Jesus Heals a Boy with an Unclean Spirit
37 When they came down off the mountain the next day, a big crowd was there to meet them. 38 A man called from out of the crowd, "Please, please, Teacher, take a look at my son. He's my only child. 39 Often a spirit seizes him. Suddenly he's screaming, thrown into convulsions, his mouth foaming. And then it beats him black and blue before it leaves. 40 I asked your disciples to deliver him but they couldn't." 41 Jesus said, "What a generation! No sense of God! No focus to your lives! How many times do I have to go over these things? How much longer do I have to put up with this? Bring your son here." 42 While he was coming, the demon slammed him to the ground and threw him into convulsions. Jesus stepped in, ordered the vile spirit gone, healed the boy, and handed him back to his father.
43 They all shook their heads in wonder, astonished at God's greatness, God's majestic greatness.
Jesus Again Foretells His Death
44 "Treasure and ponder each of these next words: The Son of Man is about to be betrayed into human hands." 45 They didn't get what he was saying. It was like he was speaking a foreign language and they couldn't make heads or tails of it. But they were embarrassed to ask him what he meant.
Who Is the Greatest?
46 They started arguing over which of them would be most famous. 47 When Jesus realized how much this mattered to them, he brought a child to his side. 48 "Whoever accepts this child as if the child were me, accepts me," he said. "And whoever accepts me, accepts the One who sent me. You become great by accepting, not asserting. Your spirit, not your size, makes the difference."
He That Is Not against Us Is for Us
Jesus Rebukes James and John
51 When it came close to the time for his Ascension, he gathered up his courage and steeled himself for the journey to Jerusalem. 52 He sent messengers on ahead. They came to a Samaritan village to make arrangements for his hospitality. 53 But when the Samaritans learned that his destination was Jerusalem, they refused hospitality. 54 When the disciples James and John learned of it, they said, "Master, do you want us to call a bolt of lightning down out of the sky and incinerate them?" 55 Jesus turned on them: "Of course not!" 56 And they traveled on to another village.
The Would-be Followers of Jesus
57 On the road someone asked if he could go along. "I'll go with you, wherever," he said. 58 Jesus was curt: "Are you ready to rough it? We're not staying in the best inns, you know." 59 Jesus said to another, "Follow me." He said, "Certainly, but first excuse me for a couple of days, please. I have to make arrangements for my father's funeral." 60 Jesus refused. "First things first. Your business is life, not death. And life is urgent: Announce God's kingdom!" 61 Then another said, "I'm ready to follow you, Master, but first excuse me while I get things straightened out at home." 62 Jesus said, "No procrastination. No backward looks. You can't put God's kingdom off till tomorrow. Seize the day."