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Matthew 9

1 Jesus got into a boat, crossed the sea, and came to his own city.

2 Some people brought him a paralyzed man on a stretcher. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the man, "Cheer up, friend! Your sins are forgiven." 3 Then some of the scribes thought, "He's dishonoring God." 4 Jesus knew what they were thinking. He asked them, "Why are you thinking evil things? 5 Is it easier to say, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Get up and walk'? 6 I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins." Then he said to the paralyzed man, "Get up, pick up your stretcher, and go home." 7 So the man got up and went home. 8 When the crowd saw this, they were filled with awe and praised God for giving such authority to humans.

9 When Jesus was leaving that place, he saw a man sitting in a tax office. The man's name was Matthew. Jesus said to him, "Follow me!" So Matthew got up and followed him.

10 Later Jesus was having dinner at Matthew's house. Many tax collectors and sinners came to eat with Jesus and his disciples. 11 The Pharisees saw this and asked his disciples, "Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?" 12 When Jesus heard that, he said, "Healthy people don't need a doctor; those who are sick do. 13 Learn what this means: 'I want mercy, not sacrifices.' I've come to call sinners, not people who think they have God's approval."

14 Then John's disciples came to Jesus. They said, "Why do we and the Pharisees fast often but your disciples never do?" 15 Jesus replied, "Can wedding guests be sad while the groom is still with them? The time will come when the groom will be taken away from them. Then they will fast. 16 "No one patches an old coat with a new piece of cloth that will shrink. When the patch shrinks, it will rip away from the coat, and the tear will become worse. 17 Nor do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins burst, the wine runs out, and the skins are ruined. Rather, people pour new wine into fresh skins, and both are saved."

18 A [synagogue] leader came to Jesus while he was talking to John's disciples. He bowed down in front of Jesus and said, "My daughter just died. Come, lay your hand on her, and she will live." 19 Jesus and his disciples got up and followed the man.

20 Then a woman came up behind Jesus and touched the edge of his clothes. She had been suffering from chronic bleeding for twelve years. 21 She thought, "If I only touch his clothes, I'll get well." 22 When Jesus turned and saw her he said, "Cheer up, daughter! Your faith has made you well." At that very moment the woman became well.

23 Jesus came to the [synagogue] leader's house. He saw flute players and a noisy crowd. 24 He said to them, "Leave! The girl is not dead. She's sleeping." But they laughed at him. 25 When the crowd had been put outside, Jesus went in, took her hand, and the girl came back to life. 26 The news about this spread throughout that region.

27 When Jesus left that place, two blind men followed him. They shouted, "Have mercy on us, Son of David." 28 Jesus went into a house, and the blind men followed him. He said to them, "Do you believe that I can do this?" "Yes, Lord," they answered. 29 He touched their eyes and said, "What you have believed will be done for you!" 30 Then they could see. He warned them, "Don't let anyone know about this!" 31 But they went out and spread the news about him throughout that region.

32 As they were leaving, some people brought a man to Jesus. The man was unable to talk because he was possessed by a demon. 33 But as soon as the demon was forced out, the man began to speak. The crowds were amazed and said, "We have never seen anything like this in Israel!" 34 But the Pharisees said, "He forces demons out of people with the help of the ruler of demons."

35 Jesus went to all the towns and villages. He taught in the synagogues and spread the Good News of the kingdom. He also cured every disease and sickness.

36 When he saw the crowds, he felt sorry for them. They were troubled and helpless like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then he said to his disciples, "The harvest is large, but the workers are few. 38 So ask the Lord who gives this harvest to send workers to harvest his crops."

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GOD'S WORD is a copyrighted work of God's Word to the Nations (http://GodsWord.org). Quotations are used by permission. Copyright 1995 by God's Word to the Nations. All rights reserved.

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