Matthew 26

1After Jesus finished saying all these things, he said to his followers, 2”You know that the day after tomorrow is Passover. On that day the Son of Man will be given ˻to his enemies˼ to be killed on a cross.” 3Then the leading priests and the older Jewish leaders had a meeting at the palace where the high priest lived. The high priest’s name was Caiaphas. 4In the meeting, they tried to find a way to arrest Jesus without the people seeing it. They planned to arrest Jesus and kill him. 5The men in the meeting said, “We cannot arrest Jesus during Passover. We don’t want the people to become angry and cause a riot.” 6Jesus was in Bethany. He was at the house of Simon the leper. 7While Jesus was there, a woman came to him. She had an alabaster jar filled with very expensive perfume. The woman poured this perfume on Jesus’ head while Jesus was eating. 8The followers saw the woman do this and became upset at the woman. The followers asked, “Why waste that perfume? 9That perfume could be sold for much money and the money could be given to poor people.” 10But Jesus knew what happened. Jesus said, “Why are you troubling this woman? She did a very good thing for me. 11You will always have poor people with you. But you will not always have me. 12This woman poured perfume on my body. She did this to prepare me for burial after I die. 13I tell you the truth. The Good News will be told to people in all the world. And in every place where the Good News is told, the story of what this woman did will also be told. And people will remember her.” 14Then one of the twelve followers went to talk to the leading priests. This was the follower named Judas Iscariot. 15Judas said, “I will give you Jesus. What will you pay me for doing this?” The priests gave Judas 30 silver coins. 16After that time Judas waited for the best time to give Jesus to the priests. 17On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, the followers came to Jesus. The followers said, “We will prepare everything for you to eat the Passover meal. Where do you want us to have the meal?” 18Jesus answered, “Go into the city. Go to a man I know. Tell him that the teacher says, 'The chosen time is near. I will have the Passover meal with my followers at your house.’” 19The followers obeyed and did the thing Jesus told them to do. They prepared the Passover meal. 20In the evening Jesus was at the table with the twelve followers. 21They were all eating. Then Jesus said, “I tell you the truth. One of you twelve here will soon give me to my enemies.” 22The followers were very sad to hear this. Each follower said to Jesus, “Lord, surely I am not the one!” 23Jesus answered, “The man that has dipped his hand into the same bowl with me is the person that will be against me. 24The Son of Man will go ˻and die˼. The Scriptures say this will happen. But it will be very bad for the person that gives the Son of Man ˻to be killed˼. It would be better for that person if he were never born.” 25Then Judas said to Jesus, “Teacher, surely I will not be against you!” (Judas is the one that would give Jesus to his enemies.) Jesus answered, “Yes, it is you.” 26While they were eating, Jesus took some bread. Jesus thanked God for the bread and divided it. He gave the bread to his followers. Jesus said, “Take this bread and eat it. This bread is my body.” 27Then Jesus took a cup of wine. Jesus thanked God for it and gave it to the followers. Jesus said, “Every one of you drink this. 28This wine is my blood. My blood ˻(death)˼ begins the new agreement ˻from God to his people˼. This blood is given for many people to forgive their sins. 29I tell you this: I will not drink this wine again until that day when we are together in my Father’s kingdom and the wine is new. Then I will drink it again with you.” 30All the followers sang a song. Then they went out to the Mount of Olives. 31Jesus told the followers, “Tonight you will lose your faith because of me. It is written ˻in the Scriptures˼: 'I will kill the shepherd, and the sheep will run away.’ 32But ˻after I die˼, I will rise from death. Then I will go into Galilee. I will be there before you go there.” 33Peter answered, “All the other followers may lose their faith because of you. But I will never lose my faith.” 34Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth. Tonight you will say you don’t know me. You will say this three times before the rooster crows.” 35But Peter answered, “I will never say that I don’t know you! I will even die with you!” And all the other followers said the same thing. 36Then Jesus went with his followers to a place called Gethsemane. Jesus said to his followers, “Sit here while I go there and pray.” 37Jesus told Peter and the two sons of Zebedee to come with him. Then Jesus began to be very sad and troubled. 38Jesus said to Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, “My soul is full of sorrow. My heart is breaking with sadness. Stay awake here with me and wait.” 39Then Jesus walked a little farther away from them. Jesus fell to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, don’t give me this cup ˻of suffering˼. But do what you want, not what I want.” 40Then Jesus went back to his followers. Jesus found his followers sleeping. Jesus said to Peter, “You men could not stay awake with me for one hour? 41Stay awake and pray for strength against temptation. Your spirit wants to do what is right. But your body is weak.” 42Then Jesus went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this ˻painful˼ thing to be taken from me, and if I must do it, then I pray that what you want will be done.” 43Then Jesus went back to the followers. Again Jesus found them sleeping. Their eyes were very tired. 44So Jesus left them and went away one more time and prayed. This third time he prayed, he said the same thing. 45Then Jesus went back to the followers and said, “You are still sleeping and resting? The time has come for the Son of Man to be given to sinful people. 46Stand up! We must go. Here comes the man that is giving me ˻to my enemies˼.” 47While Jesus was still speaking, Judas came there. Judas was one of the twelve followers. Judas had many people with him. These people were sent from the leading priests and the older leaders of the people. These people with Judas had swords and clubs. 48Judas planned to do something to show the people which man was Jesus. Judas said, “The man I kiss is Jesus. Arrest him.” 49So Judas went to Jesus and said, “Hello, teacher!” Then Judas kissed Jesus. 50Jesus answered, “Friend, do the thing you came to do.” Then the men came and grabbed Jesus and arrested him. 51When that happened, one of the followers with Jesus grabbed his sword and pulled it out. This follower hit the servant of the high priest with the sword and cut off his ear. 52Jesus said to the man, “Put your sword back in its place. People that use swords will be killed with swords. 53Surely you know I could ask my Father and he would give me more than twelve armies of angels. 54But this thing must happen this way so that it will be like the Scriptures said.” 55Then Jesus said to all the people, “You came to get me with swords and clubs like I am a criminal. Every day I sat in the temple area teaching. You did not arrest me there. 56But all these things have happened so that it will be like the prophets wrote.” Then all of Jesus’ followers left him and ran away. 57The men that arrested Jesus led him to the house of Caiaphas the high priest. The teachers of the law and the older Jewish leaders were gathered there. 58Peter followed Jesus, but he did not come near Jesus. Peter followed Jesus to the yard of the high priest’s house. He went in and sat with the guards. Peter wanted to see what would happen to Jesus. 59The leading priests and the Jewish council tried to find something against Jesus so that they could kill him. They tried to find people to lie and say that Jesus had done wrong. 60Many people came and told false things about Jesus. But the council could find no real reason to kill Jesus. Then two people came 61and said, “This man ˻(Jesus)˼ said, 'I can destroy the temple of God and build it again in three days.’” 62Then the high priest stood and said to Jesus, “These people have said things against you. Do you have something to say about these charges against you? Are these people telling the truth?” 63But Jesus said nothing. Again the high priest said to Jesus, “You are now under oath. I command you by the power of the living God to tell us the truth. Tell us, are you the Christ, the Son of God?” 64Jesus answered, “Yes, I am. But I tell you, in the future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right side of God. And you will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven.” 65When the high priest heard this, ˻he was very angry˼. He tore his clothes and said, “This man has said things that are against God! We don’t need any more witnesses. You all heard him say these things against God. 66What do you think?” The Jewish leaders answered, “He is guilty, and he must die.” 67Then they spit in Jesus’ face. And they hit him with their fists. Other people slapped Jesus. 68They said, “Show us that you are a prophet, Christ! Tell us who hit you!” 69At that time, Peter was sitting in the yard. A servant girl came to Peter. The girl said, “You were with Jesus, that man from Galilee.” 70But Peter said that he was never with Jesus. He said this to all the people there. Peter said, “I don’t know what you are talking about.” 71Then Peter left the yard. At the gate, another girl saw him. The girl said to the people there, “This man was with Jesus of Nazareth.” 72Again, Peter said that he was never with Jesus. Peter said, “I promise to God that I don’t know this man Jesus!” 73A short time later, some people standing there went to Peter and said, “We know you are one of those men that followed Jesus. We know this because of the way you talk.” 74Then Peter began to curse. He said strongly, “I promise to God that I don’t know this man Jesus!” After Peter said this, a rooster crowed. 75Then Peter remembered what Jesus had told him: “Before the rooster crows, you will say three times that you don’t know me.” Then Peter went outside and cried bitterly.

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