18Once when Jesus was praying alone, with only the disciples near him, he asked them, Who do the crowds say that I am? 19They answered, John the Baptist; but others, Elijah; and still others, that one of the ancient prophets has arisen. 20He said to them, But who do you say that I am? Peter answered, The Messiah of God. 21He sternly ordered and commanded them not to tell anyone, 22saying, The Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. 23Then he said to them all, If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. 24For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will save it. 25What does it profit them if they gain the whole world, but lose or forfeit themselves? 26Those who are ashamed of me and of my words, of them the Son of Man will be ashamed when he comes in his glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels. 27But truly I tell you, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God.
28Now about eight days after these sayings Jesus took with him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. 29And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white. 30Suddenly they saw two men, Moses and Elijah, talking to him. 31They appeared in glory and were speaking of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. 32Now Peter and his companions were weighed down with sleep; but since they had stayed awake, they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. 33Just as they were leaving him, Peter said to Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah not knowing what he said. 34While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were terrified as they entered the cloud. 35Then from the cloud came a voice that said, This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him! 36When the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and in those days told no one any of the things they had seen. 44Let these words sink into your ears: The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into human hands. 45But they did not understand this saying; its meaning was concealed from them, so that they could not perceive it. And they were afraid to ask him about this saying. 46An argument arose among them as to which one of them was the greatest. 47But Jesus, aware of their inner thoughts, took a little child and put it by his side, 48and said to them, Whoever welcomes this child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me; for the least among all of you is the greatest. 49John answered, Master, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him, because he does not follow with us. 50But Jesus said to him, Do not stop him; for whoever is not against you is for you.
The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 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