1Comfort, comfort my people, says your God.2Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that her hard service has been completed, that her sin has been paid for, that she has received from the LORD’s hand double for all her sins.3A voice of one calling: “In the wilderness prepare the way for the LORD ; make straight in the desert a highway for our God.4Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain.5And the glory of the LORD will be revealed, and all people will see it together. For the mouth of the LORD has spoken.”6A voice says, “Cry out.” And I said, “What shall I cry?” “All people are like grass, and all their faithfulness is like the flowers of the field.7The grass withers and the flowers fall, because the breath of the LORD blows on them. Surely the people are grass.8The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.”9You who bring good news to Zion, go up on a high mountain. You who bring good news to Jerusalem,lift up your voice with a shout, lift it up, do not be afraid; say to the towns of Judah, “Here is your God!”10See, the Sovereign LORD comes with power, and he rules with a mighty arm. See, his reward is with him, and his recompense accompanies him.11He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.
1The beginning of the good news about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God,2as it is written in Isaiah the prophet: “I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way” —3“a voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.’ ”4And so John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.5The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.6John wore clothing made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey.7And this was his message: “After me comes the one more powerful than I, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie.8I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”