In that day, the LORD will punish with his sword, his fierce, great and powerful sword, Leviathan the gliding serpent, Leviathan the coiling serpent; he will slay the monster of the sea.
In that day-- "Sing about a fruitful vineyard:
I, the LORD, watch over it; I water it continually. I guard it day and night so that no one may harm it.
I am not angry. If only there were briers and thorns confronting me! I would march against them in battle; I would set them all on fire.
Or else let them come to me for refuge; let them make peace with me, yes, let them make peace with me."
In days to come Jacob will take root, Israel will bud and blossom and fill all the world with fruit.
Has [the LORD] struck her as he struck down those who struck her? Has she been killed as those were killed who killed her?
By warfare and exile you contend with her-- with his fierce blast he drives her out, as on a day the east wind blows.
By this, then, will Jacob's guilt be atoned for, and this will be the full fruitage of the removal of his sin: When he makes all the altar stones to be like chalk stones crushed to pieces, no Asherah poles or incense altars will be left standing.
The fortified city stands desolate, an abandoned settlement, forsaken like the desert; there the calves graze, there they lie down; they strip its branches bare.
When its twigs are dry, they are broken off and women come and make fires with them. For this is a people without understanding; so their Maker has no compassion on them, and their Creator shows them no favor.
In that day the LORD will thresh from the flowing Euphrates to the Wadi of Egypt, and you, O Israelites, will be gathered up one by one.
And in that day a great trumpet will sound. Those who were perishing in Assyria and those who were exiled in Egypt will come and worship the LORD on the holy mountain in Jerusalem.
After six days Jesus took Peter, James and John with him and led them up a high mountain, where they were all alone. There he was transfigured before them.
His clothes became dazzling white, whiter than anyone in the world could bleach them.
And there appeared before them Elijah and Moses, who were talking with Jesus.
Peter said to Jesus, "Rabbi, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters--one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah."
(He did not know what to say, they were so frightened.)
Then a cloud appeared and enveloped them, and a voice came from the cloud: "This is my Son, whom I love. Listen to him!"
Suddenly, when they looked around, they no longer saw anyone with them except Jesus.
As they were coming down the mountain, Jesus gave them orders not to tell anyone what they had seen until the Son of Man had risen from the dead.
They kept the matter to themselves, discussing what "rising from the dead" meant.
And they asked him, "Why do the teachers of the law say that Elijah must come first?"
Jesus replied, "To be sure, Elijah does come first, and restores all things. Why then is it written that the Son of Man must suffer much and be rejected?13But I tell you, Elijah has come, and they have done to him everything they wished, just as it is written about him."
When they came to the other disciples, they saw a large crowd around them and the teachers of the law arguing with them.
As soon as all the people saw Jesus, they were overwhelmed with wonder and ran to greet him.
16"What are you arguing with them about?" he asked.
A man in the crowd answered, "Teacher, I brought you my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech.
Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not."
19"O unbelieving generation," Jesus replied, "how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy to me."20
So they brought him. When the spirit saw Jesus, it immediately threw the boy into a convulsion. He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth.
Jesus asked the boy's father, "How long has he been like this?" "From childhood," he answered.
"It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us."
23" 'If you can'?" said Jesus. "Everything is possible for him who believes."24
Immediately the boy's father exclaimed, "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief !"
When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the evil spirit. "You deaf and mute spirit," he said, "I command you, come out of him and never enter him again."26
The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out. The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said, "He's dead."
But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up.
After Jesus had gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately, "Why couldn't we drive it out?"
He replied, "This kind can come out only by prayer. "30
They left that place and passed through Galilee. Jesus did not want anyone to know where they were,
because he was teaching his disciples. He said to them, "The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of men. They will kill him, and after three days he will rise."32
But they did not understand what he meant and were afraid to ask him about it.
They came to Capernaum. When he was in the house, he asked them, "What were you arguing about on the road?"34
But they kept quiet because on the way they had argued about who was the greatest.
Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, "If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all."36
He took a little child and had him stand among them. Taking him in his arms, he said to them,
37"Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me."
"Teacher," said John, "we saw a man driving out demons in your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us."
39"Do not stop him," Jesus said. "No one who does a miracle in my name can in the next moment say anything bad about me,40for whoever is not against us is for us.41I tell you the truth, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to Christ will certainly not lose his reward.
42"And if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a large millstone tied around his neck.43If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out.45And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into hell.47And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell,48where " 'their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.'49Everyone will be salted with fire.50"Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with each other."
Jesus then left that place and went into the region of Judea and across the Jordan. Again crowds of people came to him, and as was his custom, he taught them.
Some Pharisees came and tested him by asking, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?"
3"What did Moses command you?" he replied.
They said, "Moses permitted a man to write a certificate of divorce and send her away."
5"It was because your hearts were hard that Moses wrote you this law," Jesus replied.
6"But at the beginning of creation God 'made them male and female.'7'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife,8and the two will become one flesh.' So they are no longer two, but one.9Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate."10
When they were in the house again, the disciples asked Jesus about this.
He answered, "Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her.12And if she divorces her husband and marries another man, she commits adultery."
People were bringing little children to Jesus to have him touch them, but the disciples rebuked them.
When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.15I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it."16
And he took the children in his arms, put his hands on them and blessed them.
As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. "Good teacher," he asked, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?"
18"Why do you call me good?" Jesus answered. "No one is good--except God alone.19You know the commandments: 'Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, do not defraud, honor your father and mother.' "20
"Teacher," he declared, "all these I have kept since I was a boy."
Jesus looked at him and loved him. "One thing you lack," he said. "Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me."22
At this the man's face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.
Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, "How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God!"24
The disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said again, "Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God!25It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."26
The disciples were even more amazed, and said to each other, "Who then can be saved?"
Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God."28
Peter said to him, "We have left everything to follow you!"
29"I tell you the truth," Jesus replied, "no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel30will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age (homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields--and with them, persecutions) and in the age to come, eternal life.31But many who are first will be last, and the last first."
They were on their way up to Jerusalem, with Jesus leading the way, and the disciples were astonished, while those who followed were afraid. Again he took the Twelve aside and told them what was going to happen to him.
33"We are going up to Jerusalem," he said, "and the Son of Man will be betrayed to the chief priests and teachers of the law. They will condemn him to death and will hand him over to the Gentiles,34who will mock him and spit on him, flog him and kill him. Three days later he will rise."
Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to him. "Teacher," they said, "we want you to do for us whatever we ask."
36"What do you want me to do for you?" he asked.
They replied, "Let one of us sit at your right and the other at your left in your glory."
38"You don't know what you are asking," Jesus said. "Can you drink the cup I drink or be baptized with the baptism I am baptized with?"39
"We can," they answered. Jesus said to them, "You will drink the cup I drink and be baptized with the baptism I am baptized with,40but to sit at my right or left is not for me to grant. These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared."41
When the ten heard about this, they became indignant with James and John.
Jesus called them together and said, "You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them.43Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant,44and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.45For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."
Then they came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples, together with a large crowd, were leaving the city, a blind man, Bartimaeus (that is, the Son of Timaeus), was sitting by the roadside begging.
When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!"
Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, "Son of David, have mercy on me!"
Jesus stopped and said, "Call him." So they called to the blind man, "Cheer up! On your feet! He's calling you."
Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus.
51"What do you want me to do for you?" Jesus asked him. The blind man said, "Rabbi, I want to see."
52"Go," said Jesus, "your faith has healed you." Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.
Woe to that wreath, the pride of Ephraim's drunkards, to the fading flower, his glorious beauty, set on the head of a fertile valley-- to that city, the pride of those laid low by wine!
See, the Lord has one who is powerful and strong. Like a hailstorm and a destructive wind, like a driving rain and a flooding downpour, he will throw it forcefully to the ground.
That wreath, the pride of Ephraim's drunkards, will be trampled underfoot.
That fading flower, his glorious beauty, set on the head of a fertile valley, will be like a fig ripe before harvest-- as soon as someone sees it and takes it in his hand, he swallows it.
In that day the LORD Almighty will be a glorious crown, a beautiful wreath for the remnant of his people.
He will be a spirit of justice to him who sits in judgment, a source of strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate.
And these also stagger from wine and reel from beer: Priests and prophets stagger from beer and are befuddled with wine; they reel from beer, they stagger when seeing visions, they stumble when rendering decisions.
All the tables are covered with vomit and there is not a spot without filth.
"Who is it he is trying to teach? To whom is he explaining his message? To children weaned from their milk, to those just taken from the breast?
For it is: Do and do, do and do, rule on rule, rule on rule; a little here, a little there."
Very well then, with foreign lips and strange tongues God will speak to this people,
to whom he said, "This is the resting place, let the weary rest"; and, "This is the place of repose"-- but they would not listen.
So then, the word of the LORD to them will become: Do and do, do and do, rule on rule, rule on rule; a little here, a little there-- so that they will go and fall backward, be injured and snared and captured.
Therefore hear the word of the LORD, you scoffers who rule this people in Jerusalem.
You boast, "We have entered into a covenant with death, with the grave we have made an agreement. When an overwhelming scourge sweeps by, it cannot touch us, for we have made a lie our refuge and falsehood our hiding place."
So this is what the Sovereign LORD says: "See, I lay a stone in Zion, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation; the one who trusts will never be dismayed.
I will make justice the measuring line and righteousness the plumb line; hail will sweep away your refuge, the lie, and water will overflow your hiding place.
Your covenant with death will be annulled; your agreement with the grave will not stand. When the overwhelming scourge sweeps by, you will be beaten down by it.
As often as it comes it will carry you away; morning after morning, by day and by night, it will sweep through." The understanding of this message will bring sheer terror.
The bed is too short to stretch out on, the blanket too narrow to wrap around you.
The LORD will rise up as he did at Mount Perazim, he will rouse himself as in the Valley of Gibeon-- to do his work, his strange work, and perform his task, his alien task.
Now stop your mocking, or your chains will become heavier; the Lord, the LORD Almighty, has told me of the destruction decreed against the whole land.
Listen and hear my voice; pay attention and hear what I say.
When a farmer plows for planting, does he plow continually? Does he keep on breaking up and harrowing the soil?
When he has leveled the surface, does he not sow caraway and scatter cummin? Does he not plant wheat in its place, barley in its plot, and spelt in its field?
His God instructs him and teaches him the right way.
Caraway is not threshed with a sledge, nor is a cartwheel rolled over cummin; caraway is beaten out with a rod, and cummin with a stick.
Grain must be ground to make bread; so one does not go on threshing it forever. Though he drives the wheels of his threshing cart over it, his horses do not grind it.
All this also comes from the LORD Almighty, wonderful in counsel and magnificent in wisdom.