Saturday, 30 December 2017

Day 306: Mark 18 - 20

Chapter 18

The Parable of the Widow and the Judge

1: Then Jesus told them a parable about their need to pray always and not to lose heart. 
2: He said, "In a certain city there was a judge, who neither feared God nor had respect for people.
 3: In that city there was a widow who kept coming to him and saying, "Grant me justice against my opponent.'
4: For a while he refused; but later he said to himself, "Though I have no fear of God and no respect for anyone,
5: yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will grant her justice, so that she may not wear me out by continually coming.' " 
6: And the Lord said, "Listen to what the unjust judge says. 
7: And will not God grant justice to his chosen ones who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long in helping them? 
8: I tell you, he will quickly grant justice to them. And yet, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?"


The Parable of the Pharisee and the Publican

9: He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous and regarded others with contempt: 
10: "Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 
11: The Pharisee, standing by himself, was praying thus, "God, I thank you that I am not like other people: thieves, rogues, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 
12: I fast twice a week; I give a tenth of all my income.' 
13: But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even look up to heaven, but was beating his breast and saying, "God, be merciful to me, a sinner!'
14: I tell you, this man went down to his home justified rather than the other; for all who exalt themselves will be humbled, but all who humble themselves will be exalted."


Jesus Blesses Little Children

15: People were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them; and when the disciples saw it, they sternly ordered them not to do it. 
16: But Jesus called for them and said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. 
17: Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it."


The Rich Young Ruler

18: A certain ruler asked him, "Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" 
19: Jesus said to him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. 
20: You know the commandments: "You shall not commit adultery; You shall not murder; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; Honor your father and mother.' " 
21: He replied, "I have kept all these since my youth." 
22: When Jesus heard this, he said to him, "There is still one thing lacking. Sell all that you own and distribute the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me." 
23: But when he heard this, he became sad; for he was very rich. 
24: Jesus looked at him and said, "How hard it is for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God! 
25: Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God." 
26: Those who heard it said, "Then who can be saved?" 
27: He replied, "What is impossible for mortals is possible for God." 
28: Then Peter said, "Look, we have left our homes and followed you." 
29: And he said to them, "Truly I tell you, there is no one who has left house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, 
30: who will not get back very much more in this age, and in the age to come eternal life."

Jesus Foretells His Death a Third Time

31: Then he took the twelve aside and said to them, "See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished. 
32: For he will be handed over to the Gentiles; and he will be mocked and insulted and spat upon. 
33: After they have flogged him, they will kill him, and on the third day he will rise again." 
34: But they understood nothing about all these things; in fact, what he said was hidden from them, and they did not grasp what was said.


A Blind Beggar Healed near Jericho

35: As he approached Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. 
36: When he heard a crowd going by, he asked what was happening.
37: They told him, "Jesus of Nazareth is passing by." 
38: Then he shouted, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!" 
39: Those who were in front sternly ordered him to be quiet; but he shouted even more loudly, "Son of David, have mercy on me!" 
40: Jesus stood still and ordered the man to be brought to him; and when he came near, he asked him, 
41: "What do you want me to do for you?" He said, "Lord, let me see again."
42: Jesus said to him, "Receive your sight; your faith has saved you." 
43: Immediately he regained his sight and followed him, glorifying God; and all the people, when they saw it, praised God.

Chapter 19

Jesus and Zaccheus

1: He entered Jericho and was passing through it. 
2: A man was there named Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was rich. 
3: He was trying to see who Jesus was, but on account of the crowd he could not, because he was short in stature. 
4: So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree to see him, because he was going to pass that way. 
5: When Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, "Zacchaeus, hurry and come down; for I must stay at your house today." 
6: So he hurried down and was happy to welcome him. 
7: All who saw it began to grumble and said, "He has gone to be the guest of one who is a sinner." 
8: Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, "Look, half of my possessions, Lord, I will give to the poor; and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will pay back four times as much." 
9: Then Jesus said to him, "Today salvation has come to this house, because he too is a son of Abraham. 
10: For the Son of Man came to seek out and to save the lost."


The Parable of the Ten Pounds

11: As they were listening to this, he went on to tell a parable, because he was near Jerusalem, and because they supposed that the kingdom of God was to appear immediately. 
12: So he said, "A nobleman went to a distant country to get royal power for himself and then return. 
13: He summoned ten of his slaves, and gave them ten pounds, and said to them, "Do business with these until I come back.' 
14: But the citizens of his country hated him and sent a delegation after him, saying, "We do not want this man to rule over us.' 
15: When he returned, having received royal power, he ordered these slaves, to whom he had given the money, to be summoned so that he might find out what they had gained by trading. 
16: The first came forward and said, "Lord, your pound has made ten more pounds.' 
17: He said to him, "Well done, good slave! Because you have been trustworthy in a very small thing, take charge of ten cities.' 
18: Then the second came, saying, "Lord, your pound has made five pounds.' 
19: He said to him, "And you, rule over five cities.' 
20: Then the other came, saying, "Lord, here is your pound. I wrapped it up in a piece of cloth, 
21: for I was afraid of you, because you are a harsh man; you take what you did not deposit, and reap what you did not sow.' 
22: He said to him, "I will judge you by your own words, you wicked slave! You knew, did you, that I was a harsh man, taking what I did not deposit and reaping what I did not sow?
23: Why then did you not put my money into the bank? Then when I returned, I could have collected it with interest.' 
24: He said to the bystanders, "Take the pound from him and give it to the one who has ten pounds.' 
25: (And they said to him, "Lord, he has ten pounds!') 
26: "I tell you, to all those who have, more will be given; but from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away. 
27: But as for these enemies of mine who did not want me to be king over them-bring them here and slaughter them in my presence.' "


The Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem

28: After he had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. 
29: When he had come near Bethphage and Bethany, at the place called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of the disciples, 
30: saying, "Go into the village ahead of you, and as you enter it you will find tied there a colt that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 
31: If anyone asks you, "Why are you untying it?' just say this, "The Lord needs it.' " 
32: So those who were sent departed and found it as he had told them. 
33: As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, "Why are you untying the colt?" 
34: They said, "The Lord needs it." 
35: Then they brought it to Jesus; and after throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. 
36: As he rode along, people kept spreading their cloaks on the road.
37: As he was now approaching the path down from the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the deeds of power that they had seen, 
38: saying, "Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!" 
39: Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, "Teacher, order your disciples to stop." 
40: He answered, "I tell you, if these were silent, the stones would shout out."
41: As he came near and saw the city, he wept over it, 
42: saying, "If you, even you, had only recognized on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. 
43: Indeed, the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up ramparts around you and surround you, and hem you in on every side. 
44: They will crush you to the ground, you and your children within you, and they will not leave within you one stone upon another; because you did not recognize the time of your visitation from God."


The Cleansing of the Temple

45: Then he entered the temple and began to drive out those who were selling things there; 
46: and he said, "It is written, "My house shall be a house of prayer'; but you have made it a den of robbers." 
47: Every day he was teaching in the temple. The chief priests, the scribes, and the leaders of the people kept looking for a way to kill him; 
48: but they did not find anything they could do, for all the people were spellbound by what they heard.

Chapter 20

Jesus' Authority Questioned

1: One day, as he was teaching the people in the temple and telling the good news, the chief priests and the scribes came with the elders 
2: and said to him, "Tell us, by what authority are you doing these things? Who is it who gave you this authority?"
3: He answered them, "I will also ask you a question, and you tell me: 
4: Did the baptism of John come from heaven, or was it of human origin?" 
5: They discussed it with one another, saying, "If we say, "From heaven,' he will say, "Why did you not believe him?' 
6: But if we say, "Of human origin,' all the people will stone us; for they are convinced that John was a prophet." 
7: So they answered that they did not know where it came from. 
8: Then Jesus said to them, "Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things."

The Parable of the Wicked Husbandmen

9: He began to tell the people this parable: "A man planted a vineyard, and leased it to tenants, and went to another country for a long time. 
10: When the season came, he sent a slave to the tenants in order that they might give him his share of the produce of the vineyard; but the tenants beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 
11: Next he sent another slave; that one also they beat and insulted and sent away empty-handed. 
12: And he sent still a third; this one also they wounded and threw out. 
13: Then the owner of the vineyard said, "What shall I do? I will send my beloved son; perhaps they will respect him.' 
14: But when the tenants saw him, they discussed it among themselves and said, "This is the heir; let us kill him so that the inheritance may be ours.' 
15: So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. What then will the owner of the vineyard do to them? 
16: He will come and destroy those tenants and give the vineyard to others." When they heard this, they said, "Heaven forbid!" 
17: But he looked at them and said, "What then does this text mean: "The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone'? 
18: Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces; and it will crush anyone on whom it falls."


Paying Taxes to Caesar

19: When the scribes and chief priests realized that he had told this parable against them, they wanted to lay hands on him at that very hour, but they feared the people.
20: So they watched him and sent spies who pretended to be honest, in order to trap him by what he said, so as to hand him over to the jurisdiction and authority of the governor. 
21: So they asked him, "Teacher, we know that you are right in what you say and teach, and you show deference to no one, but teach the way of God in accordance with truth. 
22: Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to the emperor, or not?" 
23: But he perceived their craftiness and said to them, 
24: "Show me a denarius. Whose head and whose title does it bear?" They said, "The emperor's." 
25: He said to them, "Then give to the emperor the things that are the emperor's, and to God the things that are God's." 
26: And they were not able in the presence of the people to trap him by what he said; and being amazed by his answer, they became silent.


The Question about the Resurrection

27: Some Sadducees, those who say there is no resurrection, came to him 
28: and asked him a question, "Teacher, Moses wrote for us that if a man's brother dies, leaving a wife but no children, the man shall marry the widow and raise up children for his brother. 
29: Now there were seven brothers; the first married, and died childless; 
30: then the second 
31: and the third married her, and so in the same way all seven died childless. 
32: Finally the woman also died. 
33: In the resurrection, therefore, whose wife will the woman be? For the seven had married her." 
34: Jesus said to them, "Those who belong to this age marry and are given in marriage; 
35: but those who are considered worthy of a place in that age and in the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. 
36: Indeed they cannot die anymore, because they are like angels and are children of God, being children of the resurrection. 
37: And the fact that the dead are raised Moses himself showed, in the story about the bush, where he speaks of the Lord as the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. 
38: Now he is God not of the dead, but of the living; for to him all of them are alive."
39: Then some of the scribes answered, "Teacher, you have spoken well." 40: For they no longer dared to ask him another question.


The Question about David's Son

41: Then he said to them, "How can they say that the Messiah is David's son? 
42: For David himself says in the book of Psalms, "The Lord said to my Lord, "Sit at my right hand, 
43: until I make your enemies your footstool." ' 
44: David thus calls him Lord; so how can he be his son?"


Jesus Denounces the Scribes

45: In the hearing of all the people he said to the disciples, 
46: "Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and love to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces, and to have the best seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets. 
47: They devour widows' houses and for the sake of appearance say long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation."

Day 305: Mark 15 - 17

Chapter 15

The Parable of the Lost Sheep

1: Now all the tax collectors and sinners were coming near to listen to him. 
2: And the Pharisees and the scribes were grumbling and saying, "This fellow welcomes sinners and eats with them." 
3: So he told them this parable: 
4: "Which one of you, having a hundred sheep and losing one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the one that is lost until he finds it? 
5: When he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders and rejoices. 
6: And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, "Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.' 
7: Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.


The Parable of the Lost Coin

8: "Or what woman having ten silver coins, if she loses one of them, does not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully until she finds it? 
9: When she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, "Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.' 
10: Just so, I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents."

The Parable of the Lost Son

11: Then Jesus said, "There was a man who had two sons. 
12: The younger of them said to his father, "Father, give me the share of the property that will belong to me.' So he divided his property between them. 
13: A few days later the younger son gathered all he had and traveled to a distant country, and there he squandered his property in dissolute living. 
14: When he had spent everything, a severe famine took place throughout that country, and he began to be in need. 
15: So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed the pigs. 
16: He would gladly have filled himself with the pods that the pigs were eating; and no one gave him anything. 
17: But when he came to himself he said, "How many of my father's hired hands have bread enough and to spare, but here I am dying of hunger! 
18: I will get up and go to my father, and I will say to him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; 
19: I am no longer worthy to be called your son; treat me like one of your hired hands." ' 
20: So he set off and went to his father. But while he was still far off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion; he ran and put his arms around him and kissed him. 
21: Then the son said to him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.' 
22: But the father said to his slaves, "Quickly, bring out a robe-the best one-and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 
23: And get the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate; 
24: for this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found!' And they began to celebrate. 
25: "Now his elder son was in the field; and when he came and approached the house, he heard music and dancing. 
26: He called one of the slaves and asked what was going on. 
27: He replied, "Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fatted calf, because he has got him back safe and sound.'
 28: Then he became angry and refused to go in. His father came out and began to plead with him. 
29: But he answered his father, "Listen! For all these years I have been working like a slave for you, and I have never disobeyed your command; yet you have never given me even a young goat so that I might celebrate with my friends. 
30: But when this son of yours came back, who has devoured your property with prostitutes, you killed the fatted calf for him!' 
31: Then the father said to him, "Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. 
32: But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead and has come to life; he was lost and has been found.' "

Chapter 16

The Parable of the Dishonest Steward

1: Then Jesus said to the disciples, "There was a rich man who had a manager, and charges were brought to him that this man was squandering his property.
2: So he summoned him and said to him, "What is this that I hear about you? Give me an accounting of your management, because you cannot be my manager any longer.' 
3: Then the manager said to himself, "What will I do, now that my master is taking the position away from me? I am not strong enough to dig, and I am ashamed to beg. 
4: I have decided what to do so that, when I am dismissed as manager, people may welcome me into their homes.' 
5: So, summoning his master's debtors one by one, he asked the first, "How much do you owe my master?' 
6: He answered, "A hundred jugs of olive oil.' He said to him, "Take your bill, sit down quickly, and make it fifty.' 
7: Then he asked another, "And how much do you owe?' He replied, "A hundred containers of wheat.' He said to him, "Take your bill and make it eighty.' 
8: And his master commended the dishonest manager because he had acted shrewdly; for the children of this age are more shrewd in dealing with their own generation than are the children of light.
 9: And I tell you, make friends for yourselves by means of dishonest wealth so that when it is gone, they may welcome you into the eternal homes. 
10: "Whoever is faithful in a very little is faithful also in much; and whoever is dishonest in a very little is dishonest also in much.
11: If then you have not been faithful with the dishonest wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches? 
12: And if you have not been faithful with what belongs to another, who will give you what is your own? 
13: No slave can serve two masters; for a slave will either hate the one and love the other, or be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth." 
14: The Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard all this, and they ridiculed him. 
15: So he said to them, "You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of others; but God knows your hearts; for what is prized by human beings is an abomination in the sight of God.


The Law and the Kingdom of God

16: "The law and the prophets were in effect until John came; since then the good news of the kingdom of God is proclaimed, and everyone tries to enter it by force. 
17: But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away, than for one stroke of a letter in the law to be dropped.


Jesus' Teaching on Divorce

18: "Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and whoever marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.


The Rich Man and Lazarus

19: "There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. 
20: And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, 
21: who longed to satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man's table; even the dogs would come and lick his sores. 
22: The poor man died and was carried away by the angels to be with Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried. 
23: In Hades, where he was being tormented, he looked up and saw Abraham far away with Lazarus by his side. 
24: He called out, "Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in agony in these flames.' 
25: But Abraham said, "Child, remember that during your lifetime you received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in agony. 
26: Besides all this, between you and us a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who might want to pass from here to you cannot do so, and no one can cross from there to us.' 
27: He said, "Then, father, I beg you to send him to my father's house- 
28: for I have five brothers-that he may warn them, so that they will not also come into this place of torment.' 
29: Abraham replied, "They have Moses and the prophets; they should listen to them.' 
30: He said, "No, father Abraham; but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.' 
31: He said to him, "If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.' "

Chapter 17

Causing to Sin

1: Jesus said to his disciples, "Occasions for stumbling are bound to come, but woe to anyone by whom they come! 
2: It would be better for you if a millstone were hung around your neck and you were thrown into the sea than for you to cause one of these little ones to stumble. 
3: Be on your guard! If another disciple sins, you must rebuke the offender, and if there is repentance, you must forgive. 
4: And if the same person sins against you seven times a day, and turns back to you seven times and says, "I repent,' you must forgive."

Increase Our Faith

5: The apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith!" 
6: The Lord replied, "If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, "Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it would obey you.


The Servant's Duty

7: "Who among you would say to your slave who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field, "Come here at once and take your place at the table'? 
8: Would you not rather say to him, "Prepare supper for me, put on your apron and serve me while I eat and drink; later you may eat and drink'? 
9: Do you thank the slave for doing what was commanded? 
10: So you also, when you have done all that you were ordered to do, say, "We are worthless slaves; we have done only what we ought to have done!' "


Jesus Cleanses Ten Lepers

11: On the way to Jerusalem Jesus was going through the region between Samaria and Galilee.
12: As he entered a village, ten lepers approached him. Keeping their distance, 
13: they called out, saying, "Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!" 
14: When he saw them, he said to them, "Go and show yourselves to the priests." And as they went, they were made clean. 
15: Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice. 
16: He prostrated himself at Jesus' feet and thanked him. And he was a Samaritan. 
17: Then Jesus asked, "Were not ten made clean? But the other nine, where are they? 
18: Was none of them found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?" 
19: Then he said to him, "Get up and go on your way; your faith has made you well."


The Coming of the Kingdom

20: Once Jesus was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God was coming, and he answered, "The kingdom of God is not coming with things that can be observed; 
21: nor will they say, "Look, here it is!' or "There it is!' For, in fact, the kingdom of God is among you." 
22: Then he said to the disciples, "The days are coming when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of Man, and you will not see it. 
23: They will say to you, "Look there!' or "Look here!' Do not go, do not set off in pursuit. 
24: For as the lightning flashes and lights up the sky from one side to the other, so will the Son of Man be in his day. 
25: But first he must endure much suffering and be rejected by this generation. 
26: Just as it was in the days of Noah, so too it will be in the days of the Son of Man. 
27: They were eating and drinking, and marrying and being given in marriage, until the day Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed all of them. 
28: Likewise, just as it was in the days of Lot: they were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building, 
29: but on the day that Lot left Sodom, it rained fire and sulfur from heaven and destroyed all of them 
30: -it will be like that on the day that the Son of Man is revealed. 
31: On that day, anyone on the housetop who has belongings in the house must not come down to take them away; and likewise anyone in the field must not turn back.
 32: Remember Lot's wife. 
33: Those who try to make their life secure will lose it, but those who lose their life will keep it. 
34: I tell you, on that night there will be two in one bed; one will be taken and the other left. 
35: There will be two women grinding meal together; one will be taken and the other left." 
36:  37: Then they asked him, "Where, Lord?" He said to them, "Where the corpse is, there the vultures will gather."