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Mark 1:3-8 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

A voice of one crying out in the wilderness:
Prepare the way for the Lord;
make His paths straight![a]

John came baptizing[b] in the wilderness and preaching a baptism of repentance[c] for the forgiveness of sins. The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem were flocking to him, and they were baptized by him in the Jordan River as they confessed their sins. John wore a camel-hair garment with a leather belt around his waist and ate locusts and wild honey. He was preaching: “Someone more powerful than I will come after me. I am not worthy to stoop down and untie the strap of His sandals. I have baptized you with[d] water, but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”


  1. Mark 1:3 Is 40:3; Mal 3:1
  2. Mark 1:4 Or John the Baptist came, or John the Baptizer came
  3. Mark 1:4 Or a baptism based on repentance
  4. Mark 1:8 Or in

Luke 3:2-17 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

during the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, God’s word came to John the son of Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the vicinity of the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance[a] for the forgiveness of sins, as it is written in the book of the words of the prophet Isaiah:

A voice of one crying out in the wilderness:
Prepare the way for the Lord;
make His paths straight!
Every valley will be filled,
and every mountain and hill will be made low;[b]
the crooked will become straight,
the rough ways smooth,
and everyone[c] will see the salvation of God.[d]

He then said to the crowds who came out to be baptized by him, “Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Therefore produce fruit consistent with repentance. And don’t start saying to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father,’ for I tell you that God is able to raise up children for Abraham from these stones! Even now the ax is ready to strike[e] the root of the trees! Therefore, every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.”

10 “What then should we do?” the crowds were asking him.

11 He replied to them, “The one who has two shirts[f] must share with someone who has none, and the one who has food must do the same.”

12 Tax collectors also came to be baptized, and they asked him, “Teacher, what should we do?”

13 He told them, “Don’t collect any more than what you have been authorized.”

14 Some soldiers also questioned him: “What should we do?”

He said to them, “Don’t take money from anyone by force or false accusation; be satisfied with your wages.”

15 Now the people were waiting expectantly, and all of them were debating in their minds[g] whether John might be the Messiah. 16 John answered them all, “I baptize you with[h] water, but One is coming who is more powerful than I. I am not worthy to untie the strap of His sandals. He will baptize you with[i] the Holy Spirit and fire. 17 His winnowing shovel[j] is in His hand to clear His threshing floor and gather the wheat into His barn, but the chaff He will burn up with a fire that never goes out.”


  1. Luke 3:3 Or baptism based on repentance
  2. Luke 3:5 Lit be humbled
  3. Luke 3:6 Lit all flesh
  4. Luke 3:6 Is 40:3-5
  5. Luke 3:9 Lit the ax lies at
  6. Luke 3:11 Lit tunics
  7. Luke 3:15 Or hearts
  8. Luke 3:16 Or in
  9. Luke 3:16 Or in
  10. Luke 3:17 A wooden farm implement used to toss threshed grain into the wind so the lighter chaff would blow away and separate from the heavier grain

John 1:6-8 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

There was a man named John
who was sent from God.
He came as a witness
to testify about the light,
so that all might believe through him.[a]
He was not the light,
but he came to testify about the light.


  1. John 1:7 Or through it (the light)

John 1:19-28 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

John the Baptist’s Testimony

19 This is John’s testimony when the Jews from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him, “Who are you?”

20 He did not refuse to answer, but he declared: “I am not the Messiah.”

21 “What then?” they asked him. “Are you Elijah?”

“I am not,” he said.

“Are you the Prophet?”[a]

“No,” he answered.

22 “Who are you, then?” they asked. “We need to give an answer to those who sent us. What can you tell us about yourself?”

23 He said, “I am a voice of one crying out in the wilderness: Make straight the way of the Lord[b]—just as Isaiah the prophet said.”

24 Now they had been sent from the Pharisees. 25 So they asked him, “Why then do you baptize if you aren’t the Messiah, or Elijah, or the Prophet?”

26 “I baptize with[c] water,” John answered them. “Someone stands among you, but you don’t know Him. 27 He is the One coming after me,[d] whose sandal strap I’m not worthy to untie.”

28 All this happened in Bethany[e] across the Jordan,[f] where John was baptizing.


  1. John 1:21 Probably the Prophet in Dt 18:15
  2. John 1:23 Is 40:3
  3. John 1:26 Or in
  4. John 1:27 Other mss add who came before me
  5. John 1:28 Other mss read in Bethabara
  6. John 1:28 Another Bethany, near Jerusalem, was the home of Lazarus, Martha, and Mary; Jn 11:1.

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