One Sabbath day Jesus was walking through the grainfields. His disciples began to break off some heads of grain. They rubbed them in their hands and ate them.
Some of the Pharisees said, "It is against the Law to do this on the Sabbath. Why are you doing it?"
Jesus answered them, "Haven't you ever read about what David did? He and his men were hungry.
He entered the house of God and took the holy bread. He ate the bread that only priests were allowed to eat. David also gave some to his men."
Then Jesus said to them, "The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath day."
On another Sabbath day, Jesus went into the synagogue and was teaching. A man whose right hand was weak and twisted was there.
The Pharisees and the teachers of the law were trying to find fault with Jesus. So they watched him closely. They wanted to see if he would heal on the Sabbath.
But Jesus knew what they were thinking. He spoke to the man who had the weak and twisted hand. "Get up and stand in front of everyone," he said. So the man got up and stood there.
Then Jesus said to them, "What does the Law say we should do on the Sabbath day? Should we do good? Or should we do evil? Should we save life? Or should we destroy it?"
He looked around at all of them. Then he said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." He did, and his hand was as good as new.
But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law were very angry. They began to talk to each other about what they might do to Jesus.
On one of those days, Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray. He spent the night praying to God.
When morning came, he called for his disciples to come to him. He chose 12 of them and made them apostles.
Simon was one of them. Jesus gave him the name Peter. There were also Simon's brother Andrew, James, John, Philip and Bartholomew.
And there were Matthew, Thomas, and James, son of Alphaeus. There were also Simon who was called the Zealot
and Judas, son of James. Judas Iscariot was one of them too. He was the one who would later hand Jesus over to his enemies.
Jesus went down the mountain with them and stood on a level place. A large crowd of his disciples was there. A large number of other people were there too. They came from all over Judea, including Jerusalem. They also came from the coast of Tyre and Sidon.
They had all come to hear Jesus and to be healed of their sicknesses. People who were troubled by evil spirits were made well.
Everyone tried to touch Jesus. Power was coming from him and healing them all.
Jesus looked at his disciples. He said to them, "Blessed are you who are needy. God's kingdom belongs to you.
Blessed are you who are hungry now. You will be satisfied. Blessed are you who are sad now. You will laugh.
Blessed are you when people hate you, when they have nothing to do with you and say bad things about you, and when they treat your name as something evil.
"Their people treated the prophets the same way long ago. When these things happen to you, be glad and jump for joy. You will receive many blessings in heaven.
"But how terrible it will be for you who are rich! You have already had your easy life.
How terrible for you who are well fed now! You will go hungry. How terrible for you who laugh now! You will cry and be sad.
How terrible for you when everyone says good things about you! Their people treated the false prophets the same way long ago.
"But here is what I tell you who hear me. Love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you.
Bless those who call down curses on you. And pray for those who treat you badly.
"Suppose someone hits you on one cheek. Turn your other cheek to him also. Suppose someone takes your coat. Don't stop him from taking your shirt.
"Give to everyone who asks you. And if anyone takes what belongs to you, don't ask to get it back.
Do to others as you want them to do to you.
"Suppose you love those who love you. Should anyone praise you for that? Even 'sinners' love those who love them.
And suppose you do good to those who are good to you. Should anyone praise you for that? Even 'sinners' do that.
And suppose you lend money to those who can pay you back. Should anyone praise you for that? Even a 'sinner' lends to 'sinners,' expecting them to pay everything back.
"But love your enemies. Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then you will receive a lot in return. And you will be sons of the Most High God. He is kind to people who are evil and are not thankful.
So have mercy, just as your Father has mercy.
"If you do not judge others, then you will not be judged. If you do not find others guilty, then you will not be found guilty. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.
Give, and it will be given to you. A good amount will be poured into your lap. It will be pressed down, shaken together, and running over. The same amount you give will be measured out to you."
Jesus also gave them another example. He asked, "Can a blind person lead another blind person? Won't they both fall into a pit?
Students are not better than their teachers. But everyone who is completely trained will be like his teacher.
"You look at the bit of sawdust in your friend's eye. But you pay no attention to the piece of wood in your own eye.
How can you say to your friend, 'Let me take the bit of sawdust out of your eye'? How can you say this while there is a piece of wood in your own eye? You pretender! First take the piece of wood out of your own eye. Then you will be able to see clearly to take the bit of sawdust out of your friend's eye.
"A good tree doesn't bear bad fruit. And a bad tree doesn't bear good fruit.
You can tell each tree by the kind of fruit it bears. People do not pick figs from thorns. And they don't pick grapes from bushes.
"A good man says good things. These come from the good that is put away in his heart. An evil man says evil things. These come from the evil that is put away in his heart. Their mouths say everything that is in their hearts.
"Why do you call me, 'Lord, Lord,' and still don't do what I say?
Some people come to me and listen to me and do what I say. I will show you what they are like.
They are like someone who builds a house. He digs down deep and sets it on solid rock. When a flood comes, the river rushes against the house. But the water can't shake it. The house is well built.
"But here is what happens when people listen to my words and do not obey them. They are like someone who builds a house on soft ground instead of solid rock. The moment the river rushes against that house, it falls down. It is completely destroyed."