Jesus Calls the First Disciples
1While the people pressed upon him to hear the word of God, he was standing by the lake of Gennes'aret. 2And he saw two boats by the lake; but the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. 3Getting into one of the boats, which was Simon's, he asked him to put out a little from the land. And he sat down and taught the people from the boat. 4And when he had ceased speaking, he said to Simon, "Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch." 5And Simon answered, "Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets." 6And when they had done this, they enclosed a great shoal of fish; and as their nets were breaking, 7they beckoned to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. 8But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, "Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord." 9For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the catch of fish which they had taken; 10and so also were James and John, sons of Zeb'edee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid; henceforth you will be catching men." 11And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed him.
Jesus Cleanses a Leper
12While he was in one of the cities, there came a man full of leprosy; and when he saw Jesus, he fell on his face and besought him, "Lord, if you will, you can make me clean." 13And he stretched out his hand, and touched him, saying, "I will; be clean." And immediately the leprosy left him. 14And he charged him to tell no one; but "go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your cleansing, as Moses commanded, for a proof to the people."a 15But so much the more the report went abroad concerning him; and great multitudes gathered to hear and to be healed of their infirmities. 16But he withdrew to the wilderness and prayed.
Jesus Heals a Paralytic
17On one of those days, as he was teaching, there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting by, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem; and the power of the Lord was with him to heal.b 18And behold, men were bringing on a bed a man who was paralyzed, and they sought to bring him in and lay him before Jesus;c 19but finding no way to bring him in, because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and let him down with his bed through the tiles into the midst before Jesus. 20And when he saw their faith he said, "Man, your sins are forgiven you." 21And the scribes and the Pharisees began to question, saying, "Who is this that speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God only?" 22When Jesus perceived their questionings, he answered them, "Why do you question in your hearts? 23Which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven you,' or to say, 'Rise and walk'? 24But that you may know that the Son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins"-he said to the man who was paralyzed-"I say to you, rise, take up your bed and go home." 25And immediately he rose before them, and took up that on which he lay, and went home, glorifying God. 26And amazement seized them all, and they glorified God and were filled with awe, saying, "We have seen strange things today."
Jesus Calls Levi
27After this he went out, and saw a tax collector, named Levi, sitting at the tax office; and he said to him, "Follow me." 28And he left everything, and rose and followed him.
29And Levi made him a great feast in his house; and there was a large company of tax collectors and others sitting at tabled with them. 30And the Pharisees and their scribes murmured against his disciples, saying, "Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?" 31And Jesus answered them, "Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; 32I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance."
The Question about Fasting
33And they said to him, "The disciples of John fast often and offer prayers, and so do the disciples of the Pharisees, but yours eat and drink." 34And Jesus said to them, "Can you make wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them? 35The days will come, when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast in those days." 36He told them a parable also: "No one tears a piece from a new garment and puts it upon an old garment; if he does, he will tear the new, and the piece from the new will not match the old. 37And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; if he does, the new wine will burst the skins and it will be spilled, and the skins will be destroyed. 38But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. 39And no one after drinking old wine desires new; for he says, 'The old is good.' "e