On one occasion, as Jesus was going, on a Sabbath into the house of one of the leading Pharisees to dine, they were watching him closely. There he saw before him a man who was suffering from dropsy. ‘Is it allowable,’ said Jesus, addressing the students of the Law and the Pharisees, ‘to work a cure on the Sabbath, or is it not?’ They remained silent. Jesus took hold of the man and cured him, and sent him away. And he said to them, ‘Which of you, finding that your son or your ox has fallen into a well, will not immediately pull them out on the Sabbath day?’ And they could not make any answer to that.
Observing that the guests were choosing the best places for themselves, Jesus told them this parable – ‘When you are invited by anyone to a wedding banquet, do not seat yourself in the best place. Someone of higher rank might have been invited by your host; and the host who invited you both will come and say to you “Make room for this person,” and then you will begin in confusion to take the lowest place. 10 No, when you are invited, go and take the lowest place, so that, when the host who has invited you comes, he may say to you “Friend, come higher up”; and then you will be honoured in the eyes of all your fellow guests. 11 For everyone who exalts themselves will be humbled, and everyone who humbles themselves will be exalted.’
12 Then Jesus went on to say to the man who had invited him, ‘When you give a breakfast or a dinner, do not ask your friends, or your brothers or sisters, or your relatives, or rich neighbours, because they might invite you in return, and so you should be repaid. 13 No, when you entertain, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; 14 and then you will be happy indeed, since they cannot reward you; for you will be rewarded at the resurrection of the good.’
15 One of the guests heard what he said and exclaimed, ‘Happy will be the person who will eat bread in the kingdom of God!’ 16 But Jesus said to him, ‘A man was once giving a great dinner. He invited many people, 17 and sent his servant, when it was time for the dinner, to say to those who had been invited “Come, for everything is now ready.” 18 They all with one accord began to ask to be excused. The first said to the servant “I have bought a field and am obliged to go and look at it. I must ask you to consider me excused.” 19 The next said “I have bought five pairs of bullocks, and I am on my way to try them. I must ask you to consider me excused”; 20 while the next said “I am just married, and for that reason I am unable to come.” 21 On his return the servant told his master all these answers. Then in anger the owner of the house said to his servant “Go out at once into the streets and alleys of the town, and bring in here the poor, and the crippled, and the blind, and the lame.” 22 Presently the servant said “Sir, your order has been carried out, and still there is room.” 23 “Go out,” the master said, “into the roads and hedgerows, and make people come in, so that my house may be filled; 24 for I tell you all that not one of those people who were invited will taste my dinner.”’
25 One day, when great crowds of people were walking with Jesus, he turned and said to them, 26 ‘If any one comes to me and does not hate their father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brothers, and sisters, yes and even their life, he can be no disciple of mine. 27 Whoever does not carry their own cross, and walk in my steps, can be no disciple of mine. 28 Why, which of you, when you want to build a tower, does not first sit down and reckon the cost, to see if you have enough to complete it? – 29 Otherwise, if you have laid the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will laugh at you, 30 and say “Here is a person who began to build and was not able to finish!” 31 Or what king, when he is setting out to fight another king, does not first sit down and consider if with ten thousand men he is able to meet one who is coming against him with twenty thousand? 32 And if he cannot, then, while the other is still at a distance, he sends envoys and asks for terms of peace. 33 And so with everyone of you who does not bid farewell to all you have – you cannot be a disciple of mine. 34 Yes, salt is good; but, if the salt itself should lose its strength, what will be used to season it? 35 It is not fit either for the land or for the manure heap. People throw it away. Let those who have ears to hear with hear!’