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Matthew 19

19
Jesus Teaches About Divorce
1When Jesus had finished saying these things, he left Galilee and went into the area of Judea that’s on the other side of the Jordan River. 2Large crowds followed him, and he healed many people there.
3Some Pharisees came to test Jesus. They asked, “Does the Law allow a man to divorce his wife for any reason he wants?”
4Jesus replied, “Haven’t you read that in the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female’? 5He said, ‘A man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two will become one.’ 6Since they are no longer two, but one, no one should separate what God has joined together.”
7They asked, “Then why did Moses say that a man could give his wife a letter of divorce and send her away?”
8Jesus replied, “Moses allowed you to divorce your wives because you were so hard-hearted. But that’s not the way it was from the beginning. 9I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, unless she has been unfaithful, and marries another woman commits adultery.”
10The disciples said to him. “If that’s the way it is between a husband and a wife, then it’s better not to get married.”
11Jesus answered, “Not everyone can grasp this saying. God has to enable a person to do that. 12Others won’t get married, either because they were born unable to have children or because other people made them that way. Still others will choose not to get married so they can serve the kingdom of heaven single. But anyone who can grasp the saying should accept it.”
Jesus Blesses Little Children
13Then people brought little children to Jesus because they wanted him to place his hands on them and pray for them. The disciples started to tell the people that they shouldn’t do this.
14But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and don’t try to stop them, because the kingdom of heaven belongs to people like these.” 15He placed his hands on them, and then he went on his way.
Rich People and the Kingdom of God
16A man came up to Jesus and asked, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to receive eternal life?”
17“Why do you ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “There is only one who is good. If you want to enter the kingdom, obey the commandments.”
18“Which ones?” the man asked.
Jesus said, “ ‘Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not be a false witness, 19honor your father and mother.’ And, ‘love your neighbor as you love yourself.’ ”
20“I’ve obeyed all those commandments,” the young man said. “What else do I need to do?”
21Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go and sell everything you have. Give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come and follow me.”
22When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he was very rich.
23Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly I tell you, it’s very difficult for someone who’s rich to enter the kingdom of heaven. 24Again I tell you, it’s easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who’s rich to enter the kingdom of God.”
25When the disciples heard this, they were amazed and asked, “Then who can be saved?”
26Jesus looked at them and said, “With people, it’s impossible, but with God, all things are possible.”
27Peter answered him, “We’ve left everything to follow you! What reward will we get?”
28Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, when all things are made new and the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, then you who have followed me will also sit on 12 thrones, judging the 12 tribes of Israel. 29Everyone who has left houses or fields, brothers or sisters, father or mother, or husband or wife and children because of me will receive 100 times as much. They will also receive eternal life. 30But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first.
19
Concerning Divorce
1Now when Jesus had finished saying these things, He left Galilee and went into the part of Judea that is beyond the Jordan; 2and large crowds followed Him, and He healed them there.
3And Pharisees came to Jesus, testing Him and asking, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for just any reason?” 4He replied, “Have you never read that He who created them from the beginning made them male and female, 5and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be joined inseparably to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? 6So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, let no one separate.” 7The Pharisees said to Him, “Why then did Moses command us to give her a certificate of divorce and send her away?” 8He said to them, “Because your hearts were hard and stubborn Moses permitted you to divorce your wives; but from the beginning it has not been this way. 9I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery#Some early mss add the phrase “...and he who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.”.”
10The disciples said to Jesus, “If the relationship of a man with his wife is like this, it is better not to marry.” 11But He said to them, “Not all men can accept this statement, but only those to whom [the capacity to receive] it has been given. 12For there are eunuchs who have been born that way from their mother’s womb [making them incapable of consummating a marriage]; and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by men [for royal service]; and there are eunuchs who have #This may refer to a personal vow of celibacy.made themselves so for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. He who is able to accept this, let him accept it.”
Jesus Blesses Little Children
13Then children were brought to Jesus so that He might place His hands on them [for a blessing] and pray; but the disciples reprimanded them. 14But He said, “Leave the children alone, and do not forbid them from coming to Me; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” 15After placing His hands on them [for a blessing], He went on from there.
The Rich Young Ruler
16And someone came to Him and said, “Teacher, what [essentially] good thing shall I do to obtain eternal life [that is, eternal salvation in the Messiah’s kingdom]?” 17Jesus answered, “Why are you asking Me about what is [essentially] good? There is only One who is [essentially] good; but if you wish to enter into eternal life, keep the commandments.” 18He said to Jesus, “Which commandments?” And Jesus answered, “You shall not commit murder; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not give false testimony; 19Honor your father and mother; and love your neighbor as yourself [that is, unselfishly seek the best or higher good for others]. 20The young man said to Him, “I have kept all these things [from my youth]; what do I still lack?” 21Jesus answered him, “If you wish to be perfect [that is, have the spiritual maturity that accompanies godly character with no moral or ethical deficiencies], go and sell what you have and give [the money] to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me [becoming My disciple, believing and trusting in Me and walking the same path of life that I walk].” 22But when the young man heard this, he left grieving and distressed, for he owned much property and had many possessions [which he treasured more than his relationship with God].
23Jesus said to His disciples, “I assure you and most solemnly say to you, it is difficult for a rich man [who clings to possessions and status as security] to enter the kingdom of heaven. 24Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man [who places his faith in wealth and status] to enter the kingdom of God.” 25When the disciples heard this, they were completely #These declarations of Jesus directly contradicted the teaching of the Pharisees that God bestows wealth on those He loves and chooses. If the rich were not automatically granted entrance to God’s kingdom, how could the common man ever be welcomed?astonished and bewildered, saying, “Then who can be saved [from the wrath of God]?” 26But Jesus looked at them and said, “With people [as far as it depends on them] it is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
The Disciples’ Reward
27Then Peter answered Him, saying, “Look, we have given up everything and followed You [becoming Your disciples and accepting You as Teacher and Lord]; what then will there be for us?” 28Jesus said to them, “I assure you and most solemnly say to you, in the renewal [that is, the Messianic restoration and regeneration of all things] when the Son of Man sits on His glorious throne, you [who have followed Me, becoming My disciples] will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother #One early mss adds or wife.or children or farms for My name’s sake will receive many times as much, and will inherit eternal life. 30But many who are first [in this world] will be last [in the world to come]; and the last, first.