Many Women Support Christ’s Work
Afterward he was traveling from one town and village to another, preaching and telling the good news of the kingdom of God. The Twelve were with him, 2 and also some women who had been healed of evil spirits and sicknesses: Mary, called Magdalene (seven demons had come out of her); 3 Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward; Susanna; and many others who were supporting them from their possessions.
The Parable of the Sower
4 As a large crowd was gathering, and people were coming to Jesus from every town, he said in a parable: 5 “A sower went out to sow his seed. As he sowed, some seed fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds of the sky devoured it. 6 Other seed fell on the rock; when it grew up, it withered away, since it lacked moisture. 7 Other seed fell among thorns; the thorns grew up with it and choked it. 8 Still other seed fell on good ground; when it grew up, it produced fruit: a hundred times what was sown.” As he said this, he called out, “Let anyone who has ears to hear listen.”
Why Jesus Used Parables
9 Then his disciples asked him, “What does this parable mean?” 10 So he said, “The secrets of the kingdom of God have been given for you to know, but to the rest it is in parables, so that
Looking they may not see,
and hearing they may not understand.[a]
The Parable of the Sower Explained
11 “This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. 12 The seed along the path are those who have heard and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. 13 And the seed on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy. Having no root, these believe for a while and fall away in a time of testing. 14 As for the seed that fell among thorns, these are the ones who, when they have heard, go on their way and are choked with worries, riches, and pleasures of life, and produce no mature fruit. 15 But the seed in the good ground—these are the ones who, having heard the word with an honest and good heart, hold on to it and by enduring, produce fruit.
Using Your Light
16 “No one, after lighting a lamp, covers it with a basket or puts it under a bed, but puts it on a lampstand so that those who come in may see its light. 17 For nothing is concealed that won’t be revealed, and nothing hidden that won’t be made known and brought to light. 18 Therefore take care how you listen. For whoever has, more will be given to him; and whoever does not have, even what he thinks he has will be taken away from him.”
19 Then his mother and brothers came to him, but they could not meet with him because of the crowd. 20 He was told, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you.”
21 But he replied to them, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear and do the word of God.”
Wind and Waves Obey Jesus
22 One day he and his disciples got into a boat, and he told them, “Let’s cross over to the other side of the lake.” So they set out, 23 and as they were sailing he fell asleep. Then a fierce windstorm came down on the lake; they were being swamped and were in danger. 24 They came and woke him up, saying, “Master, Master, we’re going to die!”
Then he got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waves. So they ceased, and there was a calm. 25 He said to them, “Where is your faith?”
They were fearful and amazed, asking one another, “Who then is this? He commands even the winds and the waves, and they obey him!”
Demons Driven Out by Jesus
26 Then they sailed to the region of the Gerasenes,[b] which is opposite Galilee. 27 When he got out on land, a demon-possessed man from the town met him. For a long time he had worn no clothes and did not stay in a house but in the tombs. 28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out, fell down before him, and said in a loud voice, “What do you have to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, don’t torment me!” 29 For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. Many times it had seized him, and though he was guarded, bound by chains and shackles, he would snap the restraints and be driven by the demon into deserted places.
30 “What is your name?” Jesus asked him.
“Legion,” he said, because many demons had entered him. 31 And they begged him not to banish them to the abyss.
32 A large herd of pigs was there, feeding on the hillside. The demons begged him to permit them to enter the pigs, and he gave them permission. 33 The demons came out of the man and entered the pigs, and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and drowned.
34 When the men who tended them saw what had happened, they ran off and reported it in the town and in the countryside. 35 Then people went out to see what had happened. They came to Jesus and found the man the demons had departed from, sitting at Jesus’s feet, dressed and in his right mind. And they were afraid. 36 Meanwhile, the eyewitnesses reported to them how the demon-possessed man was delivered. 37 Then all the people of the Gerasene region[c] asked him to leave them, because they were gripped by great fear. So getting into the boat, he returned.
38 The man from whom the demons had departed begged him earnestly to be with him. But he sent him away and said, 39 “Go back to your home, and tell all that God has done for you.” And off he went, proclaiming throughout the town how much Jesus had done for him.
A Girl Restored and a Woman Healed
40 When Jesus returned, the crowd welcomed him, for they were all expecting him. 41 Just then, a man named Jairus came. He was a leader of the synagogue. He fell down at Jesus’s feet and pleaded with him to come to his house, 42 because he had an only daughter about twelve years old, and she was dying.
While he was going, the crowds were nearly crushing him. 43 A woman suffering from bleeding for twelve years, who had spent all she had on doctors[d] and yet could not be healed by any, 44 approached from behind and touched the end of his robe. Instantly her bleeding stopped.
45 “Who touched me?” Jesus asked.
46 “Someone did touch me,” said Jesus. “I know that power has gone out from me.” 47 When the woman saw that she was discovered, she came trembling and fell down before him. In the presence of all the people, she declared the reason she had touched him and how she was instantly healed. 48 “Daughter,” he said to her, “your faith has saved you.[g] Go in peace.”
49 While he was still speaking, someone came from the synagogue leader’s house and said, “Your daughter is dead. Don’t bother the teacher anymore.”
50 When Jesus heard it, he answered him, “Don’t be afraid. Only believe, and she will be saved.”[h] 51 After he came to the house, he let no one enter with him except Peter, John, James, and the child’s father and mother. 52 Everyone was crying and mourning for her. But he said, “Stop crying, because she is not dead but asleep.”
53 They laughed at him, because they knew she was dead. 54 So he[i] took her by the hand and called out, “Child, get up!” 55 Her spirit returned, and she got up at once. Then he gave orders that she be given something to eat. 56 Her parents were astounded, but he instructed them to tell no one what had happened.