October 19, Matthew 17, Mark 9

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17 After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and his brother John and led them up on a high mountain by themselves. He was transfigured in front of them, and his face shone like the sun; his clothes became as white as the light. Suddenly, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with him. Then Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it’s good for us to be here. If you want, I will set up three shelters here: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”

While he was still speaking, suddenly a bright cloud covered them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well-pleased. Listen to him!” When the disciples heard this, they fell facedown and were terrified.

Jesus came up, touched them, and said, “Get up; don’t be afraid.” When they looked up they saw no one except Jesus alone.

As they were coming down the mountain, Jesus commanded them, “Don’t tell anyone about the vision until the Son of Man is raised from the dead.”

10 So the disciples asked him, “Why then do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?”

11 “Elijah is coming and will restore everything,” he replied. 12 “But I tell you: Elijah has already come, and they didn’t recognize him. On the contrary, they did whatever they pleased to him. In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands.” 13 Then the disciples understood that he had spoken to them about John the Baptist.

14 When they reached the crowd, a man approached and knelt down before him. 15 “Lord,” he said, “have mercy on my son, because he has seizures and suffers terribly. He often falls into the fire and often into the water. 16 I brought him to your disciples, but they couldn’t heal him.”

17 Jesus replied, “You unbelieving and perverse generation, how long will I be with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring him here to me.” 18 Then Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him, and from that moment the boy was healed.

19 Then the disciples approached Jesus privately and said, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?”

20 “Because of your little faith,” he told them. “For truly I tell you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will tell this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

22 As they were gathering together in Galilee, Jesus told them, “The Son of Man is about to be betrayed into the hands of men. 23 They will kill him, and on the third day he will be raised up.” And they were deeply distressed.

24 When they came to Capernaum, those who collected the temple tax approached Peter and said, “Doesn’t your teacher pay the temple tax?”

25 “Yes,” he said.

When he went into the house, Jesus spoke to him first, “What do you think, Simon? From whom do earthly kings collect tariffs or taxes? From their sons or from strangers?”

26 “From strangers,” he said.

“Then the sons are free,” Jesus told him. 27 “But, so we won’t offend them, go to the sea, cast in a fishhook, and take the first fish that you catch. When you open its mouth you’ll find a coin. Take it and give it to them for me and you.”

Mark 9

Then he said to them, “Truly I tell you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the kingdom of God come in power.”

After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John and led them up a high mountain by themselves to be alone. He was transfigured in front of them, and his clothes became dazzling—extremely white as no launderer on earth could whiten them. Elijah appeared to them with Moses, and they were talking with Jesus. Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it’s good for us to be here. Let’s set up three shelters: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah”— because he did not know what to say, since they were terrified.

A cloud appeared, overshadowing them, and a voice came from the cloud: “This is my beloved Son; listen to him!”

Suddenly, looking around, they no longer saw anyone with them except Jesus.

As they were coming down the mountain, he ordered them to tell no one what they had seen until the Son of Man had risen from the dead. 10 They kept this word to themselves, questioning what “rising from the dead” meant.

11 Then they asked him, “Why do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?”

12 “Elijah does come first and restores all things,” he replied. “Why then is it written that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be treated with contempt? 13 But I tell you that Elijah has come, and they did whatever they pleased to him, just as it is written about him.”

14 When they came to the disciples, they saw a large crowd around them and scribes disputing with them. 15 When the whole crowd saw him, they were amazed and ran to greet him. 16 He asked them, “What are you arguing with them about?”

17 Someone from the crowd answered him, “Teacher, I brought my son to you. He has a spirit that makes him unable to speak. 18 Whenever it seizes him, it throws him down, and he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth, and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive it out, but they couldn’t.”

19 He replied to them, “You unbelieving generation, how long will I be with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring him to me.” 20 So they brought the boy to him. When the spirit saw him, it immediately threw the boy into convulsions. He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth. 21 “How long has this been happening to him?” Jesus asked his father.

“From childhood,” he said. 22 “And many times it has thrown him into fire or water to destroy him. But if you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.”

23 Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’? Everything is possible for the one who believes.”

24 Immediately the father of the boy cried out, “I do believe; help my unbelief!”

25 When Jesus saw that a crowd was quickly gathering, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “You mute and deaf spirit, I command you: Come out of him and never enter him again.”

26 Then it came out, shrieking and throwing him into terrible convulsions. The boy became like a corpse, so that many said, “He’s dead.” 27 But Jesus, taking him by the hand, raised him, and he stood up.

28 After he had gone into the house, his disciples asked him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?”

29 And he told them, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer.”

30 Then they left that place and made their way through Galilee, but he did not want anyone to know it. 31 For he was teaching his disciples and telling them, “The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of men. They will kill him, and after he is killed, he will rise three days later.” 32 But they did not understand this statement, and they were afraid to ask him.

33 They came to Capernaum. When he was in the house, he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the way?” 34 But they were silent, because on the way they had been arguing with one another about who was the greatest. 35 Sitting down, he called the Twelve and said to them, “If anyone wants to be first, he must be last and servant of all.” 36 He took a child, had him stand among them, and taking him in his arms, he said to them, 37 “Whoever welcomes one little child such as this in my name welcomes me. And whoever welcomes me does not welcome me, but him who sent me.”

38 John said to him, “Teacher, we saw someone driving out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him because he wasn’t following us.”

39 “Don’t stop him,” said Jesus, “because there is no one who will perform a miracle in my name who can soon afterward speak evil of me. 40 For whoever is not against us is for us. 41 And whoever gives you a cup of water to drink in my name, because you belong to Christ —truly I tell you, he will never lose his reward.

42 “But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to fall away —it would be better for him if a heavy millstone were hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea.

43 “And if your hand causes you to fall away, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than to have two hands and go to hell, the unquenchable fire. 45 And if your foot causes you to fall away, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life lame than to have two feet and be thrown into hell. 47 And if your eye causes you to fall away, gouge it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, 48 where their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched. 49 For everyone will be salted with fire. 50 Salt is good, but if the salt should lose its flavor, how can you season it? Have salt among yourselves, and be at peace with one another.”

The disciples asked Jesus why they couldn’t drive out the demon in the little boy. Jesus answer..”Because of your small faith.” It does beg the question, “How many of us don’t see the power of God in our lives because we have small faith?” This faith isn’t faith that makes you healthy or wealthy. It isn’t faith that prospers you in worldly ways. It is faith, that if exercised, will see mountains moved and the kingdom of God built on earth. Do you want to see God’s kingdom come on earth? All it takes is a mustard seed of faith.

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