Now the LORD appeared to him by the oaks of Mamre, while he was sitting at the tent door in the heat of the day.
When he lifted up his eyes and looked, behold, three men were standing opposite him; and when he saw [them], he ran from the tent door to meet them and bowed himself to the earth,
and said, "My lord, if now I have found favor in your sight, please do not pass your servant by.
"Please let a little water be brought and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree;
and I will bring a piece of bread, that you may refresh yourselves; after that you may go on, since you have visited your servant." And they said, "So do, as you have said."
So Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah, and said, "Quickly, prepare three measures of fine flour, knead [it] and make bread cakes."
Abraham also ran to the herd, and took a tender and choice calf and gave [it] to the servant, and he hurried to prepare it.
He took curds and milk and the calf which he had prepared, and placed [it] before them; and he was standing by them under the tree as they ate.
Then they said to him, "Where is Sarah your wife?" And he said, "There, in the tent."
He said, "I will surely return to you at this time next year; and behold, Sarah your wife will have a son." And Sarah was listening at the tent door, which was behind him.
Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in age; Sarah was past childbearing.
Sarah laughed to herself, saying, "After I have become old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?"
And the LORD said to Abraham, "Why did Sarah laugh, saying, 'Shall I indeed bear [a child], when I am [so] old?'
"Is anything too difficult for the LORD? At the appointed time I will return to you, at this time next year, and Sarah will have a son."
Sarah denied [it] however, saying, "I did not laugh"; for she was afraid. And He said, "No, but you did laugh."
Then the men rose up from there, and looked down toward Sodom; and Abraham was walking with them to send them off.
The LORD said, "Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do,
since Abraham will surely become a great and mighty nation, and in him all the nations of the earth will be blessed?
"For I have chosen him, so that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice, so that the LORD may bring upon Abraham what He has spoken about him."
And the LORD said, "The outcry of Sodom and Gomorrah is indeed great, and their sin is exceedingly grave.
"I will go down now, and see if they have done entirely according to its outcry, which has come to Me; and if not, I will know."
Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, while Abraham was still standing before the LORD.
Abraham came near and said, "Will You indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked?
"Suppose there are fifty righteous within the city; will You indeed sweep [it] away and not spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous who are in it?
"Far be it from You to do such a thing, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous and the wicked are [treated] alike. Far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth deal justly?"
So the LORD said, "If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare the whole place on their account."
And Abraham replied, "Now behold, I have ventured to speak to the Lord, although I am [but] dust and ashes.
"Suppose the fifty righteous are lacking five, will You destroy the whole city because of five?" And He said, "I will not destroy [it] if I find forty-five there."
He spoke to Him yet again and said, "Suppose forty are found there?" And He said, "I will not do [it] on account of the forty."
Then he said, "Oh may the Lord not be angry, and I shall speak; suppose thirty are found there?" And He said, "I will not do [it] if I find thirty there."
And he said, "Now behold, I have ventured to speak to the Lord; suppose twenty are found there?" And He said, "I will not destroy [it] on account of the twenty."
Then he said, "Oh may the Lord not be angry, and I shall speak only this once; suppose ten are found there?" And He said, "I will not destroy [it] on account of the ten."
As soon as He had finished speaking to Abraham the LORD departed, and Abraham returned to his place.
Now the two angels came to Sodom in the evening as Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw [them], he rose to meet them and bowed down [with his] face to the ground.
And he said, "Now behold, my lords, please turn aside into your servant's house, and spend the night, and wash your feet; then you may rise early and go on your way." They said however, "No, but we shall spend the night in the square."
Yet he urged them strongly, so they turned aside to him and entered his house; and he prepared a feast for them, and baked unleavened bread, and they ate.
Before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom, surrounded the house, both young and old, all the people from every quarter;
and they called to Lot and said to him, "Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us that we may have relations with them."
But Lot went out to them at the doorway, and shut the door behind him,
and said, "Please, my brothers, do not act wickedly.
"Now behold, I have two daughters who have not had relations with man; please let me bring them out to you, and do to them whatever you like; only do nothing to these men, inasmuch as they have come under the shelter of my roof."
But they said, "Stand aside." Furthermore, they said, "This one came in as an alien, and already he is acting like a judge; now we will treat you worse than them." So they pressed hard against Lot and came near to break the door.
But the men reached out their hands and brought Lot into the house with them, and shut the door.
They struck the men who were at the doorway of the house with blindness, both small and great, so that they wearied [themselves trying] to find the doorway.
Then the [two] men said to Lot, "Whom else have you here? A son-in-law, and your sons, and your daughters, and whomever you have in the city, bring [them] out of the place;
for we are about to destroy this place, because their outcry has become so great before the LORD that the LORD has sent us to destroy it."
Lot went out and spoke to his sons-in-law, who were to marry his daughters, and said, "Up, get out of this place, for the LORD will destroy the city." But he appeared to his sons-in-law to be jesting.
When morning dawned, the angels urged Lot, saying, "Up, take your wife and your two daughters who are here, or you will be swept away in the punishment of the city."
But he hesitated. So the men seized his hand and the hand of his wife and the hands of his two daughters, for the compassion of the LORD [was] upon him; and they brought him out, and put him outside the city.
When they had brought them outside, one said, "Escape for your life! Do not look behind you, and do not stay anywhere in the valley; escape to the mountains, or you will be swept away."
But Lot said to them, "Oh no, my lords!
"Now behold, your servant has found favor in your sight, and you have magnified your lovingkindness, which you have shown me by saving my life; but I cannot escape to the mountains, for the disaster will overtake me and I will die;
now behold, this town is near [enough] to flee to, and it is small. Please, let me escape there (is it not small?) that my life may be saved."
He said to him, "Behold, I grant you this request also, not to overthrow the town of which you have spoken.
"Hurry, escape there, for I cannot do anything until you arrive there." Therefore the name of the town was called Zoar.
The sun had risen over the earth when Lot came to Zoar.
Then the LORD rained on Sodom and Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven,
and He overthrew those cities, and all the valley, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground.
But his wife, from behind him, looked [back], and she became a pillar of salt.
Now Abraham arose early in the morning [and went] to the place where he had stood before the LORD;
and he looked down toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the valley, and he saw, and behold, the smoke of the land ascended like the smoke of a furnace.
Thus it came about, when God destroyed the cities of the valley, that God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow, when He overthrew the cities in which Lot lived.
Lot went up from Zoar, and stayed in the mountains, and his two daughters with him; for he was afraid to stay in Zoar; and he stayed in a cave, he and his two daughters.
Then the firstborn said to the younger, "Our father is old, and there is not a man on earth to come in to us after the manner of the earth.
"Come, let us make our father drink wine, and let us lie with him that we may preserve our family through our father."
So they made their father drink wine that night, and the firstborn went in and lay with her father; and he did not know when she lay down or when she arose.
On the following day, the firstborn said to the younger, "Behold, I lay last night with my father; let us make him drink wine tonight also; then you go in and lie with him, that we may preserve our family through our father."
So they made their father drink wine that night also, and the younger arose and lay with him; and he did not know when she lay down or when she arose.
Thus both the daughters of Lot were with child by their father.
The firstborn bore a son, and called his name Moab; he is the father of the Moabites to this day.
As for the younger, she also bore a son, and called his name Ben-ammi; he is the father of the sons of Ammon to this day.
When He had completed all His discourse in the hearing of the people, He went to Capernaum.
And a centurion's slave, who was highly regarded by him, was sick and about to die.
When he heard about Jesus, he sent some Jewish elders asking Him to come and save the life of his slave.
When they came to Jesus, they earnestly implored Him, saying, "He is worthy for You to grant this to him;
for he loves our nation and it was he who built us our synagogue."
Now Jesus [started] on His way with them; and when He was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends, saying to Him, "Lord, do not trouble Yourself further, for I am not worthy for You to come under my roof;
for this reason I did not even consider myself worthy to come to You, but [just] say the word, and my servant will be healed.
"For I also am a man placed under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to this one, 'Go!' and he goes, and to another, 'Come!' and he comes, and to my slave, 'Do this!' and he does it."
Now when Jesus heard this, He marveled at him, and turned and said to the crowd that was following Him, "I say to you, not even in Israel have I found such great faith."
When those who had been sent returned to the house, they found the slave in good health.
Soon afterwards He went to a city called Nain; and His disciples were going along with Him, accompanied by a large crowd.
Now as He approached the gate of the city, a dead man was being carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow; and a sizeable crowd from the city was with her.
When the Lord saw her, He felt compassion for her, and said to her, "Do not weep."
And He came up and touched the coffin; and the bearers came to a halt. And He said, "Young man, I say to you, arise!"
The dead man sat up and began to speak. And [Jesus] gave him back to his mother.
Fear gripped them all, and they [began] glorifying God, saying, "A great prophet has arisen among us!" and, "God has visited His people!"
This report concerning Him went out all over Judea and in all the surrounding district.
The disciples of John reported to him about all these things.
Summoning two of his disciples, John sent them to the Lord, saying, "Are You the Expected One, or do we look for someone else?"
When the men came to Him, they said, "John the Baptist has sent us to You, to ask, 'Are You the Expected One, or do we look for someone else?'"
At that very time He cured many [people] of diseases and afflictions and evil spirits; and He gave sight to many [who were] blind.
And He answered and said to them, "Go and report to John what you have seen and heard: [the] BLIND RECEIVE SIGHT, [the] lame walk, [the] lepers are cleansed, and [the] deaf hear, [the] dead are raised up, [the] POOR HAVE THE GOSPEL PREACHED TO THEM.
"Blessed is he who does not take offense at Me."
When the messengers of John had left, He began to speak to the crowds about John, "What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind?
"But what did you go out to see? A man dressed in soft clothing? Those who are splendidly clothed and live in luxury are [found] in royal palaces!
"But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and one who is more than a prophet.
"This is the one about whom it is written, 'BEHOLD, I SEND MY MESSENGER AHEAD OF YOU, WHO WILL PREPARE YOUR WAY BEFORE YOU.'
"I say to you, among those born of women there is no one greater than John; yet he who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he."
When all the people and the tax collectors heard [this], they acknowledged God's justice, having been baptized with the baptism of John.
But the Pharisees and the lawyers rejected God's purpose for themselves, not having been baptized by John.
"To what then shall I compare the men of this generation, and what are they like?
"They are like children who sit in the market place and call to one another, and they say, 'We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we sang a dirge, and you did not weep.'
"For John the Baptist has come eating no bread and drinking no wine, and you say, 'He has a demon!'
"The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, 'Behold, a gluttonous man and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!'
"Yet wisdom is vindicated by all her children."
Now one of the Pharisees was requesting Him to dine with him, and He entered the Pharisee's house and reclined [at the table].
And there was a woman in the city who was a sinner; and when she learned that He was reclining [at the table] in the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster vial of perfume,
and standing behind [Him] at His feet, weeping, she began to wet His feet with her tears, and kept wiping them with the hair of her head, and kissing His feet and anointing them with the perfume.
Now when the Pharisee who had invited Him saw this, he said to himself, "If this man were a prophet He would know who and what sort of person this woman is who is touching Him, that she is a sinner."
And Jesus answered him, "Simon, I have something to say to you." And he replied, "Say it, Teacher."
"A moneylender had two debtors: one owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty.
"When they were unable to repay, he graciously forgave them both. So which of them will love him more?"
Simon answered and said, "I suppose the one whom he forgave more." And He said to him, "You have judged correctly."
Turning toward the woman, He said to Simon, "Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has wet My feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair.
"You gave Me no kiss; but she, since the time I came in, has not ceased to kiss My feet.
"You did not anoint My head with oil, but she anointed My feet with perfume.
"For this reason I say to you, her sins, which are many, have been forgiven, for she loved much; but he who is forgiven little, loves little."
Then He said to her, "Your sins have been forgiven."
Those who were reclining [at the table] with Him began to say to themselves, "Who is this [man] who even forgives sins?"
And He said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you; go in peace."