Who has believed our message and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?
He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted.
But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.
We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.
By oppression and judgment he was taken away. And who can speak of his descendants? For he was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgression of my people he was stricken.
He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in his mouth.
Yet it was the LORD's will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.
After the suffering of his soul, he will see the light [of life] and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities.
Therefore I will give him a portion among the great, and he will divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors. For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through.
A man was there by the name of Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was wealthy.
He wanted to see who Jesus was, but being a short man he could not, because of the crowd.
So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way.
When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, "Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today."6
So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly.
All the people saw this and began to mutter, "He has gone to be the guest of a 'sinner.' "
But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, "Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount."
Jesus said to him, "Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham.10For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost."
While they were listening to this, he went on to tell them a parable, because he was near Jerusalem and the people thought that the kingdom of God was going to appear at once.
He said: "A man of noble birth went to a distant country to have himself appointed king and then to return.13So he called ten of his servants and gave them ten minas. 'Put this money to work,' he said, 'until I come back.'14"But his subjects hated him and sent a delegation after him to say, 'We don't want this man to be our king.'15"He was made king, however, and returned home. Then he sent for the servants to whom he had given the money, in order to find out what they had gained with it.16"The first one came and said, 'Sir, your mina has earned ten more.'17" 'Well done, my good servant!' his master replied. 'Because you have been trustworthy in a very small matter, take charge of ten cities.'18"The second came and said, 'Sir, your mina has earned five more.'19"His master answered, 'You take charge of five cities.'20"Then another servant came and said, 'Sir, here is your mina; I have kept it laid away in a piece of cloth.21I was afraid of you, because you are a hard man. You take out what you did not put in and reap what you did not sow.'22"His master replied, 'I will judge you by your own words, you wicked servant! You knew, did you, that I am a hard man, taking out what I did not put in, and reaping what I did not sow?23Why then didn't you put my money on deposit, so that when I came back, I could have collected it with interest?'24"Then he said to those standing by, 'Take his mina away from him and give it to the one who has ten minas.'25" 'Sir,' they said, 'he already has ten!'26"He replied, 'I tell you that to everyone who has, more will be given, but as for the one who has nothing, even what he has will be taken away.27But those enemies of mine who did not want me to be king over them--bring them here and kill them in front of me.' "
After Jesus had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem.
As he approached Bethphage and Bethany at the hill called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, saying to them,
30"Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here.31If anyone asks you, 'Why are you untying it?' tell him, 'The Lord needs it.' "32
Those who were sent ahead went and found it just as he had told them.
As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, "Why are you untying the colt?"
They replied, "The Lord needs it."
They brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it.
As he went along, people spread their cloaks on the road.
When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:
"Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!" "Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!"
Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, "Teacher, rebuke your disciples!"
40"I tell you," he replied, "if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out."41
As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it
and said, "If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace--but now it is hidden from your eyes.43The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side.44They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God's coming to you."
Then he entered the temple area and began driving out those who were selling.
46"It is written," he said to them, " 'My house will be a house of prayer'; but you have made it 'a den of robbers.' "47
Every day he was teaching at the temple. But the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the leaders among the people were trying to kill him.
Yet they could not find any way to do it, because all the people hung on his words.
One day as he was teaching the people in the temple courts and preaching the gospel, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, together with the elders, came up to him.
"Tell us by what authority you are doing these things," they said. "Who gave you this authority?"
He replied, "I will also ask you a question. Tell me,4John's baptism--was it from heaven, or from men?"5
They discussed it among themselves and said, "If we say, 'From heaven,' he will ask, 'Why didn't you believe him?'
But if we say, 'From men,' all the people will stone us, because they are persuaded that John was a prophet."
So they answered, "We don't know where it was from."
Jesus said, "Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things."
He went on to tell the people this parable: "A man planted a vineyard, rented it to some farmers and went away for a long time.10At harvest time he sent a servant to the tenants so they would give him some of the fruit of the vineyard. But the tenants beat him and sent him away empty-handed.11He sent another servant, but that one also they beat and treated shamefully and sent away empty-handed.12He sent still a third, and they wounded him and threw him out.13"Then the owner of the vineyard said, 'What shall I do? I will send my son, whom I love; perhaps they will respect him.'14"But when the tenants saw him, they talked the matter over. 'This is the heir,' they said. 'Let's kill him, and the inheritance will be ours.'15So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. "What then will the owner of the vineyard do to them?16He will come and kill those tenants and give the vineyard to others." When the people heard this, they said, "May this never be!"
Jesus looked directly at them and asked, "Then what is the meaning of that which is written: " 'The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone ' ?18Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces, but he on whom it falls will be crushed."19
The teachers of the law and the chief priests looked for a way to arrest him immediately, because they knew he had spoken this parable against them. But they were afraid of the people.
Keeping a close watch on him, they sent spies, who pretended to be honest. They hoped to catch Jesus in something he said so that they might hand him over to the power and authority of the governor.
So the spies questioned him: "Teacher, we know that you speak and teach what is right, and that you do not show partiality but teach the way of God in accordance with the truth.
Is it right for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?"
He saw through their duplicity and said to them,
24"Show me a denarius. Whose portrait and inscription are on it?"25
"Caesar's," they replied. He said to them, "Then give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's."26
They were unable to trap him in what he had said there in public. And astonished by his answer, they became silent.
Some of the Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to Jesus with a question.
"Teacher," they said, "Moses wrote for us that if a man's brother dies and leaves a wife but no children, the man must marry the widow and have children for his brother.
Now there were seven brothers. The first one married a woman and died childless.
and then the third married her, and in the same way the seven died, leaving no children.
Finally, the woman died too.
Now then, at the resurrection whose wife will she be, since the seven were married to her?"
Jesus replied, "The people of this age marry and are given in marriage.35But those who are considered worthy of taking part in that age and in the resurrection from the dead will neither marry nor be given in marriage,36and they can no longer die; for they are like the angels. They are God's children, since they are children of the resurrection.37But in the account of the bush, even Moses showed that the dead rise, for he calls the Lord 'the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.'38He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive."39
Some of the teachers of the law responded, "Well said, teacher!"
And no one dared to ask him any more questions.
Then Jesus said to them, "How is it that they say the Christ is the Son of David?42David himself declares in the Book of Psalms: " 'The Lord said to my Lord: "Sit at my right hand43until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet." '44David calls him 'Lord.' How then can he be his son?"45
While all the people were listening, Jesus said to his disciples,
46"Beware of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around in flowing robes and love to be greeted in the marketplaces and have the most important seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at banquets.47They devour widows' houses and for a show make lengthy prayers. Such men will be punished most severely."
"Sing, O barren woman, you who never bore a child; burst into song, shout for joy, you who were never in labor; because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband," says the LORD.
"Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes.
For you will spread out to the right and to the left; your descendants will dispossess nations and settle in their desolate cities.
"Do not be afraid; you will not suffer shame. Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated. You will forget the shame of your youth and remember no more the reproach of your widowhood.
For your Maker is your husband-- the LORD Almighty is his name-- the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth.
The LORD will call you back as if you were a wife deserted and distressed in spirit-- a wife who married young, only to be rejected," says your God.
"For a brief moment I abandoned you, but with deep compassion I will bring you back.
In a surge of anger I hid my face from you for a moment, but with everlasting kindness I will have compassion on you," says the LORD your Redeemer.
"To me this is like the days of Noah, when I swore that the waters of Noah would never again cover the earth. So now I have sworn not to be angry with you, never to rebuke you again.
Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed," says the LORD, who has compassion on you.
"O afflicted city, lashed by storms and not comforted, I will build you with stones of turquoise, your foundations with sapphires.
I will make your battlements of rubies, your gates of sparkling jewels, and all your walls of precious stones.
All your sons will be taught by the LORD, and great will be your children's peace.
In righteousness you will be established: Tyranny will be far from you; you will have nothing to fear. Terror will be far removed; it will not come near you.
If anyone does attack you, it will not be my doing; whoever attacks you will surrender to you.
"See, it is I who created the blacksmith who fans the coals into flame and forges a weapon fit for its work. And it is I who have created the destroyer to work havoc;
no weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and this is their vindication from me," declares the LORD.