Matthew 3; Mark 1; Luke 3

1 In those days John the Baptist came and preached in the Desert of Judea. 2 He said, "Turn away from your sins! The kingdom of heaven is near." 3 John is the one the prophet Isaiah had spoken about. He had said, "A messenger is calling out in the desert, 'Prepare the way for the Lord. Make straight paths for him.' " (Isaiah 40:3) 4 John's clothes were made out of camel's hair. He had a leather belt around his waist. His food was locusts and wild honey. 5 People went out to him from Jerusalem and all of Judea. They also came from the whole area around the Jordan River. 6 When they admitted they had sinned, John baptized them in the Jordan. 7 John saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing. He said to them, "You are like a nest of poisonous snakes! Who warned you to escape the coming of God's anger? 8 Produce fruit that shows you have turned away from your sins. 9 Don't think you can say to yourselves, 'Abraham is our father.' I tell you, God can raise up children for Abraham even from these stones. 10 The ax is already lying at the roots of the trees. All the trees that don't produce good fruit will be cut down. They will be thrown into the fire. 11 "I baptize you with water, calling you to turn away from your sins. But after me, one will come who is more powerful than I am. And I'm not fit to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. 12 His pitchfork is in his hand to clear the straw from his threshing floor. He will gather his wheat into the storeroom. But he will burn up the husks with fire that can't be put out." 13 Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan River. He wanted to be baptized by John. 14 But John tried to stop him. He told Jesus, "I need to be baptized by you. So why do you come to me?" 15 Jesus replied, "Let it be this way for now. It is right for us to do this. It carries out God's holy plan." Then John agreed. 16 As soon as Jesus was baptized, he came up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened. Jesus saw the Spirit of God coming down on him like a dove. 17 A voice from heaven said, "This is my Son, and I love him. I am very pleased with him."
1 This is the beginning of the good news about Jesus Christ, the Son of God. 2 Long ago Isaiah the prophet wrote, "I will send my messenger ahead of you. He will prepare your way." (Malachi 3:1) 3 "A messenger is calling out in the desert, 'Prepare the way for the Lord. Make straight paths for him.' " (Isaiah 40:3) 4 And so John came. He baptized people in the desert. He also preached that people should be baptized and turn away from their sins. Then God would forgive them. 5 All the people from the countryside of Judea went out to him. All the people from Jerusalem went too. When they admitted they had sinned, John baptized them in the Jordan River. 6 John wore clothes made out of camel's hair. He had a leather belt around his waist. And he ate locusts and wild honey. 7 Here is what John was preaching. "After me, one will come who is more powerful than I am. I'm not good enough to bend down and untie his sandals. 8 I baptize you with water. But he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit." 9 At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee. John baptized him in the Jordan River. 10 Jesus was coming up out of the water. Just then he saw heaven being torn open. He saw the Holy Spirit coming down on him like a dove. 11 A voice spoke to him from heaven. It said, "You are my Son, and I love you. I am very pleased with you." 12 At once the Holy Spirit sent Jesus out into the desert. 13 He was in the desert 40 days. There Satan tempted him. The wild animals didn't harm Jesus. Angels took care of him. 14 After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee. He preached God's good news. 15 "The time has come," he said. "The kingdom of God is near. Turn away from your sins and believe the good news!" 16 One day Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee. There he saw Simon and his brother Andrew. They were throwing a net into the lake. They were fishermen. 17 "Come. Follow me," Jesus said. "I will make you fishers of people." 18 At once they left their nets and followed him. 19 Then Jesus walked a little farther. As he did, he saw James, son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They were in a boat preparing their nets. 20 Right away he called out to them. They left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men. Then they followed Jesus. 21 Jesus and those with him went to Capernaum. When the Sabbath day came, he went into the synagogue. There he began to teach. 22 The people were amazed at his teaching. He taught them like one who had authority. He did not talk like the teachers of the law. 23 Just then a man in their synagogue cried out. He was controlled by an evil spirit. He said, 24 "What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are. You are the Holy One of God!" 25 "Be quiet!" said Jesus firmly. "Come out of him!" 26 The evil spirit shook the man wildly. Then it came out of him with a scream. 27 All the people were amazed. So they asked each other, "What is this? A new teaching! And with so much authority! He even gives orders to evil spirits, and they obey him." 28 News about Jesus spread quickly all over Galilee. 29 Jesus and those with him left the synagogue. Right away they went with James and John to the home of Simon and Andrew. 30 Simon's mother-in-law was lying in bed. She had a fever. They told Jesus about her. 31 So he went to her. He took her hand and helped her up. The fever left her. Then she began to serve them. 32 That evening after sunset, the people brought to Jesus all who were sick. They also brought all who were controlled by demons. 33 All the people in town gathered at the door. 34 Jesus healed many of them. They had all kinds of sicknesses. He also drove out many demons. But he would not let the demons speak, because they knew who he was. 35 It was very early in the morning and still dark. Jesus got up and left the house. He went to a place where he could be alone. There he prayed. 36 Simon and his friends went to look for Jesus. 37 When they found him, they called out, "Everyone is looking for you!" 38 Jesus replied, "Let's go somewhere else. I want to go to the nearby towns. I must preach there also. That is why I have come." 39 So he traveled all around Galilee. He preached in their synagogues. He also drove out demons. 40 A man who had a skin disease came to Jesus. On his knees he begged Jesus. He said, "If you are willing to make me 'clean,' you can do it." 41 Jesus was filled with deep concern. He reached out his hand and touched the man. "I am willing to do it," he said. "Be 'clean'!" 42 Right away the disease left him. He was healed. 43 Jesus sent him away at once. He gave the man a strong warning. 44 "Don't tell this to anyone," he said. "Go and show yourself to the priest. Offer the sacrifices that Moses commanded. It will be a witness to the priest and the people that you are 'clean.' " 45 But the man went out and started talking right away. He spread the news to everyone. So Jesus could no longer enter a town openly. He stayed outside in lonely places. But people still came to him from everywhere.
1 Tiberius Caesar had been ruling for 15 years. Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea. Herod was the ruler of Galilee. His brother Philip was the ruler of Iturea and Traconitis. Lysanias was ruler of Abilene. 2 Annas and Caiaphas were high priests. At that time God's word came to John, son of Zechariah, in the desert. 3 He went into all the countryside around the Jordan River. There he preached that people should be baptized and turn away from their sins. Then God would forgive them. 4 Here is what is written in the scroll of the prophet Isaiah. It says, "A messenger is calling out in the desert, 'Prepare the way for the Lord. Make straight paths for him. 5 Every valley will be filled in. Every mountain and hill will be made level. The crooked roads will become straight. The rough ways will become smooth. 6 And everyone will see God's salvation.' " (Isaiah 40:3-5) 7 John spoke to the crowds coming to be baptized by him. He said, "You are like a nest of poisonous snakes! Who warned you to escape the coming of God's anger? 8 Produce fruit that shows you have turned away from your sins. And don't start saying to yourselves, 'Abraham is our father.' I tell you, God can raise up children for Abraham even from these stones. 9 The ax is already lying at the roots of the trees. All the trees that don't produce good fruit will be cut down. They will be thrown into the fire." 10 "Then what should we do?" the crowd asked. 11 John answered, "If you have extra clothes, you should share with those who have none. And if you have extra food, you should do the same." 12 Tax collectors also came to be baptized. "Teacher," they asked, "what should we do?" 13 "Don't collect any more than you are required to," John told them. 14 Then some soldiers asked him, "And what should we do?" John replied, "Don't force people to give you money. Don't bring false charges against people. Be happy with your pay." 15 The people were waiting. They were expecting something. They were all wondering in their hearts if John might be the Christ. 16 John answered them all, "I baptize you with water. But One who is more powerful than I am will come. I'm not good enough to untie the straps of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. 17 His pitchfork is in his hand to toss the straw away from his threshing floor. He will gather the wheat into his storeroom. But he will burn up the husks with fire that can't be put out." 18 John said many other things to warn the people. He also preached the good news to them. 19 But John found fault with Herod, the ruler of Galilee, because of Herodias. She was the wife of Herod's brother. John also spoke strongly to Herod about all the other evil things he had done. 20 So Herod locked him up in prison. He added this sin to all his others. 21 When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as he was praying, heaven was opened. 22 The Holy Spirit came down on him in the form of a dove. A voice came from heaven. It said, "You are my Son, and I love you. I am very pleased with you." 23 Jesus was about 30 years old when he began his special work for God and others. It was thought that he was the son of Joseph. Joseph was the son of Heli. 24 Heli was the son of Matthat. Matthat was the son of Levi. Levi was the son of Melki. Melki was the son of Jannai. Jannai was the son of Joseph. 25 Joseph was the son of Mattathias. Mattathias was the son of Amos. Amos was the son of Nahum. Nahum was the son of Esli. Esli was the son of Naggai. 26 Naggai was the son of Maath. Maath was the son of Mattathias. Mattathias was the son of Semein. Semein was the son of Josech. Josech was the son of Joda. 27 Joda was the son of Joanan. Joanan was the son of Rhesa. Rhesa was the son of Zerubbabel. Zerubbabel was the son of Shealtiel. Shealtiel was the son of Neri. 28 Neri was the son of Melki. Melki was the son of Addi. Addi was the son of Cosam. Cosam was the son of Elmadam. Elmadam was the son of Er. 29 Er was the son of Joshua. Joshua was the son of Eliezer. Eliezer was the son of Jorim. Jorim was the son of Matthat. Matthat was the son of Levi. 30 Levi was the son of Simeon. Simeon was the son of Judah. Judah was the son of Joseph. Joseph was the son of Jonam. Jonam was the son of Eliakim. 31 Eliakim was the son of Melea. Melea was the son of Menna. Menna was the son of Mattatha. Mattatha was the son of Nathan. Nathan was the son of David. 32 David was the son of Jesse. Jesse was the son of Obed. Obed was the son of Boaz. Boaz was the son of Salmon. Salmon was the son of Nahshon. 33 Nahshon was the son of Amminadab. Amminadab was the son of Ram. Ram was the son of Hezron. Hezron was the son of Perez. Perez was the son of Judah. 34 Judah was the son of Jacob. Jacob was the son of Isaac. Isaac was the son of Abraham. Abraham was the son of Terah. Terah was the son of Nahor. 35 Nahor was the son of Serug. Serug was the son of Reu. Reu was the son of Peleg. Peleg was the son of Eber. Eber was the son of Shelah. 36 Shelah was the son of Cainan. Cainan was the son of Arphaxad. Arphaxad was the son of Shem. Shem was the son of Noah. Noah was the son of Lamech. 37 Lamech was the son of Methuselah. Methuselah was the son of Enoch. Enoch was the son of Jared. Jared was the son of Mahalalel. Mahalalel was the son of Kenan. 38 Kenan was the son of Enosh. Enosh was the son of Seth. Seth was the son of Adam. Adam was the son of God.
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