1. Then Jesus said to His disciples, "Look...it's inevitable that people are going to do things that cause other people to stumble, but it's so regrettable for that one who causes it to happen.
2. In fact, it would actually be better for an individual to have one of those huge grinding-stones that they use in the mills fastened around his neck, and then be sunk in the depth of the sea, than to hurt one of these precious, little ones…or to abuse them in any way…or take advantage of their simple trust…or cause them to grow up and become less than what they should have been.
3. So watch yourselves. Furthermore, if your brother or sister wrongs you in any way, you should have the integrity to go and tell him or her about it, directly, and keep the conversation and the whole matter between the two of you. And if he or she gets what you're saying and has a change of heart and apologizes, you have no choice but to forgive them.
4. I mean even if they offend you seven times in a day, and seven times come back to you saying 'I sincerely apologize,' you must forgive them."
5. When the disciples heard how high His standard was for them in this area, they said to Him, "Lord, increase our faith to be able to deal with people in this way!"
6. He replied, "If you have faith, even as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and be re-planted in the sea,' and the thing will actually obey you. In other words, you can do this.
7. This is how I want you to look at it. Suppose one of you has a servant who comes in from plowing in the field, or tending the sheep. Would you take his coat, set the table, and just say to him, 'Sit down here and eat'?
8. Wouldn't you be more likely to say, 'Prepare my supper first, get yourself ready and wait on me while I eat and drink...and after that you may have your supper.'?
9. Now, does the servant get special thanks for simply doing what's expected of him?
10. Well, it's the same with you. When you've done everything that's expected of you, you should simply say, "We're just doing our job...carrying out what we were told to do.'"
11. Later, on His way to Jerusalem, Jesus was travelling along the border between Samaria and Galilee.
12. And as He was going into a certain village, ten men who were stricken with leprosy came to meet Him, but they stood at a distance.
13. And they all called out together in one, loud voice, "Jesus...Master...have compassion on us!"
14. When He saw and heard them, He said, "All right...go...show yourselves to the priests." And they did as He said, and as they went they were completely cleansed from their disease.
15. But one of them, when he realized that his body was healed and made like new, came right back to find Him, all the while praising God in a loud voice.
16. When He at last saw Jesus, he ran up to Him, threw himself at His feet, and thanked and praised Him, profusely. And, for the record, the man was a Samaritan.
17. Jesus said to him, "Sir, your praise is excellent...but were not all ten men cleansed as you were? Where are the other nine?
18. Seriously...was no one able or thoughtful enough to return and give praise to God except for this one foreigner?"
19. Then he said to the man, "All right...get up and go into your new life as a well man...re-enter society...and know that your own faith has made you well."