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John [C the Baptist] was baptizing people in the ·desert [wilderness] and preaching a baptism of ·changed hearts and lives [turning from sin; repentance] for the ·forgiveness [remission] of sins. All the people from Judea and Jerusalem were going out to him. They confessed their sins and were baptized by him in the Jordan River. John wore clothes made from camel’s hair, had a leather belt around his waist [C reminiscent of the prophet Elijah; 2 Kin. 1:8], and ate locusts and wild honey [C signifies living off the land]. This is what John preached to the people: “There is one coming after me who is ·greater [mightier; more powerful] than I; I am not ·good enough [fit; qualified] even to kneel down and untie [L the thong/strap of] his sandals [C a task of a servant or slave]. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”

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