The Message

Matthew 4

The Test

11-3 Next Jesus was taken into the wild by the Spirit for the Test. The Devil was ready to give it. Jesus prepared for the Test by fasting forty days and forty nights. That left him, of course, in a state of extreme hunger, which the Devil took advantage of in the first test: “Since you are God’s Son, speak the word that will turn these stones into loaves of bread.”

Jesus answered by quoting Deuteronomy: “It takes more than bread to stay alive. It takes a steady stream of words from God’s mouth.”

5-6 For the second test the Devil took him to the Holy City. He sat him on top of the Temple and said, “Since you are God’s Son, jump.” The Devil goaded him by quoting Psalm 91: “He has placed you in the care of angels. They will catch you so that you won’t so much as stub your toe on a stone.”

Jesus countered with another citation from Deuteronomy: “Don’t you dare test the Lord your God.”

8-9 For the third test, the Devil took him to the peak of a huge mountain. He gestured expansively, pointing out all the earth’s kingdoms, how glorious they all were. Then he said, “They’re yours—lock, stock, and barrel. Just go down on your knees and worship me, and they’re yours.”

10 Jesus’ refusal was curt: “Beat it, Satan!” He backed his rebuke with a third quotation from Deuteronomy: “Worship the Lord your God, and only him. Serve him with absolute single-heartedness.”

11 The Test was over. The Devil left. And in his place, angels! Angels came and took care of Jesus’ needs.

Teaching and Healing

12-17 When Jesus got word that John had been arrested, he returned to Galilee. He moved from his hometown, Nazareth, to the lakeside village Capernaum, nestled at the base of the Zebulun and Naphtali hills. This move completed Isaiah’s sermon:

Land of Zebulun, land of Naphtali,
    road to the sea, over Jordan,
    Galilee, crossroads for the nations.
People sitting out their lives in the dark
    saw a huge light;
Sitting in that dark, dark country of death,
    they watched the sun come up.

This Isaiah-prophesied sermon came to life in Galilee the moment Jesus started preaching. He picked up where John left off: “Change your life. God’s kingdom is here.”

18-20 Walking along the beach of Lake Galilee, Jesus saw two brothers: Simon (later called Peter) and Andrew. They were fishing, throwing their nets into the lake. It was their regular work. Jesus said to them, “Come with me. I’ll make a new kind of fisherman out of you. I’ll show you how to catch men and women instead of perch and bass.” They didn’t ask questions, but simply dropped their nets and followed.

21-22 A short distance down the beach they came upon another pair of brothers, James and John, Zebedee’s sons. These two were sitting in a boat with their father, Zebedee, mending their fishnets. Jesus made the same offer to them, and they were just as quick to follow, abandoning boat and father.

23-25 From there he went all over Galilee. He used synagogues for meeting places and taught people the truth of God. God’s kingdom was his theme—that beginning right now they were under God’s government, a good government! He also healed people of their diseases and of the bad effects of their bad lives. Word got around the entire Roman province of Syria. People brought anybody with an ailment, whether mental, emotional, or physical. Jesus healed them, one and all. More and more people came, the momentum gathering. Besides those from Galilee, crowds came from the “Ten Towns” across the lake, others up from Jerusalem and Judea, still others from across the Jordan.

Chinese Contemporary Bible (Traditional)

馬太福音 4


1後來,耶穌被聖靈帶到曠野,去受魔鬼的試探。 耶穌禁食了四十晝夜後,很饑餓。 試探者前來對祂說:「如果你是上帝的兒子,可以叫這些石頭變成食物。」


魔鬼又帶祂進聖城,讓祂站在聖殿的最高處, 說:「如果你是上帝的兒子,就跳下去吧!因為聖經上說,『上帝會差遣祂的天使用手托住你,不讓你的腳碰在石頭上。』」


魔鬼再帶耶穌到一座極高的山上,把世上萬國及其榮華富貴展示給祂看, 說:「如果你俯伏敬拜我,我就把這一切都給你。」

10 耶穌說:「撒旦,走開!聖經上說,『要敬拜主——你的上帝,單單事奉祂。』」

11 於是魔鬼離開了耶穌,這時有天使前來伺候祂。


12 耶穌聽見約翰被捕入獄,就回到加利利。 13 後來,祂離開拿撒勒去迦百農住。迦百農靠近湖邊,在西布倫和拿弗他利地區。 14 這就應驗了以賽亞先知的話:

15 「西布倫、拿弗他利、
16 你們住在黑暗中的人看見了大光,

17 從那時起,耶穌開始傳道:「悔改吧,因爲天國臨近了!」


18 耶穌沿著加利利湖邊行走的時候,看見被稱為彼得的西門和安得烈兩兄弟正在撒網打魚,他們是漁夫。 19 耶穌對他們說:「來跟從我!我要使你們成為得人的漁夫。」 20 他們立刻撇下漁網,跟從了耶穌。 21 耶穌再往前走,又看見雅各和約翰兩兄弟正和父親西庇太一起在船上補漁網。耶穌呼召他們, 22 他們馬上離開漁船,辭別父親,跟從了耶穌。


23 耶穌走遍加利利,在各個會堂裡教導人,宣講天國的福音,醫治人們各樣的疾病。 24 祂的名聲傳遍了整個敘利亞。人們把一切患病的,就是患各種疾病的、疼痛的、癲癇的、癱瘓的,以及被鬼附身的都帶到祂面前,祂都醫治了他們。 25 因此,有大群的人跟從了祂,他們來自加利利、低加坡里、耶路撒冷、猶太和約旦河東。