The Gift New Testament

A free online Bible study resource


3:1In the fifteenth year of the governorship of Tiberias Caesar, Pontius Pilate was the governor of Judea, Herod was ruler over one-fourth of Galilee, his brother Philip was ruler over one-fourth of the region of Iturea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias was ruler over one-fourth of Abilene.13:2It was then, during the ruling priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, that a declaration from God came upon John, the son of Zacharias, while he was in the desert.

3:3So he went into the whole area around the Jordan River, proclaiming immersion based upon a complete change of mind that would lead to being acquitted of faults.3:4As it has been written in the book of the sayings of the prophet Isaiah,

“There is someone calling out in the desert: ‘Prepare the way of the Master and straighten its paths!3:5Its ravines will be filled in, every hill will be lowered, every crooked thing will be straightened, and every rocky place will be smoothed.3:6Then everyone will clearly see the deliverance of God.’”

3:7But to the crowd coming to him to be immersed he said, “You hatchlings of snakes! Who showed you how to run away from the fury to come?3:8You must produce results to match your change of mind, rather than simply saying to yourselves, ‘We are the offspring of Abraham’. For I tell you that God is able to raise up children for Abraham from these stones!3:9The ax is already aimed at the root of the trees, so every tree that does not produce acceptable fruit is being cut down and thrown into the fire.”

3:10So the crowd asked him, “What are we to do then?”

3:11“The one with two tunics should share with someone who has none,” he replied. “Do the same with food.”

3:12Then some tax contractors2 came to be immersed, and they asked him, “Teacher, what are we to do?”

3:13“Do not take one bit more than you’re supposed to,” he answered.

3:14Next some soldiers asked what they should do, and he told them, “Stop intimidating people and engaging in extortion, and be content with your pay.”

3:15Now all the people were in anticipation, speculating among themselves whether John was actually the Anointed.33:16But he responded to them all, “I do immerse you in water, but one stronger than I is coming, whose shoelaces I am not worthy to untie! He will immerse you in the Holy Spirit and fire.3:17He has a broom in his hand, and he is poised to sweep the threshing floor clean! He will gather the grain into his storage bins, but he will burn the chaff in fire that will never be extinguished.”

3:18Then with many other words he encouraged the people with this good news.3:19But he confronted Herod, ruler over one-fourth the country, concerning the wife of his brother Philip,3:20so Herod added to all his other evils by locking John in prison.

3:21When all the people were being immersed, Jesus was immersed as well. While he was praying, the sky opened up3:22the Holy Spirit descended upon him in the form of a dove, and there was a voice from heaven: “You are my dear son, and I am very pleased with you.”

3:23Jesus’ activities began when he was about thirty years old. He was presumed to be the son of Joseph:

of Heli,3:24of Matthat, of Levi, of Melchi, of Jannai, of Joseph,3:25of Mattathias, of Amos, of Nahum, of Esli, of Naggai,3:26of Maath, of Mattathias, of Semein, of Josech, of Joda,3:27of Joanan, of Rhesa, of Zorobabel, of Salathiel, of Neri,3:28of Melchi, of Addi, of Cosam, of Elmadam, of Er,

3:29of Joshua, of Eliezer, of Jorim, of Matthat, of Levi,3:30of Simon, of Judah, of Joseph, of Jonam, of Eliakim,3:31of Melea, of Menna, of Mattatha, of Nathan, of David,3:32of Jesse, of Obed, of Boaz, of Sala, of Nahshon,3:33of Aminadab, of Admin, of Arni, of Hezron, of Phares, of Judah,

3:34of Jacob, of Isaac, of Abraham, of Terah, of Nahor,3:35of Serug, of Reu, of Peleg, of Eber, of Sala,3:36of Cainan, of Arphaxad, of Shem, of Noah, of Lamech,3:37of Methusaleh, of Enoch, of Jared, of Mahalalel, of Cainan,3:38of Enosh, of Seth, of Adam, of God.

  1. 1A Roman tetrarch was one of four rulers over a country.
  2. 2Tax contractors were individuals making a profit by collecting taxes on behalf of the Roman government.
  3. 3The fact that the people thought maybe John was the Anointed (Messiah) contradicts the popular claim that Israel was not expecting a savior to physically come for them.