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Matthew 18

18
The Most Important Person in the Kingdom
1At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked him, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
2Jesus called a little child over and had them stand in the middle of the group. 3Jesus then said, “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you’ll never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4Whoever becomes humble like this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5And anyone who welcomes a child like this one in my name welcomes me.
Don’t Cause People to Sin
6“But what if someone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin? It would be better for them to be thrown into the sea with a large millstone hung around their neck and drown at the bottom. 7Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to sin! Things like that must come. Woe to the person who causes them! 8If your hand or foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It’s better to enter life with only one hand or foot than to go with two hands or two feet into hell, where the fire burns forever. 9If your eye causes you to sin, pull it out and throw it away. It’s better to enter life with one eye than to be thrown into the fire of hell with two eyes.
The Story of the Lost Sheep
10-11“Make sure you don’t look down on one of these little ones. I tell you, their angels in heaven see face to face my Father who is in heaven.
12“What do you think? Suppose a man owns 100 sheep and one of them wanders away. Won’t he leave the 99 sheep on the hills and go look for the one that wandered off? 13Truly I tell you, if he finds that sheep, he’ll be happier about it than about the 99 that didn’t wander off. 14It’s the same with your Father in heaven. He doesn’t want any of these little ones to be lost.
When Someone Sins Against You
15“If your brother or sister sins against you, go and tell them privately what they’ve done wrong. If they listen to you, you’ve won them back. 16But if they won’t listen to you, return with one or two others. Scripture says, ‘Every matter must be proved by the words of two or three witnesses.’ 17If they still refuse to listen, then tell it to the community of believers. And if they refuse to listen even to the community, then treat them the way you would treat an unbeliever or a traitor.
18“Truly I tell you, what you tie up on earth will be tied up in heaven, and what you set free on earth will be set free in heaven.
19“Again, I tell you truly, if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, my Father in heaven will do it for you. 20Where two or three people gather in my name, I am there with them.”
The Servant Who Had No Mercy
21Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times should I forgive a brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?”
22Jesus answered, “Not seven times, I tell you, but 77 times.
23“The kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to collect all the money his servants owed him. 24First, they brought him a man who owed 10,000 bags of gold. 25Since he wasn’t able to pay, his master ordered the man, his wife, his children, and everything he owned to be sold to pay back the debt.
26“Then the servant got down on his knees in front of him. ‘Give me time,’ he begged, ‘and I’ll pay everything back.’ 27His master felt sorry for him, so he forgave him what he owed and let him go.
28“But then that servant went out and found another servant, who owed him 100 silver coins. He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded.
29“The other servant got down on his knees. ‘Give me time,’ he begged him, ‘and I’ll pay it back.’
30“But the first servant refused. Instead, he went and had the man thrown into prison until he paid back what he owed. 31When the other servants saw this, it made them very angry. They went and told their master everything that had happened.
32“Then the master called the first servant back in. ‘You ungrateful servant,’ he said. ‘I forgave you everything you owed because you begged me to. 33Shouldn’t you have had mercy on the other servant, just as I had mercy on you?’ 34The master was so angry that handed him over to the jailers to be punished until he paid back everything he owed.
35“That’s how my Father in heaven will treat each of you if you don’t forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”

Matthew 18

18
The Question About Who Is Greatest
1 At that time the disciples came up to Jesus, saying, “Who then is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” 2And calling a child to himself, he had him stand in their midst 3and said, “Truly I say to you, unless you turn around and become like young children, you will never enter into the kingdom of heaven! 4Therefore whoever humbles himself like this child, this person is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven, 5and whoever welcomes one child such as this in my name welcomes me. 6But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him that a large millstone#Literally “a millstone of a donkey” be hung on#Some manuscripts have “around” his neck and he be drowned in the depths of the sea. 7Woe to the world because of causes for stumbling, for it is a necessity that causes for stumbling come; nevertheless, woe to the person through whom the cause for stumbling comes. 8And if your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it#*Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation from you! It is better for you to enter into life crippled or lame than, having two hands or two feet, to be thrown into the eternal fire! 9And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it#*Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation from you! It is better for you to enter into life one-eyed than, having two eyes, to be thrown into fiery hell!
The Parable of the Lost Sheep
10“See to it that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I tell you that their angels in heaven constantly see the face of my Father who is in heaven.#Many later Greek manuscripts include vs. 11, “For the Son of Man came to save those who are lost.” 12What do you think? If a certain man has#Literally “there are to a certain man” a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go and#*Here “and” is supplied because the previous participle (“go”) has been translated as a finite verb look for the one that wandered away? 13And if he happens to find it, truly I say to you that he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that did not wander away. 14In the same way it is not the will of#Literally “in the presence of” your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones perish.
Confronting a Brother Who Sins Against You
15“Now if your brother sins against you, go correct him between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. 16But if he does not listen, take with you in addition one or two others, so that by the testimony#Literally “the mouth” of two or three witnesses every matter may be established. 17And if he refuses to listen to them, tell it#*Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation to the church. But if he refuses to listen to the church also, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.
18“Truly I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you release on earth will be released in heaven. 19Again, truly I say to you that if two of you agree on earth about any matter that they ask, it will be done for them from my Father who is in heaven. 20For where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there in the midst of them.”
The Parable of the Unforgiving Slave
21Then Peter came up to him and#*Here “and” is supplied because the previous participle (“came up”) has been translated as a finite verb said,#Some manuscripts have “Then Peter came up and said to him” “Lord, how many times will my brother sin against me and I will forgive him? Up to seven times?” 22Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven!#Or “seventy-seven times”
23“For this reason the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man—a king—who wanted to settle accounts with his slaves. 24And when#*Here “when” is supplied as a component of the temporal genitive absolute participle (“began”) he began to settle them,#*Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation someone was brought to him who owed ten thousand talents. 25And because#*Here “because” is supplied as a component of the participle (“have”) which is understood as causal he did not have enough#*Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation to repay it,#*Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation the master ordered him to be sold, and his#*Literally “the”; the Greek article is used here as a possessive pronoun wife and his#*Literally “the”; the Greek article is used here as a possessive pronoun children and everything that he had, and to be repaid. 26Then the slave threw himself to the ground and#*Here “and” is supplied because the previous participle (“threw himself to the ground”) has been translated as a finite verb began to do obeisance to him, saying, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay back everything to you!’ 27So the master of that slave, because he#*Here “because” is supplied as a component of the participle (“had compassion”) which is understood as causal had compassion, released him and forgave him the loan. 28But that slave went out and#*Here “and” is supplied because the previous participle (“went out”) has been translated as a finite verb found one of his fellow slaves who owed him a hundred denarii, and taking hold of him, he began to choke him,#*Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation saying, ‘Pay back everything that you owe!’ 29Then his fellow slave threw himself to the ground and#*Here “and” is supplied because the previous participle (“threw himself to the ground”) has been translated as a finite verb began to implore#*The imperfect tense has been translated as ingressive here (“began to implore”) him, saying, ‘Be patient with me and I will repay you!’ 30But he did not want to, but rather he went and#*Here “and” is supplied because the previous participle (“went”) has been translated as a finite verb threw him into prison until he would repay what was owed. 31So when#*Here “when” is supplied as a component of the participle (“saw”) which is understood as temporal his fellow slaves saw what had happened, they were extremely distressed, and went and#*Here “and” is supplied because the previous participle (“went”) has been translated as a finite verb reported to their master everything that had happened. 32Then his master summoned him and#*Here “and” is supplied because the previous participle (“summoned”) has been translated as a finite verb said to him, ‘Wicked slave! I forgave you all that debt because you implored me! 33Should you not also have shown mercy to your fellow slave as I also showed mercy to you?’ 34And because he#*Here “because” is supplied as a component of the participle (“was angry”) which is understood as causal was angry, his master handed him over to the merciless jailers#Or “torturers” until he would repay everything that was owed. 35So also my heavenly Father will do to you, unless each of you forgives his brother from your hearts!”