At another time, when He went to the synagogue, there was a man there with one arm shrivelled up.
They closely watched Him to see whether He would cure him on the Sabbath--so as to have a charge to bring against Him.
'Come forward,' said He to the man with the shrivelled arm.
Then He asked them, 'Are we allowed to do good on the Sabbath, or to do evil? to save a life, or to destroy one?' They remained silent.
Grieved and indignant at the hardening of their hearts, He looked round on them with anger, and said to the man, 'Stretch out your arm.' He stretched it out, and the arm was completely restored.
But no sooner had the Pharisees left the synagogue than they held a consultation with the Herodians against Jesus, to devise some means of destroying Him.
Accordingly Jesus withdrew with His disciples to the Lake, and a vast crowd of people from Galilee followed Him;
and from Judaea and Jerusalem and Idumaea and from beyond the Jordan and from the district of Tyre and Sidon there came to Him a vast crowd, hearing of all that He was doing.
So He gave directions to His disciples to keep a small boat in constant attendance on Him because of the throng--to prevent their crushing Him.
For He had cured many of the people, so that all who had any ailments pressed upon Him, to touch Him.
And the foul spirits, whenever they saw Him, threw themselves down at His feet, screaming out: 'You are the Son of God.'
But He many a time checked them, forbidding them to say who He was.
Then He went up the hill; and those whom He Himself chose He called, and they came to Him.
He appointed twelve of them, that they might be with Him, and that He might also send them to proclaim His Message,
with authority to expel the demons.
These twelve were Simon (to whom He gave the surname of Peter),
James the son of Zabdi and John the brother of James (these two He surnamed Boanerges, that is 'Sons of Thunder'),
Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the Cananaean,
and Judas Iscariot, the man who also betrayed Him.
And He went into a house. But again the crowd assembled, so that there was no opportunity for them even to snatch a meal.
Hearing of this, His relatives came to seize Him by force, for they said, 'He is out of his mind.'
The Scribes, too, who had come down from Jerusalem said, 'He has Baal-zebul in him; and it is by the power of the Prince of the demons that he expels the demons.'
So He called them to Him, and using figurative language He appealed to them, saying, 'How is it possible for Satan to expel Satan?
For if civil war breaks out in a kingdom, nothing can make that kingdom last;
and if a family splits into parties, that family cannot continue.
So if Satan has risen in arms and has made war upon himself, stand he cannot, but meets his end.
Nay, no one can go into a strong man's house and carry off his property, unless he first binds the strong man, and then he will plunder his house.
In solemn truth I tell you that all their sins may be pardoned to the sons of men, and all their blasphemies, however they may have blasphemed;
but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit, he remains for ever unabsolved: he is guilty of a sin of the Ages.'
This was because they said, 'He is possessed by a foul spirit.'
By this time His mother and His brothers arrive, and standing outside they send a message to Him to call Him.
Now a crowd was sitting round Him; so they tell Him, 'Your mother and your brothers and sisters are outside, inquiring for you.'
'Who are my mother and my brothers?' He replied.
And, fixing His eyes on the people who were sitting round Him in a circle, He said,
'Here are my mother and my brothers. For wherever there is one who has been obedient to God, there is my brother--my sister--and my mother.'