Free eBook: Getting Through the Storms in Life

Mark 6; Mark 7

1 Jesus left there and went to his hometown of Nazareth. His disciples went with him. 2 When the Sabbath day came, he began to teach in the synagogue. Many who heard him were amazed. "Where did this man get these things?" they asked. "What's this wisdom that has been given to him? He even does miracles! 3 Isn't this the carpenter? Isn't this Mary's son? Isn't this the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren't his sisters here with us?" They were not pleased with him at all. 4 Jesus said to them, "A prophet is not honored in his hometown. He doesn't receive any honor among his relatives. And he doesn't receive any in his own home." 5 Jesus laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them. But he could not do any other miracles there. 6 He was amazed because they had no faith. Jesus went around teaching from village to village. 7 He called the Twelve to him. Then he sent them out two by two. He gave them authority to drive out evil spirits. 8 Here were his orders. "Take only a walking stick for your trip. Do not take bread or a bag. Take no money in your belts. 9 Wear sandals. But do not take extra clothes. 10 When you are invited into a house, stay there until you leave town. 11 Some places may not welcome you or listen to you. If they don't, shake the dust off your feet when you leave. That will be a witness against the people living there." 12 They went out. And they preached that people should turn away from their sins. 13 They drove out many demons. They poured olive oil on many sick people and healed them. 14 King Herod heard about this. Jesus' name had become well known. Some were saying, "John the Baptist has been raised from the dead! That is why he has the power to do miracles." 15 Others said, "He is Elijah." Still others claimed, "He is a prophet. He is like one of the prophets of long ago." 16 But when Herod heard this, he said, "I had John's head cut off. And now he has been raised from the dead!" 17 In fact, it was Herod himself who had given orders to arrest John. He had him tied up and put in prison. He did this because of Herodias. She was the wife of Herod's brother Philip. But now Herod was married to her. 18 John had been saying to Herod, "It is against the Law for you to have your brother's wife." 19 Herodias held that against John. She wanted to kill him. But she could not, 20 because Herod was afraid of John. So he kept John safe. Herod knew John was a holy man who did what was right. When Herod heard him, he was very puzzled. But he liked to listen to him. 21 Finally the right time came. Herod gave a big dinner on his birthday. He invited his high officials and military leaders. He also invited the most important men in Galilee. 22 Then the daughter of Herodias came in and danced. She pleased Herod and his dinner guests. The king said to the girl, "Ask me for anything you want. I'll give it to you." 23 And he promised her with an oath, "Anything you ask for I will give you. I'll give you up to half of my kingdom." 24 She went out and said to her mother, "What should I ask for?" "The head of John the Baptist," she answered. 25 At once the girl hurried to ask the king. She said, "I want you to give me the head of John the Baptist on a big plate right now." 26 The king was very upset. But he thought of his promise and his dinner guests. So he did not want to say no to the girl. 27 He sent a man right away to bring John's head. The man went to the prison and cut off John's head. 28 He brought it back on a big plate. He gave it to the girl, and she gave it to her mother. 29 John's disciples heard about this. So they came and took his body. Then they placed it in a tomb. 30 The apostles gathered around Jesus. They told him all they had done and taught. 31 But many people were coming and going. So they did not even have a chance to eat. Then Jesus said to his apostles, "Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place. You need to get some rest." 32 So they went away by themselves in a boat to a quiet place. 33 But many people who saw them leaving recognized them. They ran from all the towns and got there ahead of them. 34 When Jesus came ashore, he saw a large crowd. He felt deep concern for them. They were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things. 35 By that time it was late in the day. His disciples came to him. "There is nothing here," they said. "It's already very late. 36 Send the people away. They can go and buy something to eat in the nearby countryside and villages." 37 But Jesus answered, "You give them something to eat." They said to him, "That would take eight months of a person's pay! Should we go and spend that much on bread? Are we supposed to feed them?" 38 "How many loaves do you have?" Jesus asked. "Go and see." When they found out, they said, "Five loaves and two fish." 39 Then Jesus directed them to have all the people sit down in groups on the green grass. 40 So they sat down in groups of 100s and 50s. 41 Jesus took the five loaves and the two fish. He looked up to heaven and gave thanks. He broke the loaves into pieces. Then he gave them to his disciples to set in front of the people. He also divided the two fish among them all. 42 All of them ate and were satisfied. 43 The disciples picked up 12 baskets of broken pieces of bread and fish. 44 The number of men who had eaten was 5,000. 45 Right away Jesus made his disciples get into the boat. He had them go on ahead of him to Bethsaida. Then he sent the crowd away. 46 After leaving them, he went up on a mountainside to pray. 47 When evening came, the boat was in the middle of the Sea of Galilee. Jesus was alone on land. 48 He saw the disciples pulling hard on the oars. The wind was blowing against them. Early in the morning, he went out to them. He walked on the lake. When he was about to pass by them, 49 they saw him walking on the lake. They thought he was a ghost. They cried out. 50 They all saw him and were terrified. Right away he said to them, "Be brave! It is I. Don't be afraid." 51 Then he climbed into the boat with them. The wind died down. And they were completely amazed. 52 They had not understood about the loaves. They were stubborn. 53 They crossed over the lake and landed at Gennesaret. There they tied up the boat. 54 As soon as Jesus and his disciples got out, people recognized him. 55 They ran through that whole area to bring to him those who were sick. They carried them on mats to where they heard he was. 56 He went into the villages, the towns and the countryside. Everywhere he went, the people brought the sick to the market places. Those who were sick begged him to let them touch just the edge of his clothes. And all who touched him were healed.
1 The Pharisees gathered around Jesus. So did some of the teachers of the law. All of them had come from Jerusalem. 2 They saw some of his disciples eating food with "unclean" hands. That means they were not washed. 3 The Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they wash their hands to make them pure. That's what the elders teach. 4 When they come from the market place, they do not eat unless they wash. And they follow many other teachings. For example, they wash cups, pitchers, and kettles in a special way. 5 So the Pharisees and the teachers of the law questioned Jesus. "Why don't your disciples live by what the elders teach?" they asked. "Why do they eat their food with 'unclean' hands?" 6 He replied, "Isaiah was right. He prophesied about you people who pretend to be good. He said, " 'These people honor me by what they say. But their hearts are far away from me. 7 Their worship doesn't mean anything to me. They teach nothing but human rules.' (Isaiah 29:13) 8 You have let go of God's commands. And you are holding on to the teachings that men have made up." 9 Jesus then said to them, "You have a fine way of setting aside God's commands! You do this so you can follow your own teachings. 10 Moses said, 'Honor your father and mother.'(Exodus 20:12; Deuteronomy 5:16) He also said, 'If anyone calls down a curse on his father or mother, he will be put to death.'(Exodus 21:17; Leviticus 20:9) 11 But you allow people to say to their parents, 'Any help you might have received from us is Corban.' (Corban means 'a gift set apart for God.' ) 12 So you no longer let them do anything for their parents. 13 You make the word of God useless by putting your own teachings in its place. And you do many things like that." 14 Again Jesus called the crowd to him. He said, "Listen to me, everyone. Understand this. 15 Nothing outside of you can make you 'unclean' by going into you. It is what comes out of you that makes you 'unclean.' " 17 Then he left the crowd and entered the house. His disciples asked him about this teaching. 18 "Don't you understand?" Jesus asked. "Don't you see? Nothing that enters people from the outside can make them 'unclean.' 19 It doesn't go into the heart. It goes into the stomach. Then it goes out of the body." In saying this, Jesus was calling all foods "clean." 20 He went on to say, "What comes out of people makes them 'unclean.' 21 Evil thoughts come from the inside, from people's hearts. So do sexual sins, stealing and murder. Adultery, 22 greed, hate and cheating come from people's hearts too. So do desires that are not pure, and wanting what belongs to others. And so do telling lies about others and being proud and being foolish. 23 All those evil things come from inside a person. They make him 'unclean.' " 24 Jesus went from there to a place near Tyre. He entered a house. He did not want anyone to know where he was. But he could not keep it a secret. 25 Soon a woman heard about him. An evil spirit controlled her little daughter. The woman came to Jesus and fell at his feet. 26 She was a Greek, born in Syrian Phoenicia. She begged Jesus to drive the demon out of her daughter. 27 "First let the children eat all they want," he told her. "It is not right to take the children's bread and throw it to their dogs." 28 "Yes, Lord," she replied. "But even the dogs under the table eat the children's crumbs." 29 Then he told her, "That was a good reply. You may go. The demon has left your daughter." 30 So she went home and found her child lying on the bed. And the demon was gone. 31 Then Jesus left the area of Tyre and went through Sidon. He went down to the Sea of Galilee and into the area known as the Ten Cities. 32 There some people brought a man to him. The man was deaf and could hardly speak. They begged Jesus to place his hand on him. 33 Jesus took the man to one side, away from the crowd. He put his fingers into the man's ears. Then he spit and touched the man's tongue. 34 Jesus looked up to heaven. With a deep sigh, he said to the man, ""Ephphatha!"" That means "Be opened!" 35 The man's ears were opened. His tongue was freed up, and he began to speak clearly. 36 Jesus ordered the people not to tell anyone. But the more he did so, the more they kept talking about it. 37 People were really amazed. "He has done everything well," they said. "He even makes deaf people able to hear. And he makes those who can't speak able to talk."
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