Mark 11 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
Jesus Enters Jerusalem
11 Jesus and his disciples reached Bethphage and Bethany near the Mount of Olives. When they were getting close to Jerusalem, Jesus sent two of them on ahead. 2 He told them, “Go into the next village. As soon as you enter it, you will find a young donkey that has never been ridden. Untie the donkey and bring it here. 3 If anyone asks why you are doing that, say, ‘The Lord[a] needs it and will soon bring it back.’”
4 The disciples left and found the donkey tied near a door that faced the street. While they were untying it, 5 some of the people standing there asked, “Why are you untying the donkey?” 6 They told them what Jesus had said, and the people let them take it.
7 The disciples led the donkey to Jesus. They put some of their clothes on its back, and Jesus got on. 8 Many people spread clothes on the road, while others went to cut branches from the fields.[b]
9 In front of Jesus and behind him, people went along shouting,
11 After Jesus had gone to Jerusalem, he went into the temple and looked around at everything. But since it was already late in the day, he went back to Bethany with the twelve disciples.
Jesus Puts a Curse on a Fig Tree
12 When Jesus and his disciples left Bethany the next morning, he was hungry. 13 From a distance Jesus saw a fig tree covered with leaves, and he went to see if there were any figs on the tree. But there were not any, because it wasn’t the season for figs. 14 So Jesus said to the tree, “Never again will anyone eat fruit from this tree!” The disciples heard him say this.
Jesus in the Temple
15 After Jesus and his disciples reached Jerusalem, he went into the temple and began chasing out everyone who was selling and buying. He turned over the tables of the moneychangers and the benches of those who were selling doves. 16 Jesus would not let anyone carry things through the temple. 17 Then he taught the people and said, “The Scriptures say, ‘My house should be called a place of worship for all nations.’ But you have made it a place where robbers hide!”
18 The chief priests and the teachers of the Law of Moses heard what Jesus said, and they started looking for a way to kill him. They were afraid of him, because the crowds were completely amazed at his teaching.
19 That evening, Jesus and the disciples went outside the city.
A Lesson from the Fig Tree
20 As the disciples walked past the fig tree the next morning, they noticed that it was completely dried up, roots and all. 21 Peter remembered what Jesus had said to the tree. Then Peter said, “Teacher, look! The tree you put a curse on has dried up.”
22 Jesus told his disciples:
Have faith in God! 23 If you have faith in God and don’t doubt, you can tell this mountain to get up and jump into the sea, and it will. 24 Everything you ask for in prayer will be yours, if you only have faith.
25-26 Whenever you stand up to pray, you must forgive what others have done to you. Then your Father in heaven will forgive your sins.[d]
A Question about Jesus' Authority
27 Jesus and his disciples returned to Jerusalem. And as he was walking through the temple, the chief priests, the nation’s leaders, and the teachers of the Law of Moses came over to him. 28 They asked, “What right do you have to do these things? Who gave you this authority?”
29 Jesus answered, “I have just one question to ask you. If you answer it, I will tell you where I got the right to do these things. 30 Who gave John the right to baptize? Was it God in heaven or merely some human being?”
31 They thought it over and said to each other, “We can’t say that God gave John this right. Jesus will ask us why we didn’t believe John. 32 On the other hand, these people think that John was a prophet. So we can’t say that it was merely some human who gave John the right to baptize.”
They were afraid of the crowd 33 and told Jesus, “We don’t know.”
Jesus replied, “Then I won’t tell you who gave me the right to do what I do.”
John 12 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
12 Six days before Passover Jesus went back to Bethany, where he had raised Lazarus from death. 2 A meal had been prepared for Jesus. Martha was doing the serving, and Lazarus himself was there.
3 Mary took a very expensive bottle of perfume[a] and poured it on Jesus' feet. She wiped them with her hair, and the sweet smell of the perfume filled the house.
4 A disciple named Judas Iscariot[b] was there. He was the one who was going to betray Jesus, and he asked, 5 “Why wasn’t this perfume sold for three hundred silver coins and the money given to the poor?” 6 Judas did not really care about the poor. He asked this because he carried the moneybag and sometimes would steal from it.
7 Jesus replied, “Leave her alone! She has kept this perfume for the day of my burial. 8 You will always have the poor with you, but you won’t always have me.”
A Plot To Kill Lazarus
9 A lot of people came when they heard that Jesus was there. They also wanted to see Lazarus, because Jesus had raised him from death. 10 So the chief priests made plans to kill Lazarus. 11 He was the reason that many of the Jewish leaders were turning from them and putting their faith in Jesus.
Jesus Enters Jerusalem
12 The next day a large crowd was in Jerusalem for Passover. When they heard that Jesus was coming for the festival, 13 they took palm branches and went out to greet him.[c] They shouted,
14 Jesus found a donkey and rode on it, just as the Scriptures say,
15 “People of Jerusalem,
16 At first, Jesus' disciples did not understand. But after he had been given his glory,[e] they remembered all this. Everything had happened exactly as the Scriptures said it would.
17-18 A crowd had come to meet Jesus because they had seen him call Lazarus out of the tomb. They kept talking about him and this miracle.[f] 19 But the Pharisees said to each other, “There is nothing that can be done! Everyone in the world is following Jesus.”
Some Greeks Want To Meet Jesus
20 Some Greeks[g] had gone to Jerusalem to worship during Passover. 21 Philip from Bethsaida in Galilee was there too. So they went to him and said, “Sir, we would like to meet Jesus.” 22 Philip told Andrew. Then the two of them went to Jesus and told him.
The Son of Man Must Be Lifted Up
23 Jesus said:
The time has come for the Son of Man to be given his glory.[h] 24 I tell you for certain that a grain of wheat that falls on the ground will never be more than one grain unless it dies. But if it dies, it will produce lots of wheat. 25 If you love your life, you will lose it. If you give it up in this world, you will be given eternal life. 26 If you serve me, you must go with me. My servants will be with me wherever I am. If you serve me, my Father will honor you.
27 Now I am deeply troubled, and I don’t know what to say. But I must not ask my Father to keep me from this time of suffering. In fact, I came into the world to suffer. 28 So Father, bring glory to yourself.
A voice from heaven then said, “I have already brought glory to myself, and I will do it again!” 29 When the crowd heard the voice, some of them thought it was thunder. Others thought an angel had spoken to Jesus.
30 Then Jesus told the crowd, “That voice spoke to help you, not me. 31 This world’s people are now being judged, and the ruler of this world[i] is already being thrown out! 32 If I am lifted up above the earth, I will make everyone want to come to me.” 33 Jesus was talking about the way he would be put to death.
34 The crowd said to Jesus, “The Scriptures teach that the Messiah will live forever. How can you say that the Son of Man must be lifted up? Who is this Son of Man?”
35 Jesus answered, “The light will be with you for only a little longer. Walk in the light while you can. Then you won’t be caught walking blindly in the dark. 36 Have faith in the light while it is with you, and you will be children of the light.”
The People Refuse To Have Faith in Jesus
After Jesus had said these things, he left and went into hiding. 37 He had worked a lot of miracles[j] among the people, but they were still not willing to have faith in him. 38 This happened so that what the prophet Isaiah had said would come true,
“Lord, who has believed
39 The people could not have faith in Jesus, because Isaiah had also said,
40 “The Lord has blinded
41 Isaiah said this, because he saw the glory of Jesus and spoke about him.[k] 42 Even then, many of the leaders put their faith in Jesus, but they did not tell anyone about it. The Pharisees had already given orders for the people not to have anything to do with anyone who had faith in Jesus. 43 And besides, the leaders liked praise from others more than they liked praise from God.
Jesus Came To Save the World
44 In a loud voice Jesus said:
Everyone who has faith in me also has faith in the one who sent me. 45 And everyone who has seen me has seen the one who sent me. 46 I am the light that has come into the world. No one who has faith in me will stay in the dark.
47 I am not the one who will judge those who refuse to obey my teachings. I came to save the people of this world, not to be their judge. 48 But everyone who rejects me and my teachings will be judged on the last day[l] by what I have said. 49 I don’t speak on my own. I say only what the Father who sent me has told me to say. 50 I know that his commands will bring eternal life. That is why I tell you exactly what the Father has told me.
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