As ·John’s followers [L they] were leaving, Jesus began talking to the ·people [crowds] about John. Jesus said, “What did you go out into the ·desert [wilderness] to see? A reed ·blown by [shaken by; swaying in] the wind [C a metaphor for something weak or wavering]?
As John’s disciples were going away Jesus began talking to the crowd about John: “What did you go out into the desert to look at? A reed waving in the breeze? No? Then what was it you went out to see?—a man dressed in fine clothes? But the men who wear fine clothes live in the courts of kings! But what did you really go to see—a prophet? Yes, I tell you, a prophet and far more than a prophet! This is the man of whom the scripture says—‘Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way before you’.
When John’s disciples left to report, Jesus started talking to the crowd about John. “What did you expect when you went out to see him in the wild? A weekend camper? Hardly. What then? A sheik in silk pajamas? Not in the wilderness, not by a long shot. What then? A prophet? That’s right, a prophet! Probably the best prophet you’ll ever hear. He is the prophet that Malachi announced when he wrote, ‘I’m sending my prophet ahead of you, to make the road smooth for you.’
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