Leviticus 26-27 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
Blessings for Obeying the Lord
The Lord said:
26 I am the Lord your God! So don’t make or worship any sort of idols or images. 2 Respect the Sabbath and honor the place where I am worshiped, because I am the Lord.
3 Faithfully obey my laws, 4 and I will send rain to make your crops grow and your trees produce fruit. 5 Your harvest of grain and grapes will be so abundant, that you won’t know what to do with it all. You will eat and be satisfied, and you will live in safety. 6 I will bless your country with peace, and you will rest without fear. I will wipe out the dangerous animals and protect you from enemy attacks. 7 You will chase and destroy your enemies, 8 even if there are only five of you and a hundred of them, or only a hundred of you and ten thousand of them. 9 I will treat you with such kindness that your nation will grow strong, and I will also keep my promises to you. 10 Your barns will overflow with grain each year. 11 I will live among you and never again look on you with disgust. 12 I will walk with you—I will be your God, and you will be my people. 13 I am the Lord your God, and I rescued you from Egypt, so that you would never again be slaves. I have set you free; now walk with your heads held high.
Punishment for Disobeying the Lord
The Lord said:
14-15 If you disobey me and my laws, and if you break our agreement, 16 I will punish you terribly, and you will be ruined. You will be struck with incurable diseases and with fever that leads to blindness and depression. Your enemies will eat the crops you plant, 17 and I will turn from you and let you be destroyed by your attackers. You will even run at the very rumor of attack. 18 Then, if you still refuse to obey me, I will punish you seven times for each of your sins, 19 until your pride is completely crushed. I will hold back the rain, so the sky above you will be like iron, and the ground beneath your feet will be like copper. 20 All of your hard work will be for nothing—and there will be no harvest of grain or fruit.
21 If you keep rebelling against me, I’ll punish you seven times worse, just as your sins deserve! 22 I’ll send wild animals to attack you, and they will gobble down your children and livestock. So few of you will be left that your roads will be deserted.
23 If you remain my enemies after this, 24 I’ll remain your enemy and punish you even worse. 25 War will break out because you broke our agreement, and if you escape to your walled cities, I’ll punish you with horrible diseases, and you will be captured by your enemies. 26 You will have such a shortage of bread, that ten women will be able to bake their bread in the same oven. Each of you will get only a few crumbs, and you will go hungry.
27 Then if you don’t stop rebelling, 28 I’ll really get furious and punish you terribly for your sins! 29 In fact, you will be so desperate for food that you will eat your own children. 30 I’ll destroy your shrines and tear down your incense altars, leaving your dead bodies piled on top of your idols. And you will be disgusting to me. 31 I’ll wipe out your towns and your places of worship and will no longer be pleased with the smell of your sacrifices. 32 Your land will become so desolate that even your enemies who settle there will be shocked when they see it. 33 After I destroy your towns and ruin your land with war, I’ll scatter you among the nations.
34-35 While you are prisoners in foreign lands, your own land will enjoy years of rest and refreshment, as it should have done each seventh year when you lived there. 36-37 In the land of your enemies, you will tremble at the rustle of a leaf, as though it were a sword. And you will become so weak that you will stumble and fall over each other, even when no one is chasing you. 38 Many of you will die in foreign lands, 39 and others of you will waste away in sorrow as the result of your sins and the sins of your ancestors.
40-41 Then suppose you realize that I turned against you and brought you to the land of your enemies because both you and your ancestors had stubbornly sinned against me. If you humbly confess what you have done and start living right, 42 I’ll keep the promise I made to your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. I will bless your land 43 and let it rest during the time that you are in a foreign country, paying for your rebellion against me and my laws.
44 No matter what you have done, I am still the Lord your God, and I will never completely reject you or become absolutely disgusted with you there in the land of your enemies. 45 While nations watched, I rescued your ancestors from Egypt so that I would be their God. Yes, I am your Lord, and I will never forget our agreement.
46 Moses was on Mount Sinai when the Lord gave him these laws and teachings for the people of Israel.
Making Promises to the Lord
27 The Lord told Moses 2 to say to the community of Israel:
If you ever want to free someone who has been promised to me, 3-7 you may do so by paying the following amounts, weighed according to the official standards:
fifty pieces of silver for men ages twenty to sixty,
8 If you have promised to give someone to me and can’t afford to pay the full amount for that person’s release, you will be taken to a priest, and he will decide how much you can afford.
9 If you promise to sacrifice an animal to me, it becomes holy, and there is no way you can set it free. 10 If you try to substitute any other animal, no matter how good, for the one you promised, they will both become holy and must be sacrificed. 11 Donkeys are unfit for sacrifice, so if you promise me a donkey,[a] you must bring it to the priest, 12 and let him determine its value. 13 But if you want to buy it back, you must pay an additional twenty percent.
14 If you promise a house to me, a priest will set the price, whatever the condition of the house. 15 But if you decide to buy it back, you must pay an additional twenty percent.
16 If you promise part of your family’s land to me, its value must be determined by the bushels of seed needed to plant the land, and the rate will be ten pieces of silver for every bushel of seed. 17 If this promise is made in the Year of Celebration,[b] the land will be valued at the full price. 18 But any time after that, the price will be figured according to the number of years before the next Year of Celebration. 19 If you decide to buy back the land, you must pay the price plus an additional twenty percent, 20 but you cannot buy it back once someone else has bought it. 21 When the Year of Celebration comes, the land becomes holy because it belongs to me, and it will be given to the priests.
22 If you promise me a field that you have bought, 23 its value will be decided by a priest, according to the number of years before the next Year of Celebration, and the money you pay will be mine. 24 However, on the next Year of Celebration, the land will go back to the family of its original owner. 25 Every price will be set by the official standards.
The Lord said:
26 All first-born animals of your flocks and herds are already mine, and so you cannot promise any of them to me. 27 If you promise me a donkey,[c] you may buy it back by adding an additional twenty percent to its value. If you don’t buy it back, it can be sold to someone else for whatever a priest has said it is worth.
28 Anything that you completely dedicate to me must be completely destroyed.[d] It cannot be bought back or sold. Every person, animal, and piece of property that you dedicate completely is only for me. 29 In fact, any humans who have been promised to me in this way must be put to death.
30 Ten percent of everything you harvest is holy and belongs to me, whether it grows in your fields or on your fruit trees. 31 If you want to buy back this part of your harvest, you may do so by paying what it is worth plus an additional twenty percent.
32 When you count your flocks and herds, one out of ten of every newborn animal[e] is holy and belongs to me, 33 no matter how good or bad it is. If you substitute one animal for another, both of them become holy, and neither can be bought back.
34 Moses was on Mount Sinai when the Lord gave him these laws for the people of Israel.
Mark 2 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
Jesus Heals a Crippled Man
2 Jesus went back to Capernaum, and a few days later people heard that he was at home.[a] 2 Then so many of them came to the house that there wasn’t even standing room left in front of the door.
Jesus was still teaching 3 when four people came up, carrying a crippled man on a mat. 4 But because of the crowd, they could not get him to Jesus. So they made a hole in the roof[b] above him and let the man down in front of everyone.
5 When Jesus saw how much faith they had, he said to the crippled man, “My friend, your sins are forgiven.”
6 Some of the teachers of the Law of Moses were sitting there. They started wondering, 7 “Why would he say such a thing? He must think he is God! Only God can forgive sins.”
8 Right away, Jesus knew what they were thinking, and he said, “Why are you thinking such things? 9 Is it easier for me to tell this crippled man that his sins are forgiven or to tell him to get up and pick up his mat and go on home? 10 I will show you that the Son of Man has the right to forgive sins here on earth.” So Jesus said to the man, 11 “Get up! Pick up your mat and go on home.”
12 The man got right up. He picked up his mat and went out while everyone watched in amazement. They praised God and said, “We have never seen anything like this!”
Jesus Chooses Levi
13 Once again, Jesus went to the shore of Lake Galilee. A large crowd gathered around him, and he taught them. 14 As he walked along, he saw Levi, the son of Alphaeus. Levi was sitting at the place for paying taxes, and Jesus said to him, “Come with me!” So he got up and went with Jesus.
16 Some of the teachers of the Law of Moses were Pharisees, and they saw that Jesus was eating with sinners and tax collectors. So they asked his disciples, “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?”
17 Jesus heard them and answered, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor, but sick people do. I didn’t come to invite good people to be my followers. I came to invite sinners.”
People Ask about Going without Eating
18 The followers of John the Baptist and the Pharisees often went without eating.[e] Some people came and asked Jesus, “Why do the followers of John and those of the Pharisees often go without eating, while your disciples never do?”
19 Jesus answered:
The friends of a bridegroom don’t go without eating while he is still with them. 20 But the time will come when he will be taken from them. Then they will go without eating.
21 No one patches old clothes by sewing on a piece of new cloth. The new piece would shrink and tear a bigger hole.
22 No one pours new wine into old wineskins. The wine would swell and burst the old skins.[f] Then the wine would be lost, and the skins would be ruined. New wine must be put into new wineskins.
A Question about the Sabbath
23 One Sabbath Jesus and his disciples were walking through some wheat fields. His disciples were picking grains of wheat as they went along.[g] 24 Some Pharisees asked Jesus, “Why are your disciples picking grain on the Sabbath? They are not supposed to do that!”
25 Jesus answered, “Haven’t you read what David did when he and his followers were hungry and in need? 26 It was during the time of Abiathar the high priest. David went into the house of God and ate the sacred loaves of bread that only priests are allowed to eat. He also gave some to his followers.”
27 Jesus finished by saying, “People were not made for the good of the Sabbath. The Sabbath was made for the good of people. 28 So the Son of Man is Lord over the Sabbath.”
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