Now there arose a contention among the disciples as to which of them might be the greatest. And in that hour, while Jesus was in the house, He asked them, "What were ye discussing in the way?" But they were silent; because they had been disputing with one another in the way, who was the greatest.
And sitting down, He called the twelve. And they came to Him, saying, "Who then is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?" But Jesus, perceiving the reasoning of their heart, called a little child to Him, and took it and set it by Him in their midst, and said to them, "If any one wishes to be first, he shall be the last of all, and servant of all."
And taking the child in His arms, He said to them, "Verily I say to you, except ye be converted and become as little children, ye shall by no means enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever, therefore, shall humble himself as this little child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whosoever shall receive this little child or one of such little children in My name, receiveth Me; and whosoever receiveth Me, receiveth not Me, but Him who sent Me: for he that is least among you all , the same is great.
"But whosoever shall cause one of these little ones that believe in Me to stumble, it were better for him that a great millstone should be hanged about his neck and he be sunk in the depth of the sea. Woe to the world because of the stumbling-blocks! For it is necessary for the stumbling-blocks to come, nevertheless woe to the man through whom the stumbling-block cometh. But if thy hand or thy foot cause thee to stumble, cut it off and cast it from thee. It is good for thee to enter into life maimed or lame, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into hell, into the everlasting, unquenchable fire.
"And if thy eye cause thee to stumble, pluck it out and cast it from thee. It is good for thee to enter into life, into the kingdom of God, with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into the hell of fire, where their worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched. For every one shall be salted with fire.
"Salt is good; but if the salt becometh saltless, with what will ye season it? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with one another. See that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say to you, that their angels in heaven do always see the face of My Father who is in heaven.
"What think ye? If any man hath a hundred sheep, and one of them goeth astray, doth he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go and seek that which is gone astray? And if it be that he find it, verily I say to you, that he rejoiceth over it more than over the ninety-nine that have not gone astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father Who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish."
Then John answered and said to Him, "Master, we saw one casting out demons in Thy name and we forbade him, because he followeth not with us." But Jesus said to him, "Forbid him not; for there is no one who shall work a miracle in My name and be able hastily to speak evil of Me; for he that is not against us is for us. For whosoever shall give you to drink a cup of water in My name, because ye are Christ's, verily I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward."