Matthew 9

Afterwards Jesus got into a boat, and, crossing over, came to his own city. There some people brought to him a paralysed man on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the man: “Courage, child! Your sins are forgiven.” Then some of the teachers of the law said to themselves: “This man is blaspheming!” Knowing their thoughts, Jesus exclaimed: “Why do your cherish such wicked thoughts? Which, I ask, is the easier? — to say ‘Your sins are forgiven’? Or to say ‘Get up, and walk’? But to show you that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins” — then he said to the paralysed man — “Get up, take up your bed, and return to your home.” The man got up and went to his home. When the crowd saw this, they were awe-struck, and praised God for giving such power to human beings. As Jesus went along, he saw a man, called Matthew, sitting in the tax office, and said to him: “Follow me.” Matthew got up and followed him.

10  And, later on, when he was having dinner in the house, a number of tax-gatherers and outcasts came in and took their places at the table with Jesus and his disciples. 11 When the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples: “Why does your teacher eat in the company of tax-gatherers and outcasts?” 12 On hearing this, Jesus said: “It is not those who are healthy who need a doctor, but those who are ill. 13 Go and learn what this means — ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice’; for I did not come to call the religious, but the outcast.” 14 Then John’s disciples came to Jesus, and asked: “Why do we and the Pharisees fast while your disciples do not?” 15 Jesus answered: “Can the groom’s friends mourn as long as the groom is with them? But the days will come, when the groom will be taken away from them, and they will fast then. 16 Nobody ever puts a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment; for such a patch tears away from the garment, and a worse tear is made. 17 Nor do people put new wine into old wine-skins; for, if they do, the skins burst, and the wine runs out, and the skins are lost; but they put new wine into fresh skins, and so both are preserved.”

18  While Jesus was saying this, a synagogue leader came up and bowed to the ground before him. “My daughter,” he said, “Has just died; but come and place your hand on her, and she will be restored to life.” 19 So Jesus rose and followed him, and his disciples went also. 20 But meanwhile a woman, who had been suffering from haemorrhage for twelve years, came up behind and touched the tassel of his cloak. 21 “If I only touch his cloak,” she said to herself, “I will get well.” 22 Turning and seeing her, Jesus said: “Courage, daughter! Your faith has delivered you.” And at that very moment she became well. 23 When Jesus reached the leader’s house, seeing the flute players, and a number of people all in confusion, 24 he said: “Go away, the little girl is not dead; she is asleep.” They began to laugh at him; 25 but, when the people had been sent out, Jesus went in, and took the little girl’s hand, and she rose. 26 The report of this spread through all that part of the country.

27  As Jesus was passing on from there, he was followed by two blind men, who kept calling out: “Take pity on us, Son of David!” 28 When he had gone indoors, the blind men came up to him; and Jesus asked them: “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” “Yes, Master!” they answered. 29 Then he touched their eyes, and said: “It will be according to your faith.” 30 Then their eyes were opened. Jesus sternly cautioned them. “See that no one knows of it,” he said. 31 But the men went out, and spread the news about him through all that part of the country. 32 Just as they were going out, some people brought up to Jesus a dumb man who was possessed by a demon; 33 and, as soon as the demon had been driven out, the dumb man spoke. The people were astonished at this, and exclaimed: “Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel!” 34 But the Pharisees said: “He drives out the demons by the help of the chief of the demons.”

35  Jesus went round all the towns and the villages, teaching in their Synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and curing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness. 36 But, when he saw the crowds, his heart was moved with compassion for them, because they were distressed and harassed, ‘like sheep without a shepherd’; 37 and he said to his disciples: “The harvest is abundant, but the labourers are few. Therefore pray to the owner of the harvest to send labourers to gather in his harvest.”

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