The Sayings of Jesus : an English language reconstruction of Papias' LOGIA

"... Jesus was a poet of no mean ability ..."
J.W.Bowman in Peak's Commentary on the Bible (1962), p.738
Each of the four sections has a general theme, indicated in its first saying.
I have labelled the sections as follows:

A = Entering the kingdom
B = The mission of the kingdom
C = The coming kingdom
D = Hindrances to the kingdom
Blessed are the poor, for theirs is the kingdom of God.
Blessed are the hungry, for they shall be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you,
and say all sorts of evil against you on account of the Son of Man.
Rejoice and be glad for your reward will be great in heaven,
for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
You are the salt of the earth; but if salt becomes insipid, how will you season it?
It is no longer fit for the earth or the dunghill, but is thrown out and trodden underfoot.
No one after lighting a lamp
puts it under a measuring bowl,
but on a lampstand,
and it gives light to all in the house.
It is easier for heaven and earth to pass away
than for one stroke in a letter of the law to be dropped.
While you are on the way to court with your accuser, come to terms with him promptly;
otherwise he may hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the officer.
And you will be thrown into jail.
Truly I tell you, you will not be let out from there until you have paid the last penny.
If your right hand is causing your downfall,
cut it off and throw it away;
it is better for you to enter life maimed
than that your whole body be thrown into hell.

And if your right eye is causing your downfall,
pluck it out and throw it away;
it is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye
than with two eyes to be thrown into hell.
Any man who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery,
and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.
If anyone strikes you on the right cheek, offer him the other as well;
and if anyone wants to sue you to get your shirt, let him have your coat as well.
Give to anyone who begs from you,
and from one who borrows, do not ask to get back what is yours.

Love your enemies and pray for those who abuse you,
so that you may become sons of your Father,
for he makes the sun shine on the evil and the good,
and sends rain on the just and the unjust.

For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have?
Do not even the tax collectors do the same?
And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what reward do you have?
Do not even the Gentiles do the same?

So be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.
Can a blind man lead a blind man?
Will they not both fall into a pit?
A disciple is not above his teacher;
it is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher.
Whoever does not change and become again like a child
will never enter the kingdom of God.
It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle
than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.
Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye,
but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?

How can you say to your brother: "Let me take the speck out of your eye",
when there is a log in your own eye?

You hypocrite! First take the log out of your own eye,
and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye.
Do not judge, and you will not be judged;
for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.
Do not give your rings to the dogs,
and do not throw your pearls to the pigs,
lest they trample them underfoot
and turn to attack you.
Enter by the narrow gate.

For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction,
and those who enter through it are many.
But the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life,
and those who find it are few.
Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing
but inwardly are ravenous wolves.
You will know them by their fruits.
Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles?

Every good tree bears pleasant fruit,
but the rotten tree bears evil fruit.
A good tree cannot bear evil fruit,
nor can a rotten tree bear pleasant fruit.
The good person out of good treasure produces good things,
and the evil person out of evil treasure produces evil things.
Good words cannot come from people who are evil,
for out of the fullness of the heart the mouth speaks.
Ask, and you will receive;
seek, and you will find;
knock, and the door will be opened to you.

For everyone who asks, receives;
and whoever seeks, finds;
and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

Which person among you, if your son asks you for a fish, will give him a snake?
Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?
So if you who are evil know how to give good gifts to your children,
how much more will the heavenly Father give good things to those who ask him?
Just as you want people to do to you,
so you should do to them.
Not everyone who says to me: "Master, master" will enter the kingdom of God,
but whoever does the will of the Father.
On that day many will say to me: "We ate and drank with you, and you taught in our streets".
But I will declare to them: "I do not know you; depart from me you evildoers".
Everyone who hears my words and does them,
is like a man who built his house on rock.
The rain came down, the floods rose, the winds blew and battered that house;
but it did not fall because it had been founded on rock.

And everyone who hears my words and does not do them,
is like a man who built his house on sand.
The rain came down, the floods rose, the winds blew and battered that house;
and immediately it collapsed, and it fell with a great crash.

Someone said to him: "Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go".
And Jesus said to him: "Foxes have dens,
and birds of the sky have nests,
but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head".

To another he said: "Follow me".
But he said: "Master, first let me go and bury my father".
But he said to him: "Let the dead bury their own dead;
but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God".
If anyone gives even a cup of cold water
to one of these little ones
because he is a disciple,
Truly I tell you he will certainly not lose his reward.
The harvest is plentiful,
but the workers are few,
so ask the owner of the harvest
to send out workers into his harvest.
Go nowhere among the Gentiles,
and do not enter any Samaritan town,
but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

Preach as you go saying: "The kingdom of God is getting near".
Carry no money, no bag, no sandals, nor a staff,
and greet no one on the way.

Whatever house you enter, first say: "Peace to this house".
And if a son of peace is there, your peace shall rest upon him;
but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you.

And stay in the same house,
eating and drinking whatever they provide,
for the worker deserves his pay.

But if you enter a town and they do not receive you,
as you leave that town shake the dust from your feet as a testimony against them.
I tell you, it will be more tolerable on that day for Sodom than for that town.
Look, I am sending you out like lambs among wolves;
so be wary as snakes and innocent as doves.
You will be hated by all for my name's sake.
But he who endures to the end will be saved.
When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next;
for you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.
When they arraign you before synagogues, do not worry about how you are to answer or what you are to say;
for it will be given to you at that time what to say.
Nothing is hidden that will not be made known,
or secret that will not come to light.
What I say to you in the dark, speak in the light;
and what you hear whispered in the inner rooms, proclaim on the housetops.

Do not be afraid of those who can kill the body but cannot kill the soul.
Rather fear the one who is able to destroy both body and soul in hell.
Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?
Yet not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father's consent.
Moreover even the hairs of your head have all been counted.
So do not be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

Everyone who acknowledges me in front of others,
the Son of Man also will acknowledge in front of the angels of God;
but whoever disowns me in front of others,
the Son of Man will disown in front of the angels of God.
Do you think that I have come to bring peace on earth?
I did not come to bring peace but a sword.
For I have come to set son against father,
and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.
Whoever does not hate his father and mother cannot be my disciple.
Whoever does not hate his son and daughter cannot be my disciple.
Whoever does not take up his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.
Whoever wants to save his life will lose it,
but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it.
Whoever welcomes you welcomes me,
and whoever welcomes me welcomes him who sent me.
Whoever is not with me is against me,
and whoever does not gather with me scatters.

In praying do not go babbling on as the Gentiles do,
for they think they will be heard for their many words.
Do not be like them,
for your Father knows what your needs are before you ask him.
Pray then like this:

"Our Father who is in heaven,
may your name be honoured,
may your kingdom come,
may your will be done,
as in heaven also on earth.

Give us the bread we need daily;
and forgive us our wrongs,
as we also forgive those who have wronged us;
and do not put us to the test,
but save us from evil."
Many are called,
but few are chosen.
The eye is the lamp of the body.

So if your eye is healthy,
your whole body will be full of light.

But if your eye is not healthy,
your whole body will be full of darkness.

So if the light within you is darkness,
how great must be the darkness.
Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar,
and to God what belongs to God.
It is an evil generation which demands a sign.

But no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah.
For as Jonah became a sign to the people of Nineveh,
so the Son of Man will be to this generation.

The queen of the South will arise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it.
For she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon,
and look, something greater than Solomon is here.

The men of Nineveh will arise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it.
For they repented at the preaching of Jonah,
and look, something greater than Jonah is here.
Blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear.
For I tell you, many prophets and kings desired to see what you see, and did not see it;
and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.
A woman said to him: "Blessed is the womb that bore you, and the breasts that you sucked!"
But he said: "Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and comply with it."
If your brother wrongs you, rebuke him, and if he repents, you must forgive him.
And if one day he wrongs you seven times, you must forgive him seven times.
Occasions for stumbling are bound to come,
but woe to him by whom they come.
It would be better for him if a millstone were hung round his neck and he were thrown into the sea,
than that he should cause the downfall of one of these little ones.
You know that among the Gentiles their so-called rulers lord it over them,
and their great men exercise authority over them.

It shall not be so among you.

But whoever would be great among you must be your servant,
and whoever would be first among you must be your slave.
Everyone who exalts himself will be humbled,
and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.
Truly I tell you, among those standing here there are some who will not taste death
before they see the kingdom of God come with power.
When you see a cloud rising in the west,
you say at once: "A shower is coming"; and so it happens.

And when you see the south wind blowing,
you say: "There will be scorching heat"; and it happens.

You hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of the earth and the sky;
so why do you not know how to interpret the present time?
What is the kingdom of God like, and to what should I compare it?
It is like a mustard seed which a man took and sowed in the earth.
It grew and became a tree, and the birds of the sky made nests in its branches.

To what should I compare the kingdom of God?
It is like yeast which a woman took and mixed with three measures of flour
until it was fully fermented.
What man among you having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them,
does not leave the ninety-nine in the hills and go after the one which is lost?
And when he finds it, I tell you that he rejoices more over that one sheep
than over the ninety-nine that did not go astray.

Or what woman having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin,
does not light the lamp and sweep the house and search until she finds it?
And when she finds it, she calls together her friends and neighbours saying:
"Rejoice with me, for I've found the coin which I had lost".
Nobody can serve two masters;
for either he will hate the one and love the other,
or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.
You cannot serve God and wealth.
If you had faith like a mustard seed,
you could say to this mulberry tree:
"Be rooted up and planted in the sea",
and it would obey you.
Do not store up for yourselves treasure on earth,
where moths consume,
and where thieves break in and steal.
But store up for yourselves treasure in heaven,
where no thief comes near,
and no moth destroys.
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat,
or about your body, what you will wear.
Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?
Consider the ravens; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns,
and yet God feeds them.
Are you not worth more than the birds?

And which of you by worrying can add one hour to your span of life?
Consider the lilies, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin;
yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these.
But if God so clothes the grass in the field,
which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown on the stove,
how much more will he clothe you, people of little faith!

And do not be anxious saying:
"What shall we eat?" or "What shall we drink?" or "What shall we wear?",
for it is the Gentiles who strive for all these things,
and your Father knows that you need them.
But instead seek his kingdom,
and all these things will be given to you as well.
For to everyone who has, more will be given,
but from the one who does not have, even what he has will be taken away.
Truly I tell you, when God's kingdom comes,
and the Son of Man is seated on his glorious throne,
you who have followed me will likewise sit on twelve thrones,
judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
Those who are last will be first,
and the first will be last.

Woe to you, Pharisees;
for you shut the kingdom of God against people;
but you do not enter yourselves; nor do you allow those who would enter to go in.
Woe to you, Pharisees;
for you clean the outside of the cup and of the plate,
but leave the inside full of greed and self-indulgence.
You blind Pharisee!
First clean the inside of the cup,
so that the outside also may become clean.
Woe to you, Pharisees;
for you tithe mint and dill and cumin;
but you have overlooked justice and mercy and faithfulness.
These you ought to have done,
without neglecting the others.
You blind guides, straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel!
Woe to you, Pharisees;
for you love to have the places of honour at banquets,
and the best seats in the synagogues,
and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces.
Woe to you, Pharisees;
for you are like whitewashed tombs which look fine on the outside,
but inside are full of dead people's bones and all kinds of filth.
Woe to you, Pharisees;
for you bind heavy burdens and load them on people's shoulders,
but you yourselves are unwilling to lift a finger to ease them.
Woe to you, Pharisees;
for you build the tombs of the prophets.
And you say: "If we had lived in the days of our ancestors,
we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets".
Thus you testify against yourselves that you are descendants
of those who murdered the prophets.
So then, fill up the measure of your ancestors!

Therefore I send you prophets and sages,
some of whom you will kill,
and some you will persecute from town to town,
so that on you may come the blood of all the prophets shed on earth,
from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah,
who was murdered between the sanctuary and the altar.
Truly I tell you, all this will be charged to this generation.
Many false prophets will arise,
and will lead astray many people.
If they say to you: "Look, he is in the wilderness", do not go out.
If they say: "Look, he is in the inner rooms", do not follow.
For as the lightning comes from the east,
and lights up the sky as far as the west,
so will the Son of Man be in his day.
Where the corpse is,
there the vultures will gather.
As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be in the day of the Son of Man.
For as in those days they were eating and drinking, marrying and being given in marriage,
until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and swept them all away,
that is how it will be on the day when the Son of Man is revealed.
There will be two men in the field;
one will be taken, and the other left.

Two women will be grinding at the mill;
one will be taken, and the other left.
Keep awake, then, for you do not know on what day your master is coming.
Be sure of this: if the householder had known at what time of night the thief was coming,
he would have stayed awake and not let his house be broken into.
So you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.