At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain1 and eat them.
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When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, "Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath."2
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He answered, "Haven't you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry?3
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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.4
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Or haven't you read in the Law that the priests on Sabbath duty in the temple desecrate the Sabbath5 and yet are innocent?
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I tell you that one greater than the temple is here.6
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If you had known what these words mean, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice,'7 you would not have condemned the innocent.
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For the Son of Man8 is Lord of the Sabbath."
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Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue,
and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to accuse Jesus,9 they asked him, "Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?"10
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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?11
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How much more valuable is a human being than a sheep!12 Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath."
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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.
But the Pharisees went out and plotted how they might kill Jesus.13
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Aware of this, Jesus withdrew from that place. A large crowd followed him, and he healed all who were ill.14
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He warned them not to tell others about him.15
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This was to fulfill16 what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah:
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"Here is my servant whom I have chosen, the one I love, in whom I delight;17 I will put my Spirit on him,18 and he will proclaim justice to the nations.
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He will not quarrel or cry out; no one will hear his voice in the streets.
A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out, till he leads justice to victory.
In his name the nations will put their hope."19
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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.20
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All the people were astonished and said, "Could this be the Son of David?"21
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But when the Pharisees heard this, they said, "It is only by Beelzebul,22 the prince of demons, that this fellow drives out demons."23
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Jesus knew their thoughts24 and said to them, "Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand.
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If Satan25 drives out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand?
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And if I drive out demons by Beelzebul,26 by whom do your people27 drive them out? So then, they will be your judges.
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But if it is by the Spirit of God that I drive out demons, then the kingdom of God28 has come upon you.
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"Or again, how can anyone enter a strong man's house and carry off his possessions without first tying up the strong man? Then his house can be plundered.
"Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.29
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And so I tell you, people will be forgiven every sin and blasphemy. But blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.30
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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 age31 or in the age to come.32
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"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.33
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You brood of vipers,34 how can you who are evil say anything good? For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.35
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Good people bring good things out of the good stored up in them, and evil people bring evil things out of the evil stored up in them.
But I tell you that people will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken.
For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned."36
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Then some of the Pharisees and teachers of the law said to him, "Teacher, we want to see a sign37 from you."38
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He answered, "A wicked and adulterous generation asks for a sign! But none will be given it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.39
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For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish,40 so the Son of Man41 will be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.42
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The people of Nineveh43 will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah,44 and now one greater than Jonah is here.
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The Queen of the South will rise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for she came45 from the ends of the earth to listen to Solomon's wisdom, and now one greater than Solomon is here.
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"When an evil spirit comes out of anyone, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it.
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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.
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 person is worse than the first.46 That is how it will be with this wicked generation."
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While Jesus was still talking to the crowd, his mother47 and brothers48 stood outside, wanting to speak to him.
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Someone told him, "Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you."
He replied to him, "Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?"
Pointing to his disciples, he said, "Here are my mother and my brothers.
For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven49 is my brother and sister and mother."
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