Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Get up, take your mat and walk'?
But I want you to know that the Son of Man1 has authority on earth to forgive sins." So he said to the man,
"I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home."
He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God,2 saying, "We have never seen anything like this!"3
Once again Jesus went out beside the lake. A large crowd came to him,4 and he began to teach them.
As he walked along, he saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax collector's booth. "Follow me,"5 Jesus told him, and Levi got up and followed him.
While Jesus was having dinner at Levi's house, many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him.
When the teachers of the law who were Pharisees6 saw him eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they asked his disciples: "Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?"7
On hearing this, Jesus said to them, "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners."8
Now John's disciples and the Pharisees were fasting.9 Some people came and asked Jesus, "How is it that John's disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees are fasting, but yours are not?"
Jesus answered, "How can the guests of the bridegroom fast while he is with them? They cannot, so long as they have him with them.