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Matthew 12 MSG/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

 
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The Message (MSG) New International Version (NIV)
1 One Sabbath, Jesus was strolling with his disciples through a field of ripe grain. Hungry, the disciples were pulling off the heads of grain and munching on them. 1 At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain and eat them.
2 Some Pharisees reported them to Jesus: "Your disciples are breaking the Sabbath rules!" 2 When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, "Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath."
3 Jesus said, "Really? Didn't you ever read what David and his companions did when they were hungry, 3 He answered, "Haven't you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry?
4 how they entered the sanctuary and ate fresh bread off the altar, bread that no one but priests were allowed to eat? 4 He entered the house of God, and he and his companions ate the consecrated bread--which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests.
5 And didn't you ever read in God's Law that priests carrying out their Temple duties break Sabbath rules all the time and it's not held against them? 5 Or haven't you read in the Law that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple desecrate the day and yet are innocent?
6 "There is far more at stake here than religion. 6 I tell you that one greater than the temple is here.
7 If you had any idea what this Scripture meant - 'I prefer a flexible heart to an inflexible ritual' - you wouldn't be nitpicking like this. 7 If you had known what these words mean, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the innocent.
8 The Son of Man is no lackey to the Sabbath; he's in charge." 8 For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath."
9 When Jesus left the field, he entered their meeting place. 9 Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue,
10 There was a man there with a crippled hand. They said to Jesus, "Is it legal to heal on the Sabbath?" They were baiting him. 10 and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, they asked him, "Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?"
11 He replied, "Is there a person here who, finding one of your lambs fallen into a ravine, wouldn't, even though it was a Sabbath, pull it out? 11 He said to them, "If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out?
12 Surely kindness to people is as legal as kindness to animals!" 12 How much more valuable is a man than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath."
13 Then he said to the man, "Hold out your hand." He held it out and it was healed. 13 Then he said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other.
14 The Pharisees walked out furious, sputtering about how they were going to ruin Jesus. 14 But the Pharisees went out and plotted how they might kill Jesus.
15 Jesus, knowing they were out to get him, moved on. A lot of people followed him, and he healed them all 15 Aware of this, Jesus withdrew from that place. Many followed him, and he healed all their sick,
16 . He also cautioned them to keep it quiet, 16 warning them not to tell who he was.
17 following guidelines set down by Isaiah: 17 This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah:
18 Look well at my handpicked servant; I love him so much, take such delight in him. I've placed my Spirit on him; he'll decree justice to the nations. 18 "Here is my servant whom I have chosen, the one I love, in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on him, and he will proclaim justice to the nations.
19 But he won't yell, won't raise his voice; there'll be no commotion in the streets. 19 He will not quarrel or cry out; no one will hear his voice in the streets.
20 He won't walk over anyone's feelings, won't push you into a corner. Before you know it, his justice will triumph; 20 A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out, till he leads justice to victory.
21 the mere sound of his name will signal hope, even among far-off unbelievers. 21 In his name the nations will put their hope."
22 Next a poor demon-afflicted wretch, both blind and deaf, was set down before him. Jesus healed him, gave him his sight and hearing. 22 Then they brought him a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute, and Jesus healed him, so that he could both talk and see.
23 The people who saw it were impressed - "This has to be the Son of David!" 23 All the people were astonished and said, "Could this be the Son of David?"
24 But the Pharisees, when they heard the report, were cynical. "Black magic," they said. "Some devil trick he's pulled from his sleeve." 24 But when the Pharisees heard this, they said, "It is only by Beelzebub, the prince of demons, that this fellow drives out demons."
25 Jesus confronted their slander. "A judge who gives opposite verdicts on the same person cancels himself out; a family that's in a constant squabble disintegrates; 25 Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, "Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand.
26 if Satan banishes Satan, is there any Satan left? 26 If Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand?
27 If you're slinging devil mud at me, calling me a devil kicking out devils, doesn't the same mud stick to your own exorcists? 27 And if I drive out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your people drive them out? So then, they will be your judges.
28 "But if it's by God's power that I am sending the evil spirits packing, then God's kingdom is here for sure. 28 But if I drive out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.
29 How in the world do you think it's possible in broad daylight to enter the house of an awake, able-bodied man and walk off with his possessions unless you tie him up first? Tie him up, though, and you can clean him out. 29 "Or again, how can anyone enter a strong man's house and carry off his possessions unless he first ties up the strong man? Then he can rob his house.
30 "This is war, and there is no neutral ground. If you're not on my side, you're the enemy; if you're not helping, you're making things worse. 30 "He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters.
31 "There's nothing done or said that can't be forgiven. But if you deliberately persist in your slanders against God's Spirit, you are repudiating the very One who forgives. 31 And so I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.
32 If you reject the Son of Man out of some misunderstanding, the Holy Spirit can forgive you, but when you reject the Holy Spirit, you're sawing off the branch on which you're sitting, severing by your own perversity all connection with the One who forgives. 32 Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.
33 "If you grow a healthy tree, you'll pick healthy fruit. If you grow a diseased tree, you'll pick worm-eaten fruit. The fruit tells you about the tree. 33 "Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit.
34 "You have minds like a snake pit! How do you suppose what you say is worth anything when you are so foul-minded? It's your heart, not the dictionary, that gives meaning to your words. 34 You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.
35 A good person produces good deeds and words season after season. An evil person is a blight on the orchard. 35 The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.
36 Let me tell you something: Every one of these careless words is going to come back to haunt you. There will be a time of Reckoning. Words are powerful; take them seriously. 36 But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken.
37 Words can be your salvation. Words can also be your damnation." 37 For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned."
38 Later a few religion scholars and Pharisees got on him. "Teacher, we want to see your credentials. Give us some hard evidence that God is in this. How about a miracle?" 38 Then some of the Pharisees and teachers of the law said to him, "Teacher, we want to see a miraculous sign from you."
39 Jesus said, "You're looking for proof, but you're looking for the wrong kind. All you want is something to titillate your curiosity, satisfy your lust for miracles. The only proof you're going to get is what looks like the absence of proof: Jonah-evidence. 39 He answered, "A wicked and adulterous generation asks for a miraculous sign! But none will be given it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.
40 Like Jonah, three days and nights in the fish's belly, the Son of Man will be gone three days and nights in a deep grave. 40 For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
41 "On Judgment Day, the Ninevites will stand up and give evidence that will condemn this generation, because when Jonah preached to them they changed their lives. A far greater preacher than Jonah is here, and you squabble about 'proofs.' 41 The men of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and now one greater than Jonah is here.
42 On Judgment Day, the Queen of Sheba will come forward and bring evidence that will condemn this generation, because she traveled from a far corner of the earth to listen to wise Solomon. Wisdom far greater than Solomon's is right in front of you, and you quibble over 'evidence.' 42 The Queen of the South will rise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for she came from the ends of the earth to listen to Solomon's wisdom, and now one greater than Solomon is here.
43 "When a defiling evil spirit is expelled from someone, it drifts along through the desert looking for an oasis, some unsuspecting soul it can bedevil. When it doesn't find anyone, 43 "When an evil spirit comes out of a man, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it.
44 it says, 'I'll go back to my old haunt.' On return it finds the person spotlessly clean, but vacant. 44 Then it says, 'I will return to the house I left.' When it arrives, it finds the house unoccupied, swept clean and put in order.
45 It then runs out and rounds up seven other spirits more evil than itself and they all move in, whooping it up. That person ends up far worse off than if he'd never gotten cleaned up in the first place. "That's what this generation is like: You may think you have cleaned out the junk from your lives and gotten ready for God, but you weren't hospitable to my kingdom message, and now all the devils are moving back in." 45 Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that man is worse than the first. That is how it will be with this wicked generation."
46 While he was still talking to the crowd, his mother and brothers showed up. They were outside trying to get a message to him. 46 While Jesus was still talking to the crowd, his mother and brothers stood outside, wanting to speak to him.
47 Someone told Jesus, "Your mother and brothers are out here, wanting to speak with you." 47 Someone told him, "Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you."
48 Jesus didn't respond directly, but said, "Who do you think my mother and brothers are?" 48 He replied to him, "Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?"
49 He then stretched out his hand toward his disciples. "Look closely. These are my mother and brothers. 49 Pointing to his disciples, he said, "Here are my mother and my brothers.
50 Obedience is thicker than blood. The person who obeys my heavenly Father's will is my brother and sister and mother." 50 For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother."