The Temptation of Jesus
4 Then Jesus was led by the [Holy] Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.(A) 2 After He had gone without food for forty days and forty nights, He became hungry.(B) 3 And the tempter came and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” 4 But Jesus replied, “It is written and forever remains written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes out of the mouth of God.’”(C)
5 Then the devil took Him into the holy city [Jerusalem] and placed Him on the pinnacle (highest point) of the temple.(D) 6 And he said [mockingly] to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down; for it is written,
‘He will command His angels concerning You [to serve, care for, protect and watch over You]’;
‘They will lift you up on their hands,
So that You will not strike Your foot against a stone.’”(E)
7 Jesus said to him, “On the other hand, it is written and forever remains written, ‘You shall not test the Lord your God.’”(F)
8 Again, the devil took Him up on a very high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and the glory [splendor, magnificence, and excellence] of them; 9 and he said to Him, “All these things I will give You, if You fall down and worship me.” 10 Then Jesus said to him, “Go away, Satan! For it is written and forever remains written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only.’”(G) 11 Then the devil left Him; and angels came and ministered to Him [bringing Him food and serving Him].
Jesus Begins His Ministry
12 Now when Jesus heard that John [the Baptist] had been arrested and put in prison, He left for Galilee. 13 And leaving Nazareth, He went and settled in Capernaum, which is by the sea, in the country of Zebulun and Naphtali.(H) 14 This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah:
“The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali,
By the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee [in the district] of the Gentiles—
“The people who were sitting (living) in [spiritual] darkness have seen a great Light,
And for those who were sitting (living) in the land and shadow of [spiritual and moral] death,
Upon them a Light has dawned.”(I)
17 From that time Jesus began to preach and say, “[a]Repent [change your inner self—your old way of thinking, regret past sins, live your life in a way that proves repentance; seek God’s purpose for your life], for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
The First Disciples
18 As Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, He noticed two brothers, Simon who was called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. 19 And He said to them, “[b]Follow Me [as My disciples, accepting Me as your Master and Teacher and walking the same path of life that I walk], and I will make you fishers of men.” 20 Immediately they left their nets and followed Him [becoming His disciples, believing and trusting in Him and following His example]. 21 And going on [further] from there He noticed two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee, and his brother John, in the boat with their father [c]Zebedee, mending their nets; and He called them [to follow Him as His disciples]. 22 Immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed Him [becoming His disciples, believing and trusting in Him and following His example].
Ministry in Galilee
23 And He went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and preaching the good news (gospel) of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness among the people [demonstrating and revealing that He was indeed the promised Messiah].
24 So the news about Him spread throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all who were sick, those suffering with various diseases and pains, those under the power of demons, and epileptics, paralytics; and He healed them. 25 Large crowds followed Him from Galilee and the [d]Decapolis and Jerusalem and Judea and the other side of the Jordan.
- Matthew 4:17 Jesus’ public ministry began at this time and He was preaching the same message John the Baptist had proclaimed.
- Matthew 4:19 The concept of “follow” can represent three separate possibilities: in the early stages of His ministry, (1) walking with Him physically (literally), that is, merely being in His presence regardless of personal belief or commitment, (2) accepting and identifying with the salvation He offered; and later on, (3) being identified with Him by being subject to the scorn and rejection of unbelievers because of personal belief and commitment to Him.
- Matthew 4:21 Zebedee’s wife, Salome, is believed to be the sister of Jesus’ mother Mary.
- Matthew 4:25 The district of the ten Hellenistic (Greco-Roman) cities east of the Sea of Galilee.
The Devil Tempts Jesus
4 Now Jesus, full of [and in perfect communication with] the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness(A) 2 for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And He ate nothing during those days, and when they ended, He was hungry.(B) 3 Then the devil said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command this stone to turn into bread.” 4 Jesus replied to him, “It is written and forever remains written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone[a].’”(C)
5 Then he led Jesus up [to a high mountain] and displayed before Him all the kingdoms of the inhabited earth [and their magnificence] in the twinkling of an eye. 6 And the devil said to Him, “I will give You all this realm and its glory [its power, its renown]; because it has been handed over to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. 7 Therefore if You worship before me, it will all be Yours.” 8 Jesus replied to him, “It is written and forever remains written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and serve only Him.’”(D)
9 Then he led Jesus to Jerusalem and had Him stand on the pinnacle (highest point) of the temple, and said [mockingly] to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down from here; 10 for it is written and forever remains written,
‘He will command His angels concerning You to guard and protect You,’
‘they will lift You up on their hands,
So that You do not strike Your foot against a stone.’”(E)
12 Jesus replied to him, “It is said [in Scripture], ‘you shall not tempt the Lord your God [to prove Himself to you].’”(F)
13 When the devil had finished every temptation, he [temporarily] left Him until a more opportune time.
Jesus’ Public Ministry
14 Then Jesus went back to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and the news about Him spread through the entire region. 15 And He began teaching in their synagogues and was praised and glorified and honored by all.
16 So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up; and as was His custom, He entered the synagogue on the Sabbath, and stood up to read. 17 The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written,(G)
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me (the Messiah),
Because He has anointed Me to preach the good news to the poor.
He has sent Me to announce release (pardon, forgiveness) to the captives,
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set free those who are oppressed (downtrodden, bruised, crushed by tragedy),
to proclaim the favorable year of the Lord [the day when salvation and the favor of God abound greatly].”(H)
20 Then He rolled up the scroll [having stopped in the middle of the verse], gave it back to the attendant and sat down [to teach]; and the eyes of all those in the synagogue were [attentively] fixed on Him. 21 He began speaking to them: “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing and in your presence.” 22 And [as He continued on] they all were speaking well of Him, and were in awe and were wondering about the words of grace which were coming from His lips; and they were saying, “Is this not Joseph’s son?” 23 So He said to them, “You will no doubt quote this proverb to Me, ‘Physician, heal Yourself! Whatever [miracles] that we heard were done [by You] in Capernaum, do here in Your hometown as well.’” 24 Then He said, “I assure you and most solemnly say to you, no prophet is welcome in his hometown. 25 But in truth I say to you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the sky was closed up for three years and six months, when a great famine came over all the land; 26 and yet Elijah was not sent [by the Lord] to a single one of them, but only to Zarephath in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow.(I) 27 And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet; and not one of them was cleansed [by being healed] except Naaman the Syrian.”(J) 28 As they heard these things [about God’s grace to these two Gentiles], the people in the synagogue were filled with a great rage; 29 and they got up and drove Him out of the city, and led Him to the crest of the hill on which their city had been built, in order to hurl Him down the cliff. 30 But passing [miraculously] through the crowd, He went on His way.
31 Then He came down [from the hills of Nazareth] to Capernaum, a city of Galilee [on the shore of the sea], and He was teaching them on the Sabbath;(K) 32 and they were surprised [almost overwhelmed] at His teaching, because His message was [given] with authority and power and great ability. 33 There was a man in the synagogue who was possessed by the spirit of an unclean demon; and he cried out with a loud and terrible voice, 34 “Let us alone! [b]What business do we have [in common] with each other, Jesus of Nazareth? Have You come to destroy us? I know who You are—the Holy One of God!” 35 But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent (muzzled, gagged) and come out of him!” And when the demon had thrown the man down among them, he came out of him without injuring him in any way. 36 They were all astonished and in awe, and began saying to one another, “What is this message? For with authority and power He commands the unclean spirits and they come out!” 37 And the news about Him spread into every place in the surrounding district (Galilee).
Many Are Healed
38 Then Jesus got up and left the synagogue and went to Simon’s (Peter’s) house. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked Him to help her.(L) 39 Standing over her, He rebuked the fever, and it left her; and immediately she got up and began serving them [as her guests].
40 While the sun was setting [marking the end of the Sabbath day], all those who had any who were sick with various diseases brought them to Jesus; and laying His hands on each one of them, He was healing them [exhibiting His authority as Messiah].(M) 41 Demons also were coming out of many people, shouting, “You are the Son of God!” But He rebuked them and would not allow them to speak, because they knew that He was the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed).
42 When daybreak came, Jesus left [Simon Peter’s house] and went to a secluded place; and the crowds were searching for Him, and [they] came to Him and tried to keep Him from leaving them. 43 But He said, “I must preach [the good news of] the kingdom of God to the other cities also, because I was sent for this purpose.”
44 So He continued preaching in the synagogues of Judea [the country of the Jews, including Galilee].
The First Disciples
5 Now it happened that while Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret (Sea of Galilee), with the people crowding all around Him and listening to the word of God; 2 that He saw two boats lying at the edge of the lake, but the fishermen had gotten out of them and were washing their nets. 3 He got into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, and asked him to put out a little distance from the shore. And He sat down and began teaching the crowds from the boat. 4 When He had finished speaking, He said to Simon [Peter], “Put out into the deep water and lower your nets for a catch [of fish].” 5 Simon replied, “Master, we worked hard all night [to the point of exhaustion] and caught nothing [in our nets], but at Your word I will [do as you say and] lower the nets [again].” 6 When they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their nets were [at the point of] breaking; 7 so they signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both of the boats [with fish], so that they began to sink. 8 But when Simon Peter saw this, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Go away from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!” 9 For he and all his companions were completely astounded at the catch of fish which they had taken; 10 and so were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon [Peter]. Jesus said to Simon, “Have no fear; from now on you will be catching men!” 11 After they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and [c]followed Him [becoming His disciples, believing and trusting in Him and following His example].
The Leper and the Paralytic
12 While Jesus was in one of the cities, there came a man covered with [an advanced case of] leprosy; and when he saw Jesus, he fell on his face and begged Him, saying, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean and well.”(N) 13 And Jesus reached out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing; be cleansed.” And immediately the leprosy left him. 14 Jesus ordered him to tell no one [that he might happen to meet], “But go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your purification, just as Moses commanded, as a testimony (witness) to them [that this is a work of Messiah].”(O) 15 But the news about Him was spreading farther, and large crowds kept gathering to hear Him and to be healed of their illnesses. 16 But Jesus Himself would often slip away to the wilderness and pray [in seclusion].
17 One day as He was teaching, there were Pharisees and teachers of the Law sitting there who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was present with Him to heal. 18 Some men came carrying on a stretcher a man who was paralyzed, and they tried to bring him in and lay him down in front of Jesus.(P) 19 But finding no way to bring him in because of the crowd, they went up on the [d]roof [and removed some tiles to make an opening] and lowered him through the tiles with his stretcher, into the middle of the crowd, in front of Jesus. 20 When Jesus saw their [active] faith [springing from confidence in Him], He said, “Man, your sins are forgiven.” 21 The scribes and the Pharisees began to consider and question [the implications of what He had said], saying, “Who is this man who speaks blasphemies [by claiming the rights and prerogatives of God]? Who can forgive sins [that is, remove guilt, nullify sin’s penalty, and assign righteousness] except God alone?” 22 But Jesus, knowing their [hostile] thoughts, answered them, “Why are you questioning [these things] in your hearts? 23 Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? 24 But, in order that you may know that the Son of Man (the Messiah) has authority and power on earth to forgive sins”—He said to the paralyzed man, “I say to you, get up, pick up your stretcher and go home.” 25 He immediately stood up before them, picked up his stretcher, and went home glorifying and praising God. 26 They were all astonished, and they began glorifying God; and they were filled with [reverential] fear and kept saying, “We have seen wonderful and incredible things today!”
Call of Levi (Matthew)
27 After this Jesus went out and noticed a tax collector named Levi (Matthew) sitting at the tax booth; and He said to him, “Follow Me [as My disciple, accepting Me as your Master and Teacher and walking the same path of life that I walk].”(Q) 28 And he left everything behind and got up and began to follow Jesus [as His disciple].
29 Levi (Matthew) gave a great banquet for Him at his house; and there was a large crowd of tax collectors and others who were reclining at the table with them. 30 The Pharisees and their scribes [seeing those with whom He was associating] began murmuring in discontent to His disciples, asking, “Why are you eating and drinking with the tax collectors and sinners [including non-observant Jews]?” 31 And Jesus replied to them, “It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but [only] those who are sick. 32 I did not come to call the [self-proclaimed] righteous [who see no need to repent], but sinners to repentance [to change their old way of thinking, to turn from sin and to seek God and His righteousness].”
33 Then they said to Him, “The disciples of John [the Baptist] often practice fasting and offer prayers [of special petition], and so do the disciples of the Pharisees; but Yours eat and drink.” 34 Jesus said to them, “Can you make the wedding guests of the bridegroom fast while he is with them? 35 But days [for mourning] will come when the bridegroom is [forcefully] taken away from them. They will fast in those days.” 36 He also told them a parable: “No one tears a piece of cloth from a new garment and puts it on an old one; otherwise he will both tear the new, and the piece from the new will not match the old. 37 And no one puts new wine into old [e]wineskins; otherwise the new [fermenting] wine will [expand and] burst the skins and it will be spilled out, and the skins will be ruined. 38 But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. 39 And no one, after drinking old wine, wishes for new; for he says, ‘The old is fine.’”
- Luke 4:4 Late mss add “but by every word of God.”
- Luke 4:34 Lit What to me and to you; cf note Matt 8:29.
- Luke 5:11 The concept of “follow” can represent three separate possibilities: (1) walking with Him (literally), that is merely being in His presence regardless of personal belief or commitment; (2) accepting and identifying with the salvation He offered; and (3) being identified with Him by being subject to the scorn and rejection of unbelievers because of personal belief and commitment to Him.
- Luke 5:19 The roof of a typical home was composed of clay tiles which were laid on a mat of branches and grass supported by wooden beams.
- Luke 5:37 See note Matt 9:17.
15 John testified [repeatedly] about Him and [a]has cried out [testifying officially for the record, with validity and relevance], “This was He of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me [b]has a higher rank than I and has priority over me, for He existed before me.’” 16 For out of His fullness [the superabundance of His grace and truth] we have all received grace upon grace [spiritual blessing upon spiritual blessing, favor upon favor, and gift heaped upon gift]. 17 For the Law was given through Moses, but grace [the unearned, undeserved favor of God] and truth came through Jesus Christ.(A) 18 No one has seen God [His essence, His divine nature] at any time; the [One and] only begotten God [that is, the unique Son] who is in the intimate presence of the Father, He has explained Him [and interpreted and revealed the awesome wonder of the Father].(B)
The Testimony of John
19 This is the testimony of John [the Baptist] when the Jews sent priests and Levites to him from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?” 20 And he confessed [truthfully] and did not deny [that he was only a man], but acknowledged, “I am not the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed)!” 21 They asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” And he said, “I am not.” “Are you the [promised] Prophet?” And he answered, “No.”(C) 22 Then they said to him, “Who are you? Tell us, so that we may give an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” 23 He said, “I am the voice of one shouting in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.”(D)
24 Now they had been sent from the Pharisees. 25 They asked him, “Why then are you baptizing, if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?” 26 John answered them, “I baptize [only] [c]in water, but among you there stands One whom you do not recognize and of whom you know nothing.(E) 27 It is He [the preeminent One] who comes after me, the [d]strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie [even as His slave].” 28 These things occurred in Bethany across the Jordan [at the Jordan River crossing], where John was baptizing.
29 The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, “Look! The Lamb of God [e]who takes away the sin of the world!(F) 30 This is He on behalf of whom I said, ‘After me comes a Man who has a higher rank than I and has priority over me, for He existed before me.’ 31 [f]I did not recognize Him [as the Messiah]; but I came baptizing [g]in water so that He would be [publicly] revealed to Israel.” 32 John gave [further] evidence [testifying officially for the record, with validity and relevance], saying, “I have seen the [h]Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven, and He remained upon Him.(G) 33 I did not recognize Him [as the Messiah], but He who sent me to baptize [i]in water said to me, ‘He upon whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this One is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ 34 I myself have [actually] seen [that happen], and my testimony is that this is the Son of God!”
Jesus’ Public Ministry, First Converts
35 Again the next day John was standing with two of his disciples, 36 and he looked at Jesus as He walked along, and said, “Look! The Lamb of God!” 37 The two disciples heard him say this, and they [j]followed Jesus. 38 And Jesus turned and saw them following Him, and asked them, “What do you want?” They answered Him, “Rabbi (which translated means Teacher), where are You staying?” 39 He said to them, “Come, and you will see.” So they went [with Him] and saw where He was staying; and they stayed with Him that day, for it was about the [k]tenth hour. 40 One of the two who heard what John said and [as a result] followed Jesus was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. 41 He first looked for and found his own brother Simon and told him, “We have found the [l]Messiah” (which translated means the Christ). 42 Andrew brought Simon to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon the son of John. You shall be called Cephas (which is translated [m]Peter).”
43 The next day Jesus decided to go into Galilee, and He found Philip and said to him, “Follow Me [as My disciple, accepting Me as your Master and Teacher, and walking the same path of life that I walk].” 44 Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. 45 Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the One Moses in the Law and also the Prophets wrote about—Jesus from Nazareth, the son of Joseph [according to public record].” 46 Nathanael answered him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip replied, “Come and see.” 47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward Him, and said of him, “Here is an Israelite indeed [a true descendant of Jacob], in whom there is no guile nor deceit nor duplicity!” 48 Nathanael said to Jesus, “How do You know [these things about] me?” Jesus answered, “Before Philip called you, when you were still under the fig tree, I saw you.” 49 Nathanael answered, “Rabbi (Teacher), You are the Son of God; You are the King of Israel.” 50 Jesus replied, “Because I said to you that I saw you under the fig tree, do you believe [in Me]? You will see greater things than this.” 51 Then He said to him, “I assure you and most solemnly say to you, you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man [the bridge between heaven and earth].”(H)Read full chapter
- John 1:15 Here John the writer uses the Greek perfect tense (“has cried out”), emphasizing the truth and continuing importance of John the Baptist’s testimony.
- John 1:15 Lit has become before (in front of) me, because He was first of me. The Greek is difficult because John the Baptist was making a word-play on the adverbs/adjective “after” (or “behind”), “before,” and “first.” The playful wording assumes the form of a riddle which, like some of Jesus’ parables, conceals the speaker’s meaning from those who are hostile toward him and have neither the patience nor the spiritual inclination to learn from him.
- John 1:26 The Greek here can be translated in, with or by.
- John 1:27 During this era it was customary for a household servant to remove a guest’s sandals and wash the dust from his feet. John is saying that he is not worthy even to remove Christ’s sandal, let alone to touch His feet.
- John 1:29 John is referring to the fulfillment of the need for the OT Passover lambs which was now fulfilled in Christ’s sacrifice, the ultimate and final sacrifice for sins.
- John 1:31 John the Baptist and Jesus were related through their mothers, Elizabeth and Mary, but He was unknown as the Messiah until God revealed it to John at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry.
- John 1:31 The Greek here can be translated in, with or by.
- John 1:32 The descent of the Holy Spirit identified Jesus in His humanity for His ministry as the Messiah.
- John 1:33 The Greek here can be translated in, with or by.
- John 1:37 The concept of “follow” can represent three separate possibilities: in the early stages of His ministry (1) walking with Him physically (literally), that is merely being in His presence regardless of personal belief or commitment; (2) accepting and identifying with the salvation He offered; and later on (3) being identified with Him by being subject to the scorn and rejection of unbelievers because of personal belief and commitment to Him.
- John 1:39 The Romans reckoned time from midnight, so in Roman time the tenth hour would be 10:00 a.m. The Jews reckoned daytime from sunrise (about 6:00 a.m.), so in their system the tenth hour would be 4:00 p.m. Here, either time is possible, though the Roman reckoning may be more likely because if it were 4:00 p.m. the disciples might have felt compelled to go home before evening set in.
- John 1:41 The words “Messiah” and “Christ” are not personal names, but titles derived respectively from Hebrew and Greek verbs meaning “to anoint.”
- John 1:42 I.e. rock or stone in Greek.