1Meanwhile the people had gathered in their thousands so that they were treading on one another. Andhe began to speak, first of al to his disciples. 'Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees -- theirhypocrisy. 2Everything now covered up will be uncovered, and everything now hidden wil be made clear. 3For this reason, whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight, and what you havewhispered in hidden places wil be proclaimed from the housetops. 4'To you my friends I say: Do not be afraid of those who kil the body and after that can do no more. 5I wil tel you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has kil ed, has the power to cast into hel . Yes, I telyou, he is the one to fear. 6Can you not buy five sparrows for two pennies? And yet not one is forgotten in God's sight. 7Why, every hair on your head has been counted. There is no need to be afraid: you are worth morethan many sparrows. 8'I tel you, if anyone openly declares himself for me in the presence of human beings, the Son of manwil declare himself for him in the presence of God's angels. 9But anyone who disowns me in the presence of human beings wil be disowned in the presence ofGod's angels. 10'Everyone who says a word against the Son of man will be forgiven, but no one who blasphemesagainst the Holy Spirit wil be forgiven. 11'When they take you before synagogues and magistrates and authorities, do not worry about how todefend yourselves or what to say, 12because when the time comes, the Holy Spirit wil teach you what you should say.' 13A man in the crowd said to him, 'Master, tel my brother to give me a share of our inheritance.' 14He said to him, 'My friend, who appointed me your judge, or the arbitrator of your claims?' 15Then he said to them, 'Watch, and be on your guard against avarice of any kind, for life does notconsist in possessions, even when someone has more than he needs.' 16Then he told them a parable, 'There was once a rich man who, having had a good harvest from hisland, 17thought to himself, "What am I to do? I have not enough room to store my crops." 18Then he said, "This is what I will do: I wil pul down my barns and build bigger ones, and store al mygrain and my goods in them, 19and I will say to my soul: My soul, you have plenty of good things laid by for many years to come;take things easy, eat, drink, have a good time." 20But God said to him, "Fool! This very night the demand wil be made for your soul; and this hoard ofyours, whose wil it be then?" 21So it is when someone stores up treasure for himself instead of becoming rich in the sight of God.' 22Then he said to his disciples, 'That is why I am tel ing you not to worry about your life and what youare to eat, nor about your body and how you are to clothe it. 23For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. 24Think of the ravens. They do not sow or reap; they have no storehouses and no barns; yet God feedsthem. And how much more you are worth than the birds! 25Can any of you, however much you worry, add a single cubit to your span of life? 26If a very smal thing is beyond your powers, why worry about the rest? 27Think how the flowers grow; they never have to spin or weave; yet, I assure you, not even Solomon inal his royal robes was clothed like one of them. 28Now if that is how God clothes a flower which is growing wild today and is thrown into the furnacetomorrow, how much more wil he look after you, who have so little faith! 29But you must not set your hearts on things to eat and things to drink; nor must you worry. 30It is the gentiles of this world who set their hearts on al these things. Your Father wel knows youneed them. 31No; set your hearts on his kingdom, and these other things will be given you as well. 32'There is no need to be afraid, little flock, for it has pleased your Father to give you the kingdom. 33'Sel your possessions and give to those in need. Get yourselves purses that do not wear out,treasure that wil not fail you, in heaven where no thief can reach it and no moth destroy it. 34For wherever your treasure is, that is where your heart wil be too. 35'See that you have your belts done up and your lamps lit. 36Be like people waiting for their master to return from the wedding feast, ready to open the door assoon as he comes and knocks. 37Blessed those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes. In truth I tel you, he wil do uphis belt, sit them down at table and wait on them. 38It may be in the second watch that he comes, or in the third, but blessed are those servants if he findsthem ready. 39You may be quite sure of this, that if the householder had known at what time the burglar wouldcome, he would not have let anyone break through the wall of his house. 40You too must stand ready, because the Son of man is coming at an hour you do not expect.' 41Peter said, 'Lord, do you mean this parable for us, or for everyone?' 42The Lord replied, 'Who, then, is the wise and trustworthy steward whom the master wil place over hishousehold to give them at the proper time their al owance of food? 43Blessed that servant if his master's arrival finds him doing exactly that. 44I tel you truly, he wil put him in charge of everything that he owns. 45But if the servant says to himself, "My master is taking his time coming," and sets about beating themenservants and the servant-girls, and eating and drinking and getting drunk, 46his master wil come on a day he does not expect and at an hour he does not know. The master willcut him off and send him to the same fate as the unfaithful. 47'The servant who knows what his master wants, but has got nothing ready and done nothing inaccord with those wishes, wil be given a great many strokes of the lash. 48The one who did not know, but has acted in such a way that he deserves a beating, will be givenfewer strokes. When someone is given a great deal, a great deal wil be demanded of that person; whensomeone is entrusted with a great deal, of that person even more will be expected. 49'I have come to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were blazing already! 50There is a baptism I must stil receive, and what constraint I am under until it is completed! 51'Do you suppose that I am here to bring peace on earth? No, I tel you, but rather division. 52For from now on, a household of five will be divided: three against two and two against three; 53father opposed to son, son to father, mother to daughter, daughter to mother, mother-in-law todaughter-in-law, daughter-in-law to mother-in-law.' 54He said again to the crowds, 'When you see a cloud looming up in the west you say at once that rainis coming, and so it does. 55And when the wind is from the south you say it's going to be hot, and it is. 56Hypocrites! You know how to interpret the face of the earth and the sky. How is it you do not knowhow to interpret these times? 57'Why not judge for yourselves what is upright? 58For example: when you are going to court with your opponent, make an effort to settle with him on theway, or he may drag you before the judge and the judge hand you over to the officer and the officer have youthrown into prison. 59I tel you, you wil not get out til you have paid the very last penny.'
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