Matthew 4 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
Jesus and the Devil
4 The Holy Spirit led Jesus into the desert, so that the devil could test him. 2 After Jesus had gone without eating[a] for forty days and nights, he was very hungry. 3 Then the devil came to him and said, “If you are God’s Son, tell these stones to turn into bread.”
4 Jesus answered, “The Scriptures say:
‘No one can live only on food.
5 Next, the devil took Jesus to the holy city and had him stand on the highest part of the temple. 6 The devil said, “If you are God’s Son, jump off. The Scriptures say:
‘God will give his angels
7 Jesus answered, “The Scriptures also say, ‘Don’t try to test the Lord your God!’”
8 Finally, the devil took Jesus up on a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms on earth and their power. 9 The devil said to him, “I will give all this to you, if you will bow down and worship me.”
10 Jesus answered, “Go away Satan! The Scriptures say:
‘Worship the Lord your God
11 Then the devil left Jesus, and angels came to help him.
Jesus Begins His Work
12 When Jesus heard that John had been put in prison, he went to Galilee. 13 But instead of staying in Nazareth, Jesus moved to Capernaum. This town was beside Lake Galilee in the territory of Zebulun and Naphtali.[b] 14 So God’s promise came true, just as the prophet Isaiah had said,
15 “Listen, lands of Zebulun
17 Then Jesus started preaching, “Turn back to God! The kingdom of heaven will soon be here.”[c]
Jesus Chooses Four Fishermen
18 While Jesus was walking along the shore of Lake Galilee, he saw two brothers. One was Simon, also known as Peter, and the other was Andrew. They were fishermen, and they were casting their net into the lake. 19 Jesus said to them, “Come with me! I will teach you how to bring in people instead of fish.” 20 Right then the two brothers dropped their nets and went with him.
21 Jesus walked on until he saw James and John, the sons of Zebedee. They were in a boat with their father, mending their nets. Jesus asked them to come with him too. 22 Right away they left the boat and their father and went with Jesus.
Jesus Teaches, Preaches, and Heals
23 Jesus went all over Galilee, teaching in the Jewish meeting places and preaching the good news about God’s kingdom. He also healed every kind of disease and sickness. 24 News about him spread all over Syria, and people with every kind of sickness or disease were brought to him. Some of them had a lot of demons in them, others were thought to be crazy,[d] and still others could not walk. But Jesus healed them all.
25 Large crowds followed Jesus from Galilee and the region around the ten cities known as Decapolis.[e] They also came from Jerusalem, Judea, and from across the Jordan River.
Luke 4-5 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
Jesus and the Devil
4 When Jesus returned from the Jordan River, the power of the Holy Spirit was with him, and the Spirit led him into the desert. 2 For forty days Jesus was tested by the devil, and during that time he went without eating.[a] When it was all over, he was hungry.
3 The devil said to Jesus, “If you are God’s Son, tell this stone to turn into bread.”
4 Jesus answered, “The Scriptures say, ‘No one can live only on food.’”
5 Then the devil led Jesus up to a high place and quickly showed him all the nations on earth. 6 The devil said, “I will give all this power and glory to you. It has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. 7 Just worship me, and you can have it all.”
8 Jesus answered, “The Scriptures say:
‘Worship the Lord your God
9 Finally, the devil took Jesus to Jerusalem and had him stand on top of the temple. The devil said, “If you are God’s Son, jump off. 10-11 The Scriptures say:
‘God will tell his angels
12 Jesus answered, “The Scriptures also say, ‘Don’t try to test the Lord your God!’”
13 After the devil had finished testing Jesus in every way possible, he left him for a while.
Jesus Begins His Work
14 Jesus returned to Galilee with the power of the Spirit. News about him spread everywhere. 15 He taught in the Jewish meeting places, and everyone praised him.
The People of Nazareth Turn against Jesus
16 Jesus went back to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and as usual he went to the meeting place on the Sabbath. When he stood up to read from the Scriptures, 17 he was given the book of Isaiah the prophet. He opened it and read,
18 “The Lord’s Spirit
20 Jesus closed the book, then handed it back to the man in charge and sat down. Everyone in the meeting place looked straight at Jesus.
21 Then Jesus said to them, “What you have just heard me read has come true today.”
22 All the people started talking about Jesus and were amazed at the wonderful things he said. They kept on asking, “Isn’t he Joseph’s son?”
23 Jesus answered:
You will certainly want to tell me this saying, “Doctor, first make yourself well.” You will tell me to do the same things here in my own hometown that you heard I did in Capernaum. 24 But you can be sure that no prophets are liked by the people of their own hometown.
25 Once during the time of Elijah there was no rain for three and a half years, and people everywhere were starving. There were many widows in Israel, 26 but Elijah was sent only to a widow in the town of Zarephath near the city of Sidon. 27 During the time of the prophet Elisha, many men in Israel had leprosy.[b] But no one was healed, except Naaman who lived in Syria.
28 When the people in the meeting place heard Jesus say this, they became so angry 29 that they got up and threw him out of town. They dragged him to the edge of the cliff on which the town was built, because they wanted to throw him down from there. 30 But Jesus slipped through the crowd and got away.
A Man with an Evil Spirit
31 Jesus went to the town of Capernaum in Galilee and taught the people on the Sabbath. 32 His teaching amazed them because he spoke with power. 33 There in the Jewish meeting place was a man with an evil spirit. He yelled out, 34 “Hey, Jesus of Nazareth, what do you want with us? Are you here to get rid of us? I know who you are! You are God’s Holy One.”
35 Jesus ordered the evil spirit to be quiet and come out. The demon threw the man to the ground in front of everyone and left without harming him.
36 They all were amazed and kept saying to each other, “What kind of teaching is this? He has power to order evil spirits out of people!” 37 News about Jesus spread all over that part of the country.
Jesus Heals Many People
38 Jesus left the meeting place and went to Simon’s home. When Jesus got there, he was told that Simon’s mother-in-law was sick with a high fever. 39 So Jesus went over to her and ordered the fever to go away. Right then she was able to get up and serve them a meal.
40 After the sun had set, people with all kinds of diseases were brought to Jesus. He put his hands on each one of them and healed them. 41 Demons went out of many people and shouted, “You are the Son of God!” But Jesus ordered the demons not to speak because they knew he was the Messiah.
42 The next morning Jesus went out to a place where he could be alone, and crowds came looking for him. When they found him, they tried to stop him from leaving. 43 But Jesus said, “People in other towns must hear the good news about God’s kingdom. That’s why I was sent.” 44 So he kept on preaching in the Jewish meeting places in Judea.[c]
Jesus Chooses His First Disciples
5 Jesus was standing on the shore of Lake Gennesaret,[d] teaching the people as they crowded around him to hear God’s message. 2 Near the shore he saw two boats left there by some fishermen who had gone to wash their nets. 3 Jesus got into the boat that belonged to Simon and asked him to row it out a little way from the shore. Then Jesus sat down[e] in the boat to teach the crowd.
4 When Jesus had finished speaking, he told Simon, “Row the boat out into the deep water and let your nets down to catch some fish.”
5 “Master,” Simon answered, “we have worked hard all night long and have not caught a thing. But if you tell me to, I will let the nets down.” 6 They did it and caught so many fish that their nets began ripping apart. 7 Then they signaled for their partners in the other boat to come and help them. The men came, and together they filled the two boats so full that they both began to sink.
8 When Simon Peter saw this happen, he knelt down in front of Jesus and said, “Lord, don’t come near me! I am a sinner.” 9 Peter and everyone with him were completely surprised at all the fish they had caught. 10 His partners James and John, the sons of Zebedee, were surprised too.
Jesus told Simon, “Don’t be afraid! From now on you will bring in people instead of fish.” 11 The men pulled their boats up on the shore. Then they left everything and went with Jesus.
Jesus Heals a Man
12 Jesus came to a town where there was a man who had leprosy.[f] When the man saw Jesus, he knelt down to the ground in front of Jesus and begged, “Lord, you have the power to make me well, if only you wanted to.”
13 Jesus put his hand on him and said, “I want to! Now you are well.” At once the man’s leprosy disappeared. 14 Jesus told him, “Don’t tell anyone about this, but go and show yourself to the priest. Offer a gift to the priest, just as Moses commanded, and everyone will know that you have been healed.”[g]
15 News about Jesus kept spreading. Large crowds came to listen to him teach and to be healed of their diseases. 16 But Jesus would often go to some place where he could be alone and pray.
Jesus Heals a Crippled Man
17 One day some Pharisees and experts in the Law of Moses sat listening to Jesus teach. They had come from every village in Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem.
God had given Jesus the power to heal the sick, 18 and some people came carrying a crippled man on a mat. They tried to take him inside the house and put him in front of Jesus. 19 But because of the crowd, they could not get him to Jesus. So they went up on the roof,[h] where they removed some tiles and let the mat down in the middle of the room.
20 When Jesus saw how much faith they had, he said to the crippled man, “My friend, your sins are forgiven.”
21 The Pharisees and the experts began arguing, “Jesus must think he is God! Only God can forgive sins.”
22 Jesus knew what they were thinking, and he said, “Why are you thinking that? 23 Is it easier for me to tell this crippled man that his sins are forgiven or to tell him to get up and walk? 24 But now you will see that the Son of Man has the right to forgive sins here on earth.” Jesus then said to the man, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk home.”
25 At once the man stood up in front of everyone. He picked up his mat and went home, giving thanks to God. 26 Everyone was amazed and praised God. What they saw surprised them, and they said, “We have seen a great miracle today!”
Jesus Chooses Levi
27 Later, Jesus went out and saw a tax collector[i] named Levi sitting at the place for paying taxes. Jesus said to him, “Come with me.” 28 Levi left everything and went with Jesus.
29 In his home Levi gave a big dinner for Jesus. Many tax collectors and other guests were also there.
30 The Pharisees and some of their teachers of the Law of Moses grumbled to Jesus' disciples, “Why do you eat and drink with those tax collectors and other sinners?”
31 Jesus answered, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor, but sick people do. 32 I didn’t come to invite good people to turn to God. I came to invite sinners.”
People Ask about Going without Eating
33 Some people said to Jesus, “John’s followers often pray and go without eating,[j] and so do the followers of the Pharisees. But your disciples never go without eating or drinking.”
34 Jesus told them, “The friends of a bridegroom don’t go without eating while he is still with them. 35 But the time will come when he will be taken from them. Then they will go without eating.”
36 Jesus then told them these sayings:
No one uses a new piece of cloth to patch old clothes. The patch would shrink and make the hole even bigger.
37 No one pours new wine into old wineskins. The new wine would swell and burst the old skins.[k] Then the wine would be lost, and the skins would be ruined. 38 New wine must be put only into new wineskins.
39 No one wants new wine after drinking old wine. They say, “The old wine is better.”
John 1:15-51 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
15 John spoke about him and shouted, “This is the one I told you would come! He is greater than I am, because he was alive before I was born.”
16 Because of all that the Son is, we have been given one blessing after another.[a] 17 The Law was given by Moses, but Jesus Christ brought us undeserved kindness and truth. 18 No one has ever seen God. The only Son, who is truly God and is closest to the Father, has shown us what God is like.
John the Baptist Tells about Jesus
19-20 The Jewish leaders in Jerusalem sent priests and temple helpers to ask John who he was. He told them plainly, “I am not the Messiah.” 21 Then when they asked him if he were Elijah, he said, “No, I am not!” And when they asked if he were the Prophet,[b] he also said “No!”
22 Finally, they said, “Who are you then? We have to give an answer to the ones who sent us. Tell us who you are!”
23 John answered in the words of the prophet Isaiah, “I am only someone shouting in the desert, ‘Get the road ready for the Lord!’”
24 Some Pharisees had also been sent to John. 25 They asked him, “Why are you baptizing people, if you are not the Messiah or Elijah or the Prophet?”
26 John told them, “I use water to baptize people. But here with you is someone you don’t know. 27 Even though I came first, I am not good enough to untie his sandals.” 28 John said this as he was baptizing east of the Jordan River in Bethany.[c]
The Lamb of God
29 The next day, John saw Jesus coming toward him and said:
Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! 30 He is the one I told you about when I said, “Someone else will come. He is greater than I am, because he was alive before I was born.” 31 I didn’t know who he was. But I came to baptize you with water, so that everyone in Israel would see him.
32 I was there and saw the Spirit come down on him like a dove from heaven. And the Spirit stayed on him. 33 Before this I didn’t know who he was. But the one who sent me to baptize with water had told me, “You will see the Spirit come down and stay on someone. Then you will know that he is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.” 34 I saw this happen, and I tell you that he is the Son of God.
The First Disciples of Jesus
35 The next day, John was there again, and two of his followers were with him. 36 When he saw Jesus walking by, he said, “Here is the Lamb of God!” 37 John’s two followers heard him, and they went with Jesus.
38 When Jesus turned and saw them, he asked, “What do you want?”
They answered, “Rabbi, where do you live?” The Hebrew word “Rabbi” means “Teacher.”
39 Jesus replied, “Come and see!” It was already about four o’clock in the afternoon when they went with him and saw where he lived. So they stayed on for the rest of the day.
40 One of the two men who had heard John and had gone with Jesus was Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter. 41 The first thing Andrew did was to find his brother and tell him, “We have found the Messiah!” The Hebrew word “Messiah” means the same as the Greek word “Christ.”
42 Andrew brought his brother to Jesus. And when Jesus saw him, he said, “Simon son of John, you will be called Cephas.” This name can be translated as “Peter.”[d]
Jesus Chooses Philip and Nathanael
43-44 The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. There he met Philip, who was from Bethsaida, the hometown of Andrew and Peter. Jesus said to Philip, “Come with me.”
45 Philip then found Nathanael and said, “We have found the one that Moses and the Prophets[e] wrote about. He is Jesus, the son of Joseph from Nazareth.”
46 Nathanael asked, “Can anything good come from Nazareth?”
Philip answered, “Come and see.”
47 When Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him, he said, “Here is a true descendant of our ancestor Israel. And he isn’t deceitful.”[f]
48 “How do you know me?” Nathanael asked.
Jesus answered, “Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree.”
49 Nathanael said, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God and the King of Israel!”
50 Jesus answered, “Did you believe me just because I said that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see something even greater. 51 I tell you for certain that you will see heaven open and God’s angels going up and coming down on the Son of Man.”[g]
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