18:1 Later he told them an analogy to illustrate that they should always pray and not become discouraged:
18:2 He said, “In a town there was a judge who didn’t fear God and didn’t care what people thought.
18:3 There was a widow in the city and she approached him and asked, ‘Please grant me justice with my adversary.’
18:4 For awhile, he was unwilling, but later he thought, ‘Even though I don’t fear God nor care what people think –
18:5 because this widow keeps bothering me, I will grant her justice. Otherwise, she will wear me out with her continual pleas.’”
18:6 Then the Master said, “Listen to what the unrighteous judge said –
18:7 now won’t God deliver justice to His devoted ones, who cry to Him day and night? Will He continue to make them wait?
18:8 I say to you that He will deliver justice to them immediately. How else can the Servant of HumanityF establish faith in the material world?”
18:9 Then he also told this analogy to those who were confident they were devoted and looked upon others with contempt:
18:10 “Two men came into the temple to pray. One was a pharisee and the other was a tax collector.
18:11 The pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like others – thieves, cheaters, adulterers or even like this tax collector.
18:12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of everything I receive.’
18:13 Meanwhile the tax collector stood a ways off and couldn’t even lift his eyes up to heaven. Rather, he beat his chest and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’
18:14 I tell you, this man returned to his house purified, while the other didn’t. For anyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but one who humbles himself will be exalted.”
18:15 Then some people brought him children so he could lay his hands upon them. But when his disciples saw this, they began reproaching them.
18:16 Then Jesus chastised them, saying, “Let the children come to me and don’t hinder them – because the sanctuary of God belongs to those like these.”
18:17 Truly I tell you, whoever doesn’t accept the sanctuary of God like a child will not enter into it at all.”
18:18 A magistrate asked him, “Honorable Teacher, what should I do to inherit eternal life?”
18:19 Jesus answered him, “Why do you call me honorable? No one is honorable except God alone.
18:20 You know the commandments: Don’t commit adultery, don’t murder, don’t steal, don’t lie, respect your father and mother.”
18:21 The man replied, “I’ve kept all these things since I was young.”
18:22 When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “There is still one thing you lack: Sell everything you possess and distribute it to the poor and you will have your treasure in the spiritual realm – then return and follow me.”
18:23 But when he heard this he became disappointed, because he was very wealthy.
18:24 Then Jesus looked at him and said, “How hard it is for those who are materialistic to enter the sanctuary of God!
18:25 It is easier for a camel to enter through the eye of a needle than for the materialistic person to enter the sanctuary of God.
18:26 Those who heard this said, “Then who can be saved?”
18:27 But Jesus replied, “What is impossible for people is possible with God.”
18:28 Peter said, “But we’ve left our homes to follow you.”
18:29 Then he told them, “Truly I tell you, no one who has left home, wife, brothers, parents or children for the sake of the sanctuary of God –
18:30 will not fail to receive many times as much – whether in this life or in the eternal lifetime to come.
18:31 Then he took the twelve aside and told them, “Look, we will be headed up to Jerusalem and everything written about the Servant of Humanity through the Prophets will be accomplished.
18:32 He will be handed over to the materialists and will be mocked and mistreated and spit upon.
18:33 And after they have whipped him, they will murder his body – but on the third day he will appear.”
18:34 But his students didn’t understand these things, as the meaning of his statements was hidden from them. So they didn’t understand what was said.
18:35 As Jesus neared Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the road begging.
18:36 As he heard the crowd passing, he began to ask what was going on.
18:37 They told him that Jesus of Nazareth was passing by.
18:38 So he called out, “Jesus, Servant of David, have mercy upon me!”
18:39 Those in front scolded him and told him to be quiet. But he kept crying out – “Servant of David – have mercy upon me!”
18:40 Jesus stopped and requested the man be brought to him. When he had been brought up, Jesus asked him:
18:41 “What do you want me to do for you?” The man replied, “Master, I want to regain my sight.”
18:42 So Jesus told him, “Your faith has healed you. Receive your sight.”
18:43 Suddenly he regained his sight and began following him and glorifying God. When everyone saw this they praised God.