Matthew 13

Messengers from John the Baptist

11 When Jesus had finished instructing his twelve disciples, he went on from there to teach and preach in their cities.

eNow when John heard fin prison about the deeds of gthe Christ, he sent word by hhis disciples and said to him, Are you ithe one who is to come, or shall we jlook for another? And Jesus answered them, Go and tell John what you hear and see: kthe blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers1 are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and lthe poor have good news preached to them. And blessed is the one who mis not offended by me.

As they went away, Jesus began to speak to the crowds concerning John: What did you go out ninto the wilderness to see? oA reed shaken by the wind? What then did you go out to see? A man2 dressed in soft clothing? Behold, those who wear soft clothing are in kings' houses. What then did you go out to see? pA prophet?3 Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. 10 This is he of whom it is written,

qBehold, I send my messenger before your face,

who will prepare your way before you.

11 Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has arisen no one greater than John the Baptist. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. 12 rFrom the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence,4 and the violent take it by force. 13 rFor all the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John, 14 and if you are willing to accept it, he is sElijah who is to come. 15 tHe who has ears to hear,5 let him hear.

16 But to what shall I compare this generation? It is like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling to their playmates,

17  We played the flute for you, and you did not dance;

we sang a dirge, and you did not mourn.

18 For John came uneither eating vnor drinking, and they say, He has a demon. 19 The Son of Man came weating and drinking, and they say, Look at him! A glutton and a drunkard, xa friend of ytax collectors and sinners! Yet wisdom is justified by her deeds.6

Woe to Unrepentant Cities

20 zThen he began to denounce the cities where most of his mighty works had been done, because they did not repent. 21 aWoe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in bTyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 cBut I tell you, it will be more bearable on dthe day of judgment for bTyre and Sidon than for you. 23 And you, eCapernaum, will you be exalted to heaven? You will be brought down to fHades. For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. 24 cBut I tell you that git will be more tolerable on dthe day of judgment for the land of Sodom than for you.

Come to Me, and I Will Give You Rest

25 hAt that time Jesus declared, I thank you, Father, iLord of heaven and earth, that jyou have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and krevealed them to little children; 26 yes, Father, for such was your lgracious will.7 27 mAll things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son nexcept the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone oto whom the Son chooses to reveal him. 28 pCome to qme, all who labor and are rheavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and slearn from me, for I am tgentle and lowly in heart, and uyou will find rest for your souls. 30 For vmy yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

Jesus Is Lord of the Sabbath

12 At that time wJesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry, and xthey began to pluck heads of grain and to eat. But when the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, yLook, your disciples are doing zwhat is not lawful to do on the Sabbath. He said to them, aHave you not read what David did when he was hungry, and those who were with him: how he entered the house of God and ate bthe bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him to eat nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests? Or have you not read cin the Law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath and are guiltless? I tell you, dsomething greater than the temple is here. And if you had known ewhat this means, fI desire mercy, and not sacrifice, you would not have condemned the guiltless. For gthe Son of Man is lord of the Sabbath.

A Man with a Withered Hand

He went on from there and hentered their synagogue. 10 And a man was there with a withered hand. And they asked him, iIs it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?jso that they might accuse him. 11 He said to them, Which one of you who has a sheep, kif it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 lOf how much more value is a man than a sheep! So mit is lawful to do good on the Sabbath. 13 Then he said to the man, Stretch out your hand. And nthe man stretched it out, and it was restored, healthy like the other. 14 But the Pharisees went out and conspired against him, how to destroy him.

God's Chosen Servant

15 Jesus, aware of this, owithdrew from there. And pmany followed him, and he healed them all 16 and qordered them not to make him known. 17 rThis was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah:

18  sBehold, my tservant whom I have chosen,

my beloved with whom my soul is well pleased.

uI will put my Spirit upon him,

and he will proclaim justice to the Gentiles.

19  He will not quarrel or cry aloud,

nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets;

20  a bruised reed he will not break,

and a smoldering wick he will not quench,

until he brings justice to victory;

21  vand in his name the Gentiles will hope.

Blasphemy Against the Holy Spirit

22 wThen a demon-oppressed man who was blind and mute was brought to him, and he healed him, so that the man spoke and saw. 23 xAnd all the people were amazed, and said, xCan this be the Son of David? 24 But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, yIt is only by Beelzebul, the prince of demons, that this man casts out demons. 25 zKnowing their thoughts, ahe said to them, Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and no city or house divided against itself will stand. 26 And if Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then will his kingdom stand? 27 And if I cast out demons by Beelzebul, bby whom do cyour sons cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges. 28 But if it is dby the Spirit of God that I cast out demons, then ethe kingdom of God has come upon you. 29 Or fhow can someone enter a strong man's house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man? Then indeed ghe may plunder his house. 30 hWhoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters. 31 iTherefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven people, but jthe blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. 32 And whoever speaks a word kagainst the Son of Man lwill be forgiven, but jwhoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in mthis age or in the age to come.

A Tree Is Known by Its Fruit

33 nEither make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad, ofor the tree is known by its fruit. 34 pYou brood of vipers! How can you speak good, qwhen you are evil? rFor out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. 35 rThe good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. 36 I tell you, son the day of judgment tpeople will give account for uevery careless word they speak, 37 for vby your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.

The Sign of Jonah

38 Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered him, saying, Teacher, wwe wish to see a sign from you. 39 But he answered them, xAn evil and yadulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. 40 For zjust as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, aso will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. 41 bThe men of Nineveh will rise up at the judgment with this generation and ccondemn it, for dthey repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, esomething greater than Jonah is here. 42 fThe queen of the South will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, esomething greater than Solomon is here.

Return of an Unclean Spirit

43 When gthe unclean spirit has gone out of a person, it passes through hwaterless places seeking rest, but finds none. 44 Then it says, I will return to my house from which I came. And when it comes, it finds the house empty, swept, and put in order. 45 Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they enter and dwell there, and ithe last state of that person is worse than the first. So also will it be with this jevil generation.

Jesus' Mother and Brothers

46 While he was still speaking to the people, behold, khis mother and his lbrothers1 stood outside, asking to speak to him.2 48 But he replied to the man who told him, Who is my mother, and who are my brothers? 49 And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, Here are my mother and my brothers! 50 For mwhoever ndoes the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.

The Parable of the Sower

13 That same day Jesus went out of the house oand sat beside the sea. And great crowds gathered about him, pso that he got into a boat and sat down. And the whole crowd stood on the beach. And qhe told them many things in parables, saying: rA sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, but swhen the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, tthey withered away. Other seeds fell among uthorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some va hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. wHe who has ears,1 let him hear.

The Purpose of the Parables

10 Then the disciples came and said to him, Why do you speak to them in parables? 11 And he answered them, xTo you it has been given to know ythe secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. 12 zFor to the one who has, more will be given, and he will have an abundance, but from the one who has not, aeven what he has will be taken away. 13 This is why I speak to them in parables, because bseeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, cnor do they understand. 14 Indeed, in their case the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled that says:

dYou will indeed hear but never understand,

and you will indeed see but never perceive.

15  For this people's heart has grown dull,

and with their ears ethey can barely hear,

and ftheir eyes they have closed,

lest they should see with their eyes

and hear with their ears

and gunderstand with their heart

and hturn, and I would heal them.

16 But iblessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear. 17 iFor truly, I say to you, jmany prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.

The Parable of the Sower Explained

18 kHear then the parable of the sower: 19 When anyone hears the word of lthe kingdom and mdoes not understand it, nthe evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path. 20 As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately oreceives it with joy, 21 yet he has no root in himself, but pendures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately qhe falls away.2 22 As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but rthe cares of sthe world and tthe deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 23 As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and munderstands it. He indeed ubears fruit and yields, in one case va hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.

The Parable of the Weeds

24 He put another parable before them, saying, wThe kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field, 25 but while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds3 among the wheat and went away. 26 So when the plants came up and bore grain, then the weeds appeared also. 27 And the servants4 of the master of the house came and said to him, Master, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have weeds? 28 He said to them, An enemy has done this. So the servants said to him, Then do you want us to go and gather them? 29 But he said, xNo, lest in gathering the weeds you root up the wheat along with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest, and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, yGather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.

The Mustard Seed and the Leaven

31 He put another parable before them, saying, zThe kingdom of heaven is like aa grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. 32 It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.

33 He told them another parable. bThe kingdom of heaven is like leaven that a woman took and hid in cthree measures of flour, till it was dall leavened.

Prophecy and Parables

34 eAll these things Jesus said to the crowds in parables; indeed, he said nothing to them without a parable. 35 This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet:5

fI will open my mouth in parables;

gI will utter what has been hidden hsince the foundation of the world.

The Parable of the Weeds Explained

36 Then he left the crowds and went into ithe house. And his disciples came to him, saying, jExplain to us the parable of the weeds of the field. 37 He answered, The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 The field is the world, and the good seed is kthe sons of the kingdom. The weeds are lthe sons of the evil one, 39 and the enemy who sowed them is the devil. mThe harvest is nthe end of the age, and the reapers are angels. 40 Just as the weeds oare gathered and burned with fire, so will it be at nthe end of the age. 41 pThe Son of Man will send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all qcauses of sin and rall law-breakers, 42 sand throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place tthere will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then uthe righteous will shine like the sun vin the kingdom of their Father. wHe who has ears, let him hear.

The Parable of the Hidden Treasure

44 The kingdom of heaven xis like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy yhe goes and sells all that he has and zbuys that field.

The Parable of the Pearl of Great Value

45 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, 46 who, on finding aone pearl of great value, ywent and sold all that he had and zbought it.

The Parable of the Net

47 Again, the kingdom of heaven is blike a net that was thrown into the sea and cgathered fish of every kind. 48 When it was full, dmen drew it ashore and sat down and sorted the good into containers but threw away the bad. 49 So it will be at ethe end of the age. The angels will come out and fseparate the evil from the righteous 50 gand throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place gthere will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

New and Old Treasures

51 hHave you understood all these things? They said to him, Yes. 52 And he said to them, Therefore every iscribe jwho has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like a master of a house, who kbrings out of his treasure what is new and what is old.

Jesus Rejected at Nazareth

53 And when Jesus had finished these parables, he went away from there, 54 land coming to mhis hometown nhe taught them in their synagogue, so that othey were astonished, and said, Where did this man get this wisdom and these mighty works? 55 pIs not this qthe carpenter's son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not rhis brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? 56 And are not all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all these things? 57 And sthey took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, tA prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and in his own household. 58 And he did not do many mighty works there, ubecause of their unbelief.

The Death of John the Baptist

14 vAt that time wHerod the tetrarch heard about the fame of Jesus, and he said to his servants, xThis is John the Baptist. He has been raised from the dead; that is why these miraculous powers are at work in him. For yHerod had seized John and bound him and zput him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip's wife,1 because John had been saying to him, aIt is not lawful for you to have her. And though he wanted to put him to death, bhe feared the people, because they held him to be ca prophet. But when Herod's dbirthday came, the daughter of Herodias danced before the company and pleased Herod, so that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she might ask. Prompted by her mother, she said, Give me the head of John the Baptist here on a platter. And the king was sorry, but because of his oaths and his guests he commanded it to be given. 10 He sent and had John beheaded in the prison, 11 and his head was brought on a platter and given to the girl, and she brought it to her mother. 12 And ehis disciples came and took the body and buried it, and they went and told Jesus.

Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand

13 Now when Jesus heard this, fhe withdrew from there in a boat to a desolate place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. 14 When he went ashore he gsaw a great crowd, and ghe had compassion on them and healed their sick. 15 Now when it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, This is a desolate place, and the day is now over; hsend the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves. 16 But Jesus said, They need not go away; iyou give them something to eat. 17 They said to him, We have only five loaves here and two fish. 18 And he said, Bring them here to me. 19 Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass, and taking the five loaves and the two fish, jhe looked up to heaven and ksaid a blessing. Then he broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 20 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over. 21 And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.

Jesus Walks on the Water

22 lImmediately he mmade the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. 23 And after he had dismissed the crowds, nhe went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When oevening came, he was there alone, 24 but the boat by this time was a long way2 from the land,3 beaten by the waves, for the wind was against them. 25 And lin the fourth watch of the night4 he came to them, walking on the sea. 26 But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, pthey were terrified, and said, It is a ghost! and they cried out in fear. 27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, qTake heart; it is I. qDo not be afraid.

28 And Peter answered him, Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water. 29 He said, Come. So Peter got out of the boat and rwalked on the water and came to Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind,5 he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, sLord, save me. 31 Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, tO you of little faith, why did you udoubt? 32 And when they got into the boat, sthe wind ceased. 33 And vthose in the boat wworshiped him, saying, xTruly you are ythe Son of God.

Jesus Heals the Sick in Gennesaret

34 zAnd when they had crossed over, they came to land at aGennesaret. 35 And when the men of that place recognized him, they sent around to all that region and bbrought to him all who were sick 36 and implored him that they might only touch cthe fringe of his garment. And das many as touched it were made well.

Traditions and Commandments

15 eThen Pharisees and fscribes came to Jesus ffrom Jerusalem and said, gWhy do your disciples break hthe tradition of the elders? jFor they do not wash their hands when they eat. He answered them, And why do you break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition? For God commanded, kHonor your father and your mother, and, lWhoever reviles father or mother must surely die. But you say, If anyone tells his father or his mother, What you would have gained from me is given to God,1 he need not honor his father. So for the sake of your tradition you have mmade void the word2 of God. nYou hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy of you, when he said:

oThis people honors me with their lips,

but their heart is far from me;

in vain do they worship me,

teaching as pdoctrines the commandments of men.

What Defiles a Person

10 And he called the people to him and said to them, qHear and understand: 11 rit is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but what comes out of the mouth; this defiles a person. 12 Then the disciples came and said to him, Do you know that the Pharisees were soffended when they heard this saying? 13 He answered, tEvery plant that my heavenly Father has not planted uwill be rooted up. 14 Let them alone; vthey are blind guides.3 And wif the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit. 15 But Peter said to him, xExplain the parable to us. 16 And he said, yAre you also still without understanding? 17 Do you not see that zwhatever goes into the mouth passes into the stomach and is expelled?4 18 But awhat comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. 19 For out of the heart come bevil thoughts, cmurder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, dslander. 20 eThese are what defile a person. But fto eat with unwashed hands does not defile anyone.

The Faith of a Canaanite Woman

21 gAnd Jesus went away from there and withdrew to the district of Tyre and Sidon. 22 And behold, ha Canaanite woman from that region came out and was crying, iHave mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely oppressed by a demon. 23 But he did not answer her a word. And his disciples came and begged him, saying, jSend her away, for she is crying out after us. 24 He answered, kI was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 25 But she came and lknelt before him, saying, Lord, help me. 26 And he answered, It is not right to take the children's bread and mthrow it to the dogs. 27 She said, Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat nthe crumbs that fall from their masters' table. 28 Then Jesus answered her, O woman, ogreat is your faith! pBe it done for you as you desire. qAnd her daughter was phealed instantly.5

Jesus Heals Many

29 rJesus went on from there and walked sbeside the Sea of Galilee. And he twent up on the mountain and sat down there. 30 And great crowds came to him, bringing with them uthe lame, the blind, the crippled, the mute, and many others, and they put them at his feet, and he healed them, 31 vso that the crowd wondered, when they saw the mute speaking, wthe crippled healthy, the lame walking, and the blind seeing. And xthey glorified ythe God of Israel.

Jesus Feeds the Four Thousand

32 zThen Jesus called his disciples to him and said, aI have compassion on the crowd because they have been with me now three days and have nothing to eat. And I am unwilling to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way. 33 And the disciples said to him, Where are we to get enough bread in such a desolate place to feed so great a crowd? 34 And Jesus said to them, How many loaves do you have? They said, bSeven, and a few small fish. 35 And directing the crowd to sit down on the ground, 36 he took the seven loaves and the fish, and chaving given thanks he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 37 And dthey all ate and were satisfied. And they took up seven baskets full of the broken pieces left over. 38 Those who ate were four thousand men, besides women and children. 39 And after sending away the crowds, he got into the boat and went to the region of eMagadan.