The Life and Teachings
of Jesus
A Restatement of the Gospels

58. Open Conflict with the Scribes and Pharisees

        22Then a blind and dumb demonic was brought to him, and he healed him, so that the dumb man spoke and saw. 23And all the people were amazed and said, “Can this be the son of David?”a 24But when the Pharisees heard it they said, “It is only by Beelzebub, the prince of demons, that this man casts out demons.”
        25Knowing their thoughts, he said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and no city or house divided against itself will stand. 26And if Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself; how then shall his kingdom stand? 29Or how can one enter a strong man's house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man? 27And if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges. 28But if it is by the spirit of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. 30He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters. 31Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit shall not be forgiven.”
        33“You must either make the tree good and its fruit good, else will the tree become corrupt and its fruit corrupt. The tree is known by its fruit.b 34You brood of vipers! how can you bring forth good, when you have already chosen evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. 35The good man out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil man out of his evil treasure brings forth evil.”
        38Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to him, “Teacher, we wish to see a sign from you.”
        39But he answered them, “An evil and faithless generation seeks for a sign; but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. 40For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”
        (Mt. 12:22–26, 29, 27–28, 30–31, 33–35, 38–40)

a   “the son of David”—The “son of David” was a commonly accepted title for the promised Messiah. (See also Ch. 13, fn. c.)

b   “The tree is known by its fruit.”—Paul, in his letter to the Galatians, lists some of the fruit of the spirit as “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, [and] self-control.” (Gal. 5:22)

Mt. 12:26  then shall his (KJV) / then will his (RSV)
Mt. 12:31  blasphemy shall be (KJV) / blasphemy will be (RSV) • spirit shall not (KJV) / spirit will not (RSV)
Mt. 12:33  you must either (Phi) / Either (RSV) • good, else will the tree become corrupt and its fruit corrupt / good; or make the tree bad and its fruit bad. (RSV) • The / For the (RSV)
Mt. 12:34  you bring forth good / speak good (RSV) • you have already chosen evil / you are evil (RSV)
Mt. 12:39  and faithless generation (Gspd) / and adulterous generation (RSV)   (153:4/1713–4)