I cast out the demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you [before you expected it]. 29 Or how can anyone go into a strong man’s house and steal his property unless he first overpowers and ties up the strong man? Then he will ransack and rob his house.
The Unpardonable Sin
30 He who is not with Me [once and for all on My side] is against Me; and he who does not [unequivocally] gather with Me scatters.
31 “Therefore I say to you, every sin and blasphemy [every evil, abusive, injurious speaking, or indignity against sacred things] will be forgiven people, but [i]blasphemy against the [Holy] Spirit will not be forgiven. 32 Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit [by attributing the miracles done by Me to Satan] will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.
Words Reveal Character
33 “Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for the tree is recognized and judged by its fruit. 34 You brood of vipers, how can you speak good things when you are evil? For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart. 35 The good man, from his [inner] good treasure, brings out good things; and the evil man, from his [inner] evil treasure, brings out evil things. 36 But I tell you, on the day of judgment people will have to give an accounting for every careless or useless word they speak. 37 For by your words [reflecting your spiritual condition] you will be justified and acquitted of the guilt of sin; and by your words [rejecting Me] you will be condemned and sentenced.”
The Desire for Signs
38 Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to Him, “Teacher, we want to see a sign (attesting miracle) from You [proving that You are what You claim to be].” 39 But He replied and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation [that is morally unfaithful to God] craves and demands a [miraculous] sign; but no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah; 40 for just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the sea monster, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. 41 The men of Nineveh will stand up [as witnesses] at the judgment against this generation, and will condemn it because they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and now, something greater than Jonah is here. 42 The Queen of the South (Sheba) will stand up [as a witness] at the judgment against this generation, and will condemn it because she came from the ends of the earth to listen to the wisdom of Solomon; and now, something greater than Solomon is here.
43 “Now when the unclean spirit has gone out of a man, it roams through waterless (dry, arid) places in search of rest, but it does not find it. 44 Then it says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when it arrives, it finds the place unoccupied, swept, and put in order. 45 Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and make their home there. And the last condition of that man becomes worse than the first. So will it also be with this wicked generation.”
46 While He was still talking to the crowds, it happened that His mother and brothers stood outside, asking to speak to Him. 47 Someone said to Him, “Look! Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside asking to speak to You.” 48 But Jesus replied to the one who told Him, “Who is My mother and who are My brothers?” 49 And stretching out His hand toward His disciples [and all His other followers], He said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! 50 For [j]whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven [by believing in Me, and following Me] is My brother and sister and mother.”
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