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Matthew 3 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

The Messiah’s Herald

In those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the Wilderness of Judea and saying, “Repent, because the kingdom of heaven has come near!” For he is the one spoken of through the prophet Isaiah, who said:

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

John himself had a camel-hair garment with a leather belt around his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. Then people from Jerusalem, all Judea, and all the vicinity of the Jordan were flocking to him, and they were baptized by him in the Jordan River as they confessed their sins.

When he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to the place of his baptism,[b] he said to them, “Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Therefore produce fruit consistent with[c] repentance. And don’t presume to say 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! 10 Even now the ax is ready to strike the root of the trees! Therefore, every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.

11 “I baptize you with[d] water for repentance,[e] but the One who is coming after me is more powerful than I. I am not worthy to remove[f] His sandals. He Himself will baptize you with[g] the Holy Spirit and fire. 12 His winnowing shovel[h] is in His hand, and He will clear His threshing floor and gather His wheat into the barn. But the chaff He will burn up with fire that never goes out.”

The Baptism of Jesus

13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan, to be baptized by him. 14 But John tried to stop Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by You, and yet You come to me?”

15 Jesus answered him, “Allow it for now, because this is the way for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he allowed Him to be baptized.

16 After Jesus was baptized, He went up immediately from the water. The heavens suddenly opened for Him,[i] and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming down on Him. 17 And there came a voice from heaven:

This is My beloved Son.
I take delight in Him!

Footnotes:

  1. Matthew 3:3 Is 40:3
  2. Matthew 3:7 Lit to his baptism
  3. Matthew 3:8 Lit fruit worthy of
  4. Matthew 3:11 Or in
  5. Matthew 3:11 Baptism was the means by which repentance was expressed publicly.
  6. Matthew 3:11 Or to carry
  7. Matthew 3:11 Or in
  8. Matthew 3:12 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
  9. Matthew 3:16 Other mss omit for Him

Matthew 3 New International Version (NIV)

John the Baptist Prepares the Way

In those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the wilderness of Judea and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” This is he who was spoken of through the prophet Isaiah:

“A voice of one calling in the wilderness,
‘Prepare the way for the Lord,
    make straight paths for him.’”[a]

John’s clothes were made of camel’s hair, and he had a leather belt around his waist. His food was locusts and wild honey. People went out to him from Jerusalem and all Judea and the whole region of the Jordan. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.

But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing, he said to them: “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not think you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. 10 The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.

11 “I baptize you with[b] water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with[c] the Holy Spirit and fire. 12 His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor, gathering his wheat into the barn and burning up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”

The Baptism of Jesus

13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. 14 But John tried to deter him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?”

15 Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” Then John consented.

16 As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”

Footnotes:

  1. Matthew 3:3 Isaiah 40:3
  2. Matthew 3:11 Or in
  3. Matthew 3:11 Or in
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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