1. At that time Jesus went through the cornfields one Sabbath day. His disciples were hungry and began to pick ears of corn and eat them.
2. The Pharisees noticed it and said to him, 'Look, your disciples are doing something that is forbidden on the Sabbath.'
3. But he said to them, 'Have you not read what David did when he and his followers were hungry-
4. how he went into the house of God and they ate the loaves of the offering although neither he nor his followers were permitted to eat them, but only the priests?
5. Or again, have you not read in the Law that on the Sabbath day the Temple priests break the Sabbath without committing any fault?
6. Now here, I tell you, is something greater than the Temple.
7. And if you had understood the meaning of the words: Mercy is what pleases me, not sacrifice, you would not have condemned the blameless.
8. For the Son of man is master of the Sabbath.'
9. He moved on from there and went to their synagogue;
10. now a man was there with a withered hand. They asked him, 'Is it permitted to cure somebody on the Sabbath day?' hoping for something to charge him with.
11. But he said to them, 'If any one of you here had only one sheep and it fell down a hole on the Sabbath day, would he not get hold of it and lift it out?
12. Now a man is far more important than a sheep, so it follows that it is permitted on the Sabbath day to do good.'
13. Then he said to the man, 'Stretch out your hand.' He stretched it out and his hand was restored, as sound as the other one.
14. At this the Pharisees went out and began to plot against him, discussing how to destroy him.
15. Jesus knew this and withdrew from the district. Many followed him and he cured them all
16. but warned them not to make him known.
17. This was to fulfil what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah:
18. Look! My servant whom I have chosen, my beloved, in whom my soul delights, I will send my Spirit upon him, and he will present judgement to the nations;
19. he will not brawl or cry out, his voice is not heard in the streets,
20. he will not break the crushed reed, or snuff the faltering wick,
21. until he has made judgement victorious; in him the nations will put their hope.
22. Then they brought to him a blind and dumb demoniac; and he cured him, so that the dumb man could speak and see.
23. All the people were astounded and said, 'Can this be the son of David?'
24. But when the Pharisees heard this they said, 'The man drives out devils only through Beelzebul, the chief of the devils.'
25. Knowing what was in their minds he said to them, 'Every kingdom divided against itself is heading for ruin; and no town, no household divided against itself can last.
26. Now if Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself; so how can his kingdom last?
27. And if it is through Beelzebul that I drive devils out, through whom do your own experts drive them out? They shall be your judges, then.
28. But if it is through the Spirit of God that I drive out devils, then be sure that the kingdom of God has caught you unawares.
29. 'Or again, how can anyone make his way into a strong man's house and plunder his property unless he has first tied up the strong man? Only then can he plunder his house.
30. 'Anyone who is not with me is against me, and anyone who does not gather in with me throws away.
31. And so I tell you, every human sin and blasphemy will be forgiven, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.
32. And anyone who says a word against the Son of man will be forgiven; but no one who speaks against the Holy Spirit will be forgiven either in this world or in the next.
33. 'Make a tree sound and its fruit will be sound; make a tree rotten and its fruit will be rotten. For the tree can be told by its fruit.
34. You brood of vipers, how can your speech be good when you are evil? For words flow out of what fills the heart.
35. Good people draw good things from their store of goodness; bad people draw bad things from their store of badness.
36. So I tell you this, that for every unfounded word people utter they will answer on Judgement Day,
37. since it is by your words you will be justified, and by your words condemned.'
38. Then some of the scribes and Pharisees spoke up. 'Master,' they said, 'we should like to see a sign from you.'
39. He replied, 'It is an evil and unfaithful generation that asks for a sign! The only sign it will be given is the sign of the prophet Jonah.
40. For as Jonah remained in the belly of the sea-monster for three days and three nights, so will the Son of man be in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights.
41. On Judgement Day the men of Nineveh will appear against this generation and they will be its condemnation, because when Jonah preached they repented; and look, there is something greater than Jonah here.
42. On Judgement Day the Queen of the South will appear against this generation and be its condemnation, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and look, there is something greater than Solomon here.
43. 'When an unclean spirit goes out of someone it wanders through waterless country looking for a place to rest, and cannot find one.
44. Then it says, "I will return to the home I came from." But on arrival, finding it unoccupied, swept and tidied,
45. it then goes off and collects seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and set up house there, and so that person ends up worse off than before. That is what will happen to this wicked generation.'
46. He was still speaking to the crowds when suddenly his mother and his brothers were standing outside and were anxious to have a word with him.
47. still speaking to the crowds when suddenly his mother and his brothers were standing outside and were anxious to have a word with him.
48. But to the man who told him this Jesus replied, 'Who is my mother? Who are my brothers?'
49. And stretching out his hand towards his disciples he said, 'Here are my mother and my brothers.
50. Anyone who does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.'