The King Acts Provoking Opposition

Matthew 11:2-12:50

112Now when John heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples 3and said to him,


Are you he who comes, or should we look for another?

4Jesus answered them,


Go and tell John the things which you hear and see: 5the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear,* the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them.* 6Blessed is he who finds no occasion for stumbling in me.

7As these went their way, Jesus began to say to the multitudes concerning John,


What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? 8But what did you go out to see? A man in soft clothing? Behold, those who wear soft clothing are in king’s houses. 9But why did you go out? To see a prophet? Yes, I tell you, and much more than a prophet. 10For this is he, of whom it is written, ‘Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way before you.’* 11Most certainly I tell you, among those who are born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptizer; yet he who is least in the Kingdom of Heaven is greater than he. 12From the days of John the Baptizer until now, the Kingdom of Heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.* 13For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. 14If you are willing to receive it, this is Elijah, who is to come. 15He who has ears to hear, let him hear.
16But to what shall I compare this generation? It is like children sitting in the marketplaces, who call to their companions 17and say, ‘We played the flute for you, and you didn’t dance. We mourned for you, and you didn’t lament.’ 18For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon.’ 19The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Behold, a gluttonous man and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ But wisdom is justified by her children.*

20Then he began to denounce the cities in which most of his mighty works had been done, because they didn’t repent.


21Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works had been done in Tyre and Sidon which were done in you, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22But I tell you, it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. 23You, Capernaum, who are exalted to heaven, you will go down to Hades.* For if the mighty works had been done in Sodom which were done in you, it would have remained until today. 24But I tell you that it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom, on the day of judgment, than for you.

25At that time, Jesus answered,


I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you hid these things from the wise and understanding, and revealed them to infants. 26Yes, Father, for so it was well-pleasing in your sight. 27All things have been delivered to me by my Father. No one knows the Son, except the Father; neither does anyone know the Father, except the Son, and he to whom the Son desires to reveal him.
28Come to me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest. 29Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you will find rest for your souls. 30For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

121At that time, Jesus went on the Sabbath day through the grain fields. His disciples were hungry and began to pluck heads of grain and to eat. 2But the Pharisees, when they saw it, said to him,


Behold, your disciples do what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath.

3But he said to them,


Haven’t you read what David did, when he was hungry, and those who were with him; 4how he entered into God’s house, and ate the show bread, which was not lawful for him to eat, neither for those who were with him, but only for the priests?* 5Or have you not read in the law, that on the Sabbath day, the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath, and are guiltless? 6But I tell you that one greater than the temple is here. 7But if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,’* you would not have condemned the guiltless. 8For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.

9He departed there, and went into their synagogue. 10And behold there was a man with a withered hand. They asked him,


Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath day?

that they might accuse him.
11He said to them,


What man is there among you, who has one sheep, and if this one falls into a pit on the Sabbath day, won’t he grab on to it, and lift it out? 12Of how much more value then is a man than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath day.

13Then he told the man,


Stretch out your hand.

He stretched it out; and it was restored whole, just like the other. 14But the Pharisees went out, and conspired against him, how they might destroy him.

15Jesus, perceiving that, withdrew from there. Great multitudes followed him; and he healed them all, 16and commanded them that they should not make him known: 17that it might be fulfilled which was spoken through Isaiah the prophet, saying,
18Behold, my servant whom I have chosen;
my beloved in whom my soul is well pleased:
I will put my Spirit on him.
He will proclaim justice to the nations.
19He will not strive, nor shout;
neither will anyone hear his voice in the streets.
20He won’t break a bruised reed.
He won’t quench a smoking flax,
until he leads justice to victory.
21In his name, the nations will hope.”*
22Then one possessed by a demon, blind and mute, was brought to him and he healed him, so that the blind and mute man both spoke and saw. 23All the multitudes were amazed, and said,


Can this be the son of David?

24But when the Pharisees heard it, they said,


This man does not cast out demons, except by Beelzebul, the prince of the demons.

25Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said to them,


Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and every city or house divided against itself will not stand. 26If Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then will his kingdom stand? 27If I by Beelzebul cast out demons, by whom do your children cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges. 28But if I by the Spirit of God cast out demons, then God’s Kingdom has come upon you. 29Or how can one enter into the house of the strong man, and plunder his goods, unless he first bind the strong man? Then he will plunder his house.
30He who is not with me is against me, and he who doesn’t gather with me, scatters. 31Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven men. 32Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, neither in this age, nor in that which is to come.
33Either make the tree good, and its fruit good, or make the tree corrupt, and its fruit corrupt; for the tree is known by its fruit. 34You offspring of vipers, how can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. 35The good man out of his good treasure brings out good things, and the evil man out of his evil treasure* brings out evil things. 36I tell you that every idle word that men speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. 37For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.

38Then certain of the scribes and Pharisees answered,


Teacher, we want to see a sign from you.

39But he answered them,


An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, but no sign will be given it but the sign of Jonah the prophet. 40For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. 41The men of Nineveh will stand up in the judgment with this generation, and will condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and behold, someone greater than Jonah is here. 42The queen of the south will rise up in the judgment with this generation, and will condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and behold, someone greater than Solomon is here.
43When an unclean spirit has gone out of a man, he passes through waterless places, seeking rest, and doesn’t find it. 44Then he says, ‘I will return into my house from which I came out,’ and when he has come back, he finds it empty, swept, and put in order. 45Then he goes, and takes with himself seven other spirits more evil than he is, and they enter in and dwell there. The last state of that man becomes worse than the first. Even so will it be also to this evil generation.

46While he was yet speaking to the multitudes, behold, his mother and his brothers stood outside, seeking to speak to him. 47One said to him,


Behold, your mother and your brothers stand outside, seeking to speak to you.

48But he answered him who spoke to him,


Who is my mother? Who are my brothers?

49He stretched out his hand towards his disciples, and said,


Behold, my mother and my brothers! 50For whoever does the will of my Father who is in heaven, he is my brother, and sister, and mother.

*Matthew 11:5 Isaiah 35:5
*Matthew 11:5 Isaiah 61:1-4
*Matthew 11:10 Malachi 3:1
*Matthew 11:12 or, plunder it.
*Matthew 11:19 NU reads “actions” instead of “children”
*Matthew 11:23 or, Hell
*Matthew 12:4 1 Samuel 21:3-6
*Matthew 12:7 Hosea 6:6
*Matthew 12:21 Isaiah 42:1-4
*Matthew 12:35 TR adds “of the heart”


  • Consider the acts of God described in this passage.
  • What do these illustrate about the ways of God?
  • Have you experienced these ways of God in your life? If yes, how so? If not, what can you do to experience this?
  • What can you do to grow in your desire to know and follow God more intimately this week?
World English Bible (WEB)
a Public Domain Modern English translation
of the Holy Bible.

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