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The Preaching of John the Baptist

This is the good news about Jesus Christ, the Son of God.[a] It began just as God had said in the book written by Isaiah the prophet,

“I am sending my messenger
to get the way ready
    for you.
In the desert
    someone is shouting,
‘Get the road ready
    for the Lord!
Make a straight path
    for him.’”

So John the Baptist showed up in the desert and told everyone, “Turn back to God and be baptized! Then your sins will be forgiven.”

From all Judea and Jerusalem crowds of people went to John. They told how sorry they were for their sins, and he baptized them in the Jordan River.

John wore clothes made of camel’s hair. He had a leather strap around his waist and ate grasshoppers and wild honey.

John also told the people, “Someone more powerful is going to come. And I am not good enough even to stoop down and untie his sandals.[b] I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit!”

The Baptism of Jesus

About that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee, and John baptized him in the Jordan River. 10 As soon as Jesus came out of the water, he saw the sky open and the Holy Spirit coming down to him like a dove. 11 A voice from heaven said, “You are my own dear Son, and I am pleased with you.”

Jesus and Satan

12 Right away God’s Spirit made Jesus go into the desert. 13 He stayed there for forty days while Satan tested him. Jesus was with the wild animals, but angels took care of him.

Jesus Begins His Work

14 After John was arrested, Jesus went to Galilee and told the good news that comes from God.[c] 15 He said, “The time has come! God’s kingdom will soon be here.[d] Turn back to God and believe the good news!”

Jesus Chooses Four Fishermen

16 As Jesus was walking along the shore of Lake Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew. They were fishermen and were casting their nets into the lake. 17 Jesus said to them, “Come with me! I will teach you how to bring in people instead of fish.” 18 Right then the two brothers dropped their nets and went with him.

19 Jesus walked on and soon saw James and John, the sons of Zebedee. They were in a boat, mending their nets. 20 At once Jesus asked them to come with him. They left their father in the boat with the hired workers and went with him.

A Man with an Evil Spirit

21 Jesus and his disciples went to the town of Capernaum. Then on the next Sabbath he went into the Jewish meeting place and started teaching. 22 Everyone was amazed at his teaching. He taught with authority, and not like the teachers of the Law of Moses. 23 Suddenly a man with an evil spirit[e] in him entered the meeting place and yelled, 24 “Jesus from Nazareth, what do you want with us? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are! You are God’s Holy One.”

25 Jesus told the evil spirit, “Be quiet and come out of the man!” 26 The spirit shook him. Then it gave a loud shout and left.

27 Everyone was completely surprised and kept saying to each other, “What is this? It must be some new kind of powerful teaching! Even the evil spirits obey him.” 28 News about Jesus quickly spread all over Galilee.

Jesus Heals Many People

29 As soon as Jesus left the meeting place with James and John, they went home with Simon and Andrew. 30 When they got there, Jesus was told that Simon’s mother-in-law was sick in bed with fever. 31 Jesus went to her. He took hold of her hand and helped her up. The fever left her, and she served them a meal.

32 That evening after sunset,[f] all who were sick or had demons in them were brought to Jesus. 33 In fact, the whole town gathered around the door of the house. 34 Jesus healed all kinds of terrible diseases and forced out a lot of demons. But the demons knew who he was, and he did not let them speak.

35 Very early the next morning, Jesus got up and went to a place where he could be alone and pray. 36 Simon and the others started looking for him. 37 And when they found him, they said, “Everyone is looking for you!”

38 Jesus replied, “We must go to the nearby towns, so that I can tell the good news to those people. This is why I have come.” 39 Then Jesus went to Jewish meeting places everywhere in Galilee, where he preached and forced out demons.

Jesus Heals a Man

40 A man with leprosy[g] came to Jesus and knelt down.[h] He begged, “You have the power to make me well, if only you wanted to.”

41 Jesus felt sorry for[i] the man. So he put his hand on him and said, “I want to! Now you are well.” 42 At once the man’s leprosy disappeared, and he was well.

43 After Jesus strictly warned the man, he sent him on his way. 44 He said, “Don’t tell anyone about this. Just go and show the priest that you are well. Then take a gift to the temple as Moses commanded, and everyone will know that you have been healed.”[j]

45 The man talked about it so much and told so many people, that Jesus could no longer go openly into a town. He had to stay away from the towns, but people still came to him from everywhere.

Footnotes

  1. 1.1 the Son of God: These words are not in some manuscripts.
  2. 1.7 untie his sandals: This was the duty of a slave.
  3. 1.14 that comes from God: Or “that is about God.”
  4. 1.15 will soon be here: Or “is already here.”
  5. 1.23 evil spirit: A Jewish person who had an evil spirit was considered “unclean” and was not allowed to eat or worship with other Jewish people.
  6. 1.32 after sunset: The Sabbath was over, and a new day began at sunset.
  7. 1.40 leprosy: In biblical times the word “leprosy” was used for many different kinds of skin diseases.
  8. 1.40 and knelt down: These words are not in some manuscripts.
  9. 1.41 felt sorry for: Some manuscripts have “was angry with.”
  10. 1.44 everyone will know that you have been healed: People with leprosy had to be examined by a priest and told that they were well (that is, “clean”) before they could once again live a normal life in the Jewish community. The gift that Moses commanded was the sacrifice of some lambs together with flour mixed with olive oil.