Matthew 15-17 Revised Standard Version

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The Things That Defile

15 1  Then Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, 2  "Why do your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat." 3  He answered them, "And why do you transgress the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition? 4  For God commanded, 'Honor your father and your mother,' and, 'He who speaks evil of father or mother, let him surely die.' 5  But you say, 'If any one tells his father or his mother, What you would have gained from me is given to God, he need not honor his father.' 6  So, for the sake of your tradition, you have made void the word of God. 7  You hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy of you, when he said: 8  'This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; 9  in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the precepts of men.'"

10  And he called the people to him and said to them, "Hear and understand: 11  not what goes into the mouth defiles a man, but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man." 12  Then the disciples came and said to him, "Do you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this saying?" 13  He answered, "Every plant which my heavenly Father has not planted will be rooted up. 14  Let them alone; they are blind guides. And if a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit." 15  But Peter said to him, "Explain the parable to us." 16  And he said, "Are you also still without understanding? 17  Do you not see that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the stomach, and so passes on? 18  But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a man. 19  For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander. 20  These are what defile a man; but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man."

The Canaanite Woman's Faith

21  And Jesus went away from there and withdrew to the district of Tyre and Sidon. 22  And behold, a Canaanite woman from that region came out and cried, "Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely possessed by a demon." 23  But he did not answer her a word. And his disciples came and begged him, saying, "Send her away, for she is crying after us." 24  He answered, "I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." 25  But she came and knelt before him, saying, "Lord, help me." 26  And he answered, "It is not fair to take the children's bread and throw it to the dogs." 27  She said, "Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters' table." 28  Then Jesus answered her, "O woman, great is your faith! Be it done for you as you desire." And her daughter was healed instantly.

Jesus Heals Many People

29  And Jesus went on from there and passed along the Sea of Galilee. And he went up on the mountain, and sat down there. 30  And great crowds came to him, bringing with them the lame, the maimed, the blind, the dumb, and many others, and they put them at his feet, and he healed them, 31  so that the throng wondered, when they saw the dumb speaking, the maimed whole, the lame walking, and the blind seeing; and they glorified the God of Israel.

The Feeding of the Four Thousand

32  Then Jesus called his disciples to him and said, "I 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 bread enough in the desert to feed so great a crowd?" 34  And Jesus said to them, "How many loaves have you?" They said, "Seven, and a few small fish." 35  And commanding the crowd to sit down on the ground, 36  he took the seven loaves and the fish, and having given thanks he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 37  And they 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 sending away the crowds, he got into the boat and went to the region of Mag'adan.

The Demand for a Sign

16 1  And the Pharisees and Sad'ducees came, and to test him they asked him to show them a sign from heaven. 2  He answered them, "When it is evening, you say, 'It will be fair weather; for the sky is red.' 3  And in the morning, 'It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and threatening.' You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. 4  An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of Jonah." So he left them and departed.

The Leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees

5  When the disciples reached the other side, they had forgotten to bring any bread. 6  Jesus said to them, "Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sad'ducees." 7  And they discussed it among themselves, saying, "We brought no bread." 8  But Jesus, aware of this, said, "O men of little faith, why do you discuss among yourselves the fact that you have no bread? 9  Do you not yet perceive? Do you not remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? 10  Or the seven loaves of the four thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? 11  How is it that you fail to perceive that I did not speak about bread? Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sad'ducees." 12  Then they understood that he did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sad'ducees.

Peter's Confession

13  Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesare'a Philip'pi, he asked his disciples, "Who do men say that the Son of man is?" 14  And they said, "Some say John the Baptist, others say Eli'jah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets." 15  He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?" 16  Simon Peter replied, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." 17  And Jesus answered him, "Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. 18  And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. 19  I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." 20  Then he strictly charged the disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ.

Jesus Foretells His Death

21  From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. 22  And Peter took him and began to rebuke him, saying, "God forbid, Lord! This shall never happen to you." 23  But he turned and said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me; for you are not on the side of God, but of men."

24  Then Jesus told his disciples, "If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25  For whoever would save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. 26  For what will it profit a man, if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life? Or what shall a man give in return for his life? 27  For the Son of man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay every man for what he has done. 28  Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom."

The Transfiguration

17 1  And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain apart. 2  And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his garments became white as light. 3  And behold, there appeared to them Moses and Eli'jah, talking with him. 4  And Peter said to Jesus, "Lord, it is well that we are here; if you wish, I will make three booths here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Eli'jah." 5  He was still speaking, when lo, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him." 6  When the disciples heard this, they fell on their faces, and were filled with awe. 7  But Jesus came and touched them, saying, "Rise, and have no fear." 8  And when they lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only. 9  And as they were coming down the mountain, Jesus commanded them, "Tell no one the vision, until the Son of man is raised from the dead." 10  And the disciples asked him, "Then why do the scribes say that first Eli'jah must come?" 11  He replied, "Eli'jah does come, and he is to restore all things; 12  but I tell you that Eli'jah has already come, and they did not know him, but did to him whatever they pleased. So also the Son of man will suffer at their hands." 13  Then the disciples understood that he was speaking to them of John the Baptist.

Jesus Heals a Boy with an Unclean Spirit

14  And when they came to the crowd, a man came up to him and kneeling before him said, 15  "Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and he suffers terribly; for often he falls into the fire, and often into the water. 16  And I brought him to your disciples, and they could not heal him." 17  And Jesus answered, "O faithless and perverse generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him here to me." 18  And Jesus rebuked him, and the demon came out of him, and the boy was cured instantly. 19  Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, "Why could we not cast it out?" 20  He said to them, "Because of your little faith. For truly, I say to you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you." 21  * [No text]

Jesus Again Foretells His Death

22  As they were gathering in Galilee, Jesus said to them, "The Son of man is to be delivered into the hands of men, 23  and they will kill him, and he will be raised on the third day." And they were greatly distressed.

Payment of the Tribute Money

24  When they came to Caper'na-um, the collectors of the half-shekel tax went up to Peter and said, "Does not your teacher pay the tax?" 25  He said, "Yes." And when he came home, Jesus spoke to him first, saying, "What do you think, Simon? From whom do kings of the earth take toll or tribute? From their sons or from others?" 26  And when he said, "From others," Jesus said to him, "Then the sons are free. 27  However, not to give offense to them, go to the sea and cast a hook, and take the first fish that comes up, and when you open its mouth you will find a shekel; take that and give it to them for me and for yourself."

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