18 mJethro, nthe priest of Midian, Moses’ father-in-law, heard of all that God had done for Moses and for Israel his people, how the Lord had brought Israel out of Egypt. 2 Now Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, had taken Zipporah, Moses’ wife, after he had sent her home, 3 along with her otwo sons. The name of the one was Gershom (pfor he said, q“I have been a sojourner1 in a foreign land”), 4 and the name of the other, Eliezer2 (for he said, “The God of my father was my help, and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh”). 5 Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, came with his sons and his wife to Moses in the wilderness where he was encamped at the rmountain of God. 6 And when he sent word to Moses, “I,3 your father-in-law Jethro, am coming to you with your wife and her two sons with her,” 7 Moses swent out to meet his father-in-law and bowed down and tkissed him. And they asked each other of their welfare and went into the tent. 8 Then Moses told his father-in-law uall that the Lord had done to Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for Israel’s sake, all the hardship that had come upon them in the way, and how the Lord had delivered them. 9 And Jethro rejoiced for all the good that the Lord had done to Israel, in that he had delivered them out of the hand of the Egyptians.
10 Jethro said, v“Blessed be the Lord, who has delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians and out of the hand of Pharaoh and has delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians. 11 Now I know that wthe Lord is greater than all gods, because in this affair they xdealt arrogantly with the people.”4 12 And Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, brought a burnt offering and sacrifices to God; and Aaron came with all the elders of Israel to eat bread with Moses’ father-in-law ybefore God.
13 The next day Moses sat to judge the people, and the people stood around Moses from morning till evening. 14 When Moses’ father-in-law saw all that he was doing for the people, he said, “What is this that you are doing for the people? Why do you sit alone, and all the people stand around you from morning till evening?” 15 And Moses said to his father-in-law, “Because zthe people come to me to inquire of God; 16 awhen they have a dispute, they come to me and I decide between one person and another, and I bmake them know the statutes of God and his laws.” 17 Moses’ father-in-law said to him, “What you are doing is not good. 18 You and the people with you will certainly wear yourselves out, for the thing is too heavy for you. cYou are not able to do it alone. 19 Now obey my voice; I will give you advice, and God be with you! You shall drepresent the people before God and ebring their cases to God, 20 and you shall warn them about the statutes and the laws, and make them know fthe way in which they must walk and gwhat they must do. 21 Moreover, look for hable men from all the people, men who fear God, who are trustworthy and hate a bribe, and place such men over the people as chiefs of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties, and of tens. 22 And ilet them judge the people at all times. jEvery great matter they shall bring to you, but any small matter they shall decide themselves. So it will be easier for you, and they will kbear the burden with you. 23 If you do this, God will direct you, you will be lable to endure, and all this people also will go to their place in peace.”
24 So Moses listened to the voice of his father-in-law and did all that he had said. 25 mMoses chose able men out of all Israel and made them heads over the people, chiefs of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties, and of tens. 26 And nthey judged the people at all times. Any hard case they brought to Moses, but any small matter they decided themselves. 27 Then Moses let his father-in-law depart, and ohe went away to his own country.
Israel at Mount Sinai
19 On the third new moon after the people of Israel had gone out of the land of Egypt, on that day they pcame into the wilderness of Sinai. 2 They set out from qRephidim and came into the wilderness of Sinai, and they encamped in the wilderness. There Israel encamped before rthe mountain, 3 while sMoses went up to God. tThe Lord called to him out of the mountain, saying, “Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob, and tell the people of Israel: 4 u‘You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how vI bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself. 5 Now therefore, if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be wmy treasured possession among all peoples, for xall the earth is mine; 6 and you shall be to me a ykingdom of priests and za holy nation.’ These are the words that you shall speak to the people of Israel.”
7 So Moses came and called the elders of the people and set before them all these words that the Lord had commanded him. 8 aAll the people answered together and said, “All that the Lord has spoken we will do.” And Moses reported the words of the people to the Lord. 9 And the Lord said to Moses, “Behold, I am coming to you bin a thick cloud, that cthe people may hear when I speak with you, and may also dbelieve you forever.”
When Moses told the words of the people to the Lord, 10 the Lord said to Moses, “Go to the people and econsecrate them today and tomorrow, and let them fwash their garments 11 and be ready for the third day. For on the third day gthe Lord will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people. 12 And you shall set limits for the people all around, saying, ‘Take care not to go up into the mountain or touch the edge of it. hWhoever touches the mountain shall be put to death. 13 No hand shall touch him, but he shall be stoned or shot;5 whether beast or man, he shall not live.’ When ithe trumpet sounds a long blast, they shall come up to the mountain.” 14 So Moses jwent down from the mountain to the people and econsecrated the people; fand they washed their garments. 15 And he said to the people, “Be ready for the kthird day; ldo not go near a woman.”
16 On the morning of the kthird day there were mthunders and lightnings and na thick cloud on the mountain and a very loud otrumpet blast, so that all the people in the camp ptrembled. 17 Then qMoses brought the people out of the camp to meet God, and they took their stand at the foot of the mountain. 18 Now rMount Sinai was wrapped in smoke because the Lord had descended on it in fire. The smoke of it went up like the smoke of a kiln, and sthe whole mountain trembled greatly. 19 And as the osound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke, and tGod answered him in thunder. 20 The Lord came down on Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain. And the Lord called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up.
21 And the Lord said to Moses, “Go down and warn the people, lest they break through to the Lord uto look and many of them perish. 22 Also let the priests who come near to the Lord vconsecrate themselves, lest the Lord wbreak out against them.” 23 And Moses said to the Lord, “The people cannot come up to Mount Sinai, for you yourself warned us, saying, x‘Set limits around the mountain and consecrate it.’” 24 And the Lord said to him, “Go down, and come up bringing Aaron with you. But do not let the priests and the people ybreak through to come up to the Lord, lest he break out against them.” 25 So Moses went down to the people and told them.
The Ten Commandments
2 b“I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.
4 d“You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 5 eYou shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am fa jealous God, gvisiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing steadfast love to thousands7 of those who love me and keep my commandments.
7 h“You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.
8 i“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 jSix days you shall labor, and do all your work, 10 but the kseventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the lsojourner who is within your gates. 11 For min six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.
14 q“You shall not commit adultery.
15 r“You shall not steal.
16 s“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
18 Now when all the people saw wthe thunder and the flashes of lightning and the sound of the trumpet and the mountain smoking, the people were afraid9 and trembled, and they stood far off 19 and said to Moses, x“You speak to us, and we will listen; but do not let God speak to us, lest we die.” 20 yMoses said to the people, “Do not fear, for God has come to ztest you, that the fear of him may be before you, that you may not sin.” 21 The people stood far off, while Moses drew near to the athick darkness where God was.
Laws About Altars
22 And the Lord said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the people of Israel: ‘You have seen for yourselves that I have btalked with you from heaven. 23 cYou shall not make gods of silver to be with me, nor shall you make for yourselves gods of gold. 24 An altar of earth you shall make for me and sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and your peace offerings, your sheep and your oxen. dIn every place where I cause my name to be remembered I will come to you and ebless you. 25 fIf you make me an altar of stone, gyou shall not build it of hewn stones, for if you wield your tool on it you profane it. 26 And you shall not go up by steps to my altar, that your nakedness be not exposed on it.’
Isaiah’s Vision of the Lord
6 In the year that sKing Uzziah died I tsaw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train1 of his robe filled the temple. 2 Above him stood the seraphim. Each had usix wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. 3 And one called to another and said:
u“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;
4 And wthe foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and xthe house was filled with smoke. 5 And I said: “Woe is me! yFor I am lost; zfor I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the aKing, the Lord of hosts!”
6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a burning coal that he had taken with tongs from the altar. 7 And he btouched my mouth and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin atoned for.”
Isaiah’s Commission from the Lord
8 And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for cus?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.” 9 And he said, “Go, and say to this people:
keep on seeing,4 but do not perceive.’
and their ears heavy,
and blind their eyes;
glest they see with their eyes,
and hear with their ears,
and understand with their hearts,
and turn and be healed.”
11 Then I said, h“How long, O Lord?”
And he said:
“Until icities lie waste
and houses without people,
and the land is a desolate waste,
12 and the Lord removes people far away,
and the forsaken places are many in the midst of the land.
13 jAnd though a tenth remain in it,
it will be burned6 again,
like a terebinth or an oak,
whose stump kremains
when it is felled.”
Isaiah Sent to King Ahaz
7 In the days of mAhaz the son of Jotham, son of Uzziah, king of Judah, nRezin the king of Syria and nPekah the son of Remaliah the king of Israel came up to Jerusalem to wage war against it, but could not yet mount an attack against it. 2 When the house of David was told, o“Syria is in league with8 pEphraim,” the heart of Ahaz9 and the heart of his people shook as the trees of the forest shake before the wind.
3 And the Lord said to Isaiah, “Go out to meet Ahaz, you and qShear-jashub10 your son, at the end of rthe conduit of the upper pool on the highway to the Washer’s Field. 4 And say to him, s‘Be careful, tbe quiet, do not fear, and do not let your heart be faint because of these two usmoldering stumps of firebrands, at the fierce anger of Rezin and Syria and vthe son of Remaliah. 5 Because Syria, with Ephraim and vthe son of Remaliah, has devised evil against you, saying, 6 “Let us go up against Judah and terrify it, and let us conquer it11 for ourselves, and set up the son of Tabeel as king in the midst of it,”
have seen a great light;
those who dwelt in a land of ldeep darkness,
on them has light shone.
3 mYou have multiplied the nation;
you have increased its joy;
they rejoice before you
as with njoy at the harvest,
4 qFor the yoke of his burden,
rand the staff for his shoulder,
the rod of his oppressor,
you have broken as son the day of Midian.
5 tFor every boot of the tramping warrior in battle tumult
and every garment rolled in blood
will be burned as fuel for the fire.
6 uFor to us a child is born,
to us va son is given;
and his name shall be called3
7 Of the increase of his government and of peace
dthere will be no end,
on the throne of David and over his kingdom,
to establish it and to uphold it
ewith justice and with righteousness
from this time forth and forevermore.
fThe zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.
The Sermon on the Mount
2 And qhe opened his mouth and taught them, saying:
4 “Blessed are vthose who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
7 “Blessed are zthe merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
11 g“Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely hon my account. 12 iRejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for jso they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Salt and Light
13 “You are the salt of the earth, kbut if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.
14 l“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 mNor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so nthat2 they may see your good works and ogive glory to your Father who is in heaven.
Christ Came to Fulfill the Law
17 p“Do not think that I have come to abolish qthe Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but rto fulfill them. 18 For truly, I say to you, suntil heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 19 tTherefore whoever relaxes uone of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least vin the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great vin the kingdom of heaven. 20 For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds wthat of the scribes and Pharisees, you xwill never enter the kingdom of heaven.
21 y“You have heard that it was said to those of old, z‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable ato judgment.’ 22 But I say to you that beveryone who is angry with his brother3 will be liable ato judgment; whoever insults4 his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to cthe hell5 of fire. 23 dSo if eyou are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. 25 fCome to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison. 26 Truly, I say to you, gyou will never get out until you have paid the last penny.6
27 h“You have heard that it was said, i‘You shall not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say to you that jeveryone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 kIf your right eye lcauses you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into mhell. 30 kAnd if your right hand lcauses you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into mhell.
31 h“It was also said, n‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’ 32 oBut I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality, makes her commit adultery, and pwhoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.
33 “Again hyou have heard that it was said to those of old, q‘You shall not swear falsely, but rshall perform to the Lord what you have sworn.’ 34 But I say to you, sDo not take an oath at all, either by heaven, for tit is the throne of God, 35 or by the earth, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is uthe city of the great King. 36 And do not take an oath by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black. 37 Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; vanything more than this comes from evil.7
38 h“You have heard that it was said, y‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I say to you, zDo not resist the one who is evil. But aif anyone bslaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40 And zif anyone would sue you and take your tunic,8 let him have your cloak as well. 41 And if anyone cforces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42 dGive to the one who begs from you, and edo not refuse the one who would borrow from you.
Love Your Enemies
43 f“You have heard that it was said, g‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, iLove your enemies and jpray for those who persecute you, 45 kso that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and lsends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 mFor if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers,9 what more are you doing than others? Do not even nthe Gentiles do the same? 48 oYou therefore must be pperfect, qas your heavenly Father is perfect.
Traditions and Commandments
15 eThen Pharisees and fscribes came to Jesus ffrom Jerusalem and said, 2 g“Why do your disciples break hthe tradition of the elders? jFor they do not wash their hands when they eat.” 3 He answered them, “And why do you break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition? 4 For God commanded, k‘Honor your father and your mother,’ and, l‘Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’ 5 But you say, ‘If anyone tells his father or his mother, “What you would have gained from me is given to God,”1 6 he need not honor his father.’ So for the sake of your tradition you have mmade void the word2 of God. 7 nYou hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy of you, when he said:
8 o“‘This people honors me with their lips,
but their heart is far from me;
9 in vain do they worship me,
teaching as pdoctrines the commandments of men.’”
What Defiles a Person
The Rich Young Man
16 iAnd behold, a man came up to him, saying, “Teacher, what good deed must I do to jhave keternal life?” 17 And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. lIf you would enter life, keep the commandments.” 18 He said to him, “Which ones?” And Jesus said, m“You shall not murder, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, 19 Honor your father and mother, and, nYou shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 20 The young man said to him, o“All these I have kept. What do I still lack?” 21 Jesus said to him, “If you would be pperfect, go, qsell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have rtreasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” 22 sWhen the young man heard this he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.
23 And Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly, I say to you, tonly with difficulty will a rich person enter the kingdom of heaven. 24 uAgain I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter vthe kingdom of God.” 25 When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” 26 But Jesus wlooked at them and said, x“With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” 27 Then Peter said in reply, “See, ywe have left everything and followed you. What then will we have?” 28 Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, in the new world,1 zwhen the Son of Man will sit on his glorious throne, you who have followed me awill also sit on twelve thrones, bjudging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 cAnd everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold2 and will dinherit eternal life. 30 But emany who are ffirst will be last, and the last first.
Seven Chosen to Serve
6 Now in these days kwhen the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint by the Hellenists1 arose against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in lthe daily distribution. 2 And the twelve summoned the full number of the disciples and said, “It is not right that we should give up preaching the word of God to serve tables. 3 mTherefore, brothers,2 pick out from among you seven men nof good repute, ofull of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty. 4 But pwe will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.” 5 And what they said pleased the whole gathering, and they chose Stephen, qa man full of faith and rof the Holy Spirit, and sPhilip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolaus, ta proselyte of Antioch. 6 These they set before the apostles, and uthey prayed and vlaid their hands on them.
God’s Judgment and the Law
12 For all who have sinned vwithout the law will also perish without the law, and all who have sinned under the law will be judged by the law. 13 For wit is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified. 14 For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, xby nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. 15 They show that the work of the law is ywritten on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them 16 zon that day when, aaccording to my gospel, God judges bthe secrets of men cby Christ Jesus.
17 But if you call yourself a Jew and drely on the law and boast in God 18 and know his will and approve what is excellent, because you are instructed from the law; 19 and if you are sure that you yourself are ea guide to the blind, a light to those who are in darkness, 20 an instructor of the foolish, a teacher of children, having in the law fthe embodiment of gknowledge and truth— 21 hyou then who teach others, do you not teach yourself? While you preach against stealing, do you steal? 22 You who say that one must not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you irob temples? 23 You who jboast in the law kdishonor God by breaking the law. 24 For, las it is written, “The name of God is blasphemed mamong the Gentiles because of you.”
25 For circumcision indeed is of value nif you obey the law, but if you break the law, your circumcision becomes uncircumcision. 26 So, if oa man who is uncircumcised keeps pthe precepts of the law, will not his uncircumcision be regarded1 as circumcision? 27 Then he who is physically2 uncircumcised but keeps the law qwill condemn you who have rthe written code3 and circumcision but break the law. 28 For sno one is a Jew twho is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward and physical. 29 But a Jew is one uinwardly, and vcircumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter. wHis praise is not from man but from God.
Released from the Law
7 Or do you not know, brothers1—for I am speaking to those who know the law—that the law is binding on a person only as long as he lives? 2 For ea married woman is bound by law to her husband while he lives, but if her husband dies she is released from the law of marriage.2 3 Accordingly, fshe will be called an adulteress if she lives with another man while her husband is alive. But if her husband dies, she is free from that law, and if she marries another man she is not an adulteress.
4 Likewise, my brothers, gyou also have died hto the law ithrough the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead, jin order that we may bear fruit for God. 5 For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work kin our members lto bear fruit for death. 6 But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the mnew way of nthe Spirit and not in the old way of the written code.3
The Law and Sin
7 What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, oI would not have known sin. For I would not have known what it is to covet if pthe law had not said, “You shall not covet.” 8 But sin, qseizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. rFor apart from the law, sin lies dead. 9 I was once alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin came alive and I died. 10 The very commandment sthat promised life proved to be death to me. 11 For sin, tseizing an opportunity through the commandment, udeceived me and through it killed me. 12 So vthe law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.
13 Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. 14 For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, wsold under sin. 15 For I do not understand my own actions. For xI do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.
Fulfilling the Law Through Love
8 wOwe no one anything, except to love each other, for xthe one who loves another has fulfilled the law. 9 For the commandments, y“You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and any other commandment, are summed up in this word: z“You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore alove is the fulfilling of the law.
Children and Parents
6 sChildren, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2 t“Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), 3 “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.”
Qualifications for Overseers
3 The saying is vtrustworthy: If anyone aspires to wthe office of overseer, he desires a noble task. 2 Therefore xan overseer1 must be above reproach, ythe husband of one wife,2 zsober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, ahospitable, bable to teach, 3 not a drunkard, not violent but cgentle, not quarrelsome, dnot a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own household well, with all dignity ekeeping his children submissive, 5 for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for wGod’s church? 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may fbecome puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover, he must be well thought of by goutsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into ha snare of the devil.
Qualifications for Deacons
8 iDeacons likewise must be dignified, not double-tongued,3 jnot addicted to much wine, knot greedy for dishonest gain. 9 They must lhold the mystery of the faith with ma clear conscience. 10 And nlet them also be tested first; then let them serve as deacons if they prove themselves blameless. 11 oTheir wives likewise4 must be dignified, not slanderers, but sober-minded, pfaithful in all things. 12 Let deacons each be qthe husband of one wife, qmanaging their children and their own households well. 13 For rthose who serve well as deacons gain a good standing for themselves and also great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.
The Mystery of Godliness
14 I hope to come to you soon, but I am writing these things to you so that,
Qualifications for Elders
5 oThis is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and pappoint elders in every town as I directed you— 6 qif anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife,1 and his children are believers2 and not open to the charge of rdebauchery or insubordination. 7 For an overseer,3 sas God’s steward, must be above reproach. He must not tbe arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent uor greedy for gain, 8 but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, vand disciplined. 9 He must whold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in xsound4 doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.
10 hFor this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel
after those days, declares the Lord:
I will put my laws into their minds,
and iwrite them on their hearts,
and I will be their God,
and they shall be my people.
A Kingdom That Cannot Be Shaken
18 For you have not come to zwhat may be touched, a blazing fire and darkness and gloom and a tempest 19 and athe sound of a trumpet and a voice whose words bmade the hearers beg that no further messages be spoken to them. 20 For they could not endure the order that was given, c“If even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.” 21 Indeed, dso terrifying was the sight that Moses said, “I tremble with fear.” 22 But you have come to eMount Zion and to the city of the living God, fthe heavenly Jerusalem, and to ginnumerable angels in festal gathering, 23 and to hthe assembly1 of the firstborn who are ienrolled in heaven, and to jGod, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, 24 and to Jesus, kthe mediator of a new covenant, and to lthe sprinkled blood mthat speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.
25 See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For nif they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven. 26 At that time ohis voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, p“Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” 27 This phrase, “Yet once more,” indicates qthe removal of things that are shaken—that is, things that have been made—in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Therefore let us be grateful for receiving ra kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus slet us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, 29 for our tGod is a consuming fire.
8 If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, i“You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well. 9 But if you jshow partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors. 10 For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point khas become guilty of all of it. 11 For he who said, l“Do not commit adultery,” also said, l“Do not murder.” If you do not commit adultery but do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law. 12 So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under mthe law of liberty. 13 For njudgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.
9 But you are za chosen race, aa royal bpriesthood, ca holy nation, da people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you eout of darkness into fhis marvelous light. 10 gOnce you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
Christ Our Advocate
2 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, ywe have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 2 zHe is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but aalso for the sins of the whole world. 3 And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we bkeep his commandments. 4 Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments cis a liar, and cthe truth is not in him, 5 but whoever dkeeps his word, in him truly ethe love of God is perfected. fBy this we may know that we are in him: 6 whoever says he gabides in him hought to walk in the same way in which he walked.
The New Commandment
7 Beloved, I am writing you ino new commandment, but jan old commandment kthat you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word that you have heard. 8 At the same time, it is la new commandment that I am writing to you, which is true in him and in you, because1 mthe darkness is passing away and nthe true light is already shining. 9 Whoever says he is in the light and ohates his brother is still in darkness. 10 Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him2 there is no pcause for stumbling. 11 But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and qwalks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.
12 I am writing to you, little children,
because ryour sins are forgiven for his name’s sake.
13 I am writing to you, fathers,
because you know shim who is from the beginning.
I am writing to you, young men,
because tyou have overcome the evil one.
I write to you, children,
because uyou know the Father.
14 I write to you, fathers,
because you know shim who is from the beginning.
I write to you, young men,
because tyou are strong,
and the word of God abides in you,
and you have overcome the evil one.
Do Not Love the World
15 vDo not love the world or the things in the world. wIf anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—xthe desires of the flesh and ythe desires of the eyes and pride of life3—is not from the Father but is from the world. 17 And zthe world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.
Warning Concerning Antichrists
18 Children, ait is the last hour, and as you have heard that bantichrist is coming, so now cmany antichrists have come. dTherefore we know that it is the last hour. 19 eThey went out from us, but they were not of us; for fif they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, gthat it might become plain that they all are not of us. 20 But you have been hanointed by ithe Holy One, and jyou all have knowledge.4 21 I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and because no lie is of the truth. 22 Who is the liar but khe who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is bthe antichrist, he who denies the Father and the Son. 23 lNo one who denies the Son has the Father. Whoever confesses the Son has the Father also. 24 Let mwhat you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then nyou too will abide in the Son and in the Father. 25 And this is the promise that he made to us5—oeternal life.
26 I write these things to you about pthose who are trying to deceive you. 27 But qthe anointing that you received from him abides in you, and ryou have no need that anyone should teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about everything, and sis true, and is no lie—just as it has taught you, abide in him.
Children of God
28 And now, little children, abide in him, so that twhen he appears uwe may have confidence and not shrink from him in shame at his vcoming. 29 If you know that whe is righteous, you may be sure that xeveryone who practices righteousness has been born of him.
3 See ywhat kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called zchildren of God; and so we are. The reason why athe world does not know us is that bit did not know him. 2 Beloved, we are zGod’s children cnow, and what we will be dhas not yet appeared; but we know that ewhen he appears6 fwe shall be like him, because gwe shall see him as he is. 3 And everyone who hthus hopes in him ipurifies himself as he is pure.
4 Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; jsin is lawlessness. 5 You know that khe appeared in order to ltake away sins, and min him there is no sin. 6 No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; nno one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. 7 Little children, olet no one deceive you. pWhoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. 8 qWhoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was rto destroy the works of the devil. 9 sNo one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s7 seed abides in him; and he cannot keep on sinning, because he has been born of God. 10 By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, tnor is the one who udoes not love his brother.
Love One Another
11 For vthis is the message that you have heard from the beginning, wthat we should love one another. 12 We should not be like xCain, who was of the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? yBecause his own deeds were evil and his brother’s righteous. 13 Do not be surprised, brothers,8 zthat the world hates you. 14 We know that awe have passed out of death into life, because we love the brothers. Whoever does not love abides in death. 15 bEveryone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that cno murderer has eternal life abiding in him.
16 By this we know love, that dhe laid down his life for us, and ewe ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. 17 But fif anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet gcloses his heart against him, hhow does God’s love abide in him? 18 Little children, let us not ilove in word or talk but in deed and jin truth.
19 By this we shall know that we are of the truth and reassure our heart before him; 20 for whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything. 21 Beloved, kif our heart does not condemn us, lwe have confidence before God; 22 and mwhatever we ask we receive from him, because we keep his commandments and ndo what pleases him. 23 And this is his commandment, othat we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and plove one another, qjust as he has commanded us. 24 rWhoever keeps his commandments abides in God,9 and God10 in him. And sby this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit whom he has given us.
Test the Spirits
4 Beloved, tdo not believe every spirit, but utest the spirits to see whether they are from God, for vmany wfalse prophets xhave gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: yevery spirit that confesses that zJesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3 and every spirit athat does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and bnow is in the world already. 4 Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for che who is in you is greater than dhe who is in the world. 5 eThey are from the world; therefore they speak from the world, and fthe world listens to them. 6 We are from God. gWhoever knows God listens to us; whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know hthe Spirit of truth and ithe spirit of error.
God Is Love
7 Beloved, jlet us love one another, for love is from God, and kwhoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 lAnyone who does not love does not know God, because mGod is love. 9 In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that nGod sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. 10 In this is love, onot that we have loved God nbut that he loved us and sent his Son to be pthe propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 qNo one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and rhis love is perfected in us.
13 sBy this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14 And twe have seen and testify that uthe Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of vthe world. 15 wWhoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16 So xwe have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. yGod is love, and zwhoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 17 By this ais love perfected with us, so that bwe may have confidence for the day of judgment, because cas he is so also are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love, but dperfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not abeen perfected in love. 19 eWe love because he first loved us. 20 fIf anyone says, “I love God,” and ghates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot11 love God hwhom he has not seen. 21 And ithis commandment we have from him: jwhoever loves God must also love his brother.
Overcoming the World
5 kEveryone who believes that lJesus is the Christ has been born of God, and meveryone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of him. 2 nBy this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. 3 For othis is the love of God, that we pkeep his commandments. And qhis commandments are not burdensome. 4 For reveryone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—sour faith. 5 Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes tthat Jesus is the Son of God?
Testimony Concerning the Son of God
6 This is he who came uby water and blood—Jesus Christ; not by the water only but by the water and the blood. And vthe Spirit is the one who testifies, because wthe Spirit is the truth. 7 For there are three that testify: 8 the Spirit and the water and the blood; and these three agree. 9 xIf we receive the testimony of men, the testimony of God is greater, for this is the testimony of God ythat he has borne concerning his Son. 10 Whoever believes in the Son of God zhas the testimony in himself. Whoever does not believe God ahas made him a liar, bbecause he has not believed in the testimony that God has borne concerning his Son. 11 And this is the testimony, that God gave us ceternal life, and dthis life is in his Son. 12 eWhoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
That You May Know
13 I write fthese things to you who gbelieve in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life. 14 And this is hthe confidence that we have toward him, that iif we ask anything according to his will he hears us. 15 And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.
16 If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask, and jGod12 will give him life—to those who commit sins that do not lead to death. kThere is sin that leads to death; lI do not say that one should pray for that. 17 mAll wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin that does not lead to death.
19 We know that we are from God, and qthe whole world lies in the power of the evil one.
20 And we know that the Son of God has come and rhas given us understanding, so that we may know shim who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and teternal life. 21 Little children, ukeep yourselves from idols.
10 And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now xthe salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers1 has been thrown down, ywho accuses them day and night before our God. 11 And zthey have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for athey loved not their lives beven unto death. 12 Therefore, crejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them! But dwoe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because ehe knows that his time is short!”
13 And when the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued fthe woman who had given birth to the male child. 14 But the woman was given the two gwings of the great eagle so that she might fly from the serpent hinto the wilderness, to the place where she is to be nourished ifor a time, and times, and half a time. 15 The serpent poured water jlike a river out of his mouth after the woman, to sweep her away with a flood. 16 But the earth came to the help of the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from his mouth. 17 Then the dragon became furious with the woman and went off kto make war on the rest of lher offspring, mon those who keep the commandments of God and hold to nthe testimony of Jesus. And he stood2 on the sand of the sea.