18Then Jesus* told them a parable about their need to pray always and not to lose heart. 2He said, In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor had respect for people. 3In that city there was a widow who kept coming to him and saying, Grant me justice against my opponent. 4For a while he refused; but later he said to himself, Though I have no fear of God and no respect for anyone, 5yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will grant her justice, so that she may not wear me out by continually coming. * 6And the Lord said, Listen to what the unjust judge says. 7And will not God grant justice to his chosen ones who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long in helping them? 8I tell you, he will quickly grant justice to them. And yet, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?
9 He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous and regarded others with contempt: 10Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax-collector. 11The Pharisee, standing by himself, was praying thus, God, I thank you that I am not like other people: thieves, rogues, adulterers, or even like this tax-collector. 12I fast twice a week; I give a tenth of all my income. 13But the tax-collector, standing far off, would not even look up to heaven, but was beating his breast and saying, God, be merciful to me, a sinner! 14I tell you, this man went down to his home justified rather than the other; for all who exalt themselves will be humbled, but all who humble themselves will be exalted.
15 People were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them; and when the disciples saw it, they sternly ordered them not to do it. 16But Jesus called for them and said, Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. 17Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.
18 A certain ruler asked him, Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life? 19Jesus said to him, Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. 20You know the commandments: You shall not commit adultery; You shall not murder; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; Honour your father and mother. 21He replied, I have kept all these since my youth. 22When Jesus heard this, he said to him, There is still one thing lacking. Sell all that you own and distribute the money* to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me. 23But when he heard this, he became sad; for he was very rich. 24Jesus looked at him and said, How hard it is for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God! 25Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.
26 Those who heard it said, Then who can be saved? 27He replied, What is impossible for mortals is possible for God.
28 Then Peter said, Look, we have left our homes and followed you.
29And he said to them, Truly I tell you, there is no one who has left house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God,
30who will not get back very much more in this age, and in the age to come eternal life.
31 Then he took the twelve aside and said to them, See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished. 32For he will be handed over to the Gentiles; and he will be mocked and insulted and spat upon. 33After they have flogged him, they will kill him, and on the third day he will rise again. 34But they understood nothing about all these things; in fact, what he said was hidden from them, and they did not grasp what was said.
35 As he approached Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. 36When he heard a crowd going by, he asked what was happening. 37They told him, Jesus of Nazareth* is passing by. 38Then he shouted, Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me! 39Those who were in front sternly ordered him to be quiet; but he shouted even more loudly, Son of David, have mercy on me! 40Jesus stood still and ordered the man to be brought to him; and when he came near, he asked him, 41What do you want me to do for you? He said, Lord, let me see again. 42Jesus said to him, Receive your sight; your faith has saved you. 43Immediately he regained his sight and followed him, glorifying God; and all the people, when they saw it, praised God.
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