14On one occasion when Jesus* was going to the house of a leader of the Pharisees to eat a meal on the sabbath, they were watching him closely. 2Just then, in front of him, there was a man who had dropsy. 3And Jesus asked the lawyers and Pharisees, Is it lawful to cure people on the sabbath, or not? 4But they were silent. So Jesus* took him and healed him, and sent him away. 5Then he said to them, If one of you has a child* or an ox that has fallen into a well, will you not immediately pull it out on a sabbath day? 6And they could not reply to this.
7 When he noticed how the guests chose the places of honour, he told them a parable. 8When you are invited by someone to a wedding banquet, do not sit down at the place of honour, in case someone more distinguished than you has been invited by your host; 9and the host who invited both of you may come and say to you, Give this person your place, and then in disgrace you would start to take the lowest place. 10But when you are invited, go and sit down at the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he may say to you, Friend, move up higher; then you will be honoured in the presence of all who sit at the table with you. 11For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.
12 He said also to the one who had invited him, When you give a luncheon or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbours, in case they may invite you in return, and you would be repaid. 13But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind. 14And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you, for you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.
15 One of the dinner guests, on hearing this, said to him, Blessed is anyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God! 16Then Jesus* said to him, Someone gave a great dinner and invited many. 17At the time for the dinner he sent his slave to say to those who had been invited, Come; for everything is ready now. 18But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, I have bought a piece of land, and I must go out and see it; please accept my apologies. 19Another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to try them out; please accept my apologies. 20Another said, I have just been married, and therefore I cannot come. 21So the slave returned and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and said to his slave, Go out at once into the streets and lanes of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame. 22And the slave said, Sir, what you ordered has been done, and there is still room. 23Then the master said to the slave, Go out into the roads and lanes, and compel people to come in, so that my house may be filled. 24For I tell you,* none of those who were invited will taste my dinner.
25 Now large crowds were travelling with him; and he turned and said to them, 26Whoever comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and even life itself, cannot be my disciple. 27Whoever does not carry the cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. 28For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not first sit down and estimate the cost, to see whether he has enough to complete it? 29Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it will begin to ridicule him, 30saying, This fellow began to build and was not able to finish. 31Or what king, going out to wage war against another king, will not sit down first and consider whether he is able with ten thousand to oppose the one who comes against him with twenty thousand? 32If he cannot, then, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and asks for the terms of peace. 33So therefore, none of you can become my disciple if you do not give up all your possessions.
34 Salt is good; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored?* 35It is fit neither for the soil nor for the manure heap; they throw it away. Let anyone with ears to hear listen!
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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10 February 2011