John the Baptist Prepares the Way

Matthew 3

1 h In those days i John the Baptist came preaching in j the wilderness of Judea, 2 k "Repent, for l the kingdom of heaven is at hand."

3 For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah when he said,
m "The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
n 'Prepare 1 the way of the Lord;
make his paths straight.'"

4 Now John wore o a garment of camel's hair and a leather belt around his waist, and his food was p locusts and q wild honey. 5 Then Jerusalem and all Judea and all the region about the Jordan were going out to him, 6 and they were baptized by him in the river Jordan, r confessing their sins.

7 But when he saw many of s the Pharisees and t Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, u "You brood of v vipers! Who warned you to flee from w the wrath to come? 8 Bear fruit x in keeping with repentance. 9 And do not presume to say to yourselves, y 'We have Abraham as our father,' for I tell you, God is able from z these stones to raise up children for Abraham. 10 Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees. a Every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

11 b "I baptize you with water c for repentance, but d he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you e with the Holy Spirit and f fire. 12 His g winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and h gather his wheat into the barn, i but the chaff he will burn with j unquenchable fire."

  1. Cross References
    Matthew 3:1 - 12
    In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea.
    Mark 1:2 - 8
    As it is written in Isaiah the prophet, "Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way.
    Luke 3:2 - 17
    During the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John the son of Zechariah in the wilderness.
  2. Cross References
    John 1:6 - 7
    There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.
  3. Cross References
    Joshua 15:61
    In the wilderness, Beth-arabah, Middin, Secacah.
    Judges 1:16
    And the descendants of the Kenite, Moses' father-in-law, went up with the people of Judah from the city of palms into the wilderness of Judah, which lies in the Negeb near Arad, and they went and settled with the people.
  4. Cross References
    Matthew 3:1 - 12
    In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea.
    Mark 1:2 - 8
    As it is written in Isaiah the prophet, "Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way.
    Luke 3:1 - 17
    In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene.
  5. Cross References
    Matthew 4:17
    From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
    Mark 1:15
    And saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.
  6. Cross References
    Matthew 10:7
    And proclaim as you go, saying, 'The kingdom of heaven is at hand.
    Daniel 2:44
    And in the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed, nor shall the kingdom be left to another people. It shall break in pieces all these kingdoms and bring them to an end, and it shall stand forever.
    Matthew 6:10
    Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
  7. Cross References
    John 1:23
    He said, "I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, 'Make straight the way of the Lord,' as the prophet Isaiah said.
    Isaiah 40:3
    A voice cries: "In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord ; make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
  8. Cross References
    Luke 1:76
    And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways.
  9. Cross References
    Isaiah 40:3
    A voice cries: "In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord ; make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
  10. Cross References
    2 Kings 1:8
    They answered him, "He wore a garment of hair, with a belt of leather about his waist." And he said, "It is Elijah the Tishbite.
    Zechariah 13:4
    On that day every prophet will be ashamed of his vision when he prophesies. He will not put on a hairy cloak in order to deceive.
    Hebrews 11:37
    They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated -
  11. Cross References
    Leviticus 11:22
    Of them you may eat: the locust of any kind, the bald locust of any kind, the cricket of any kind, and the grasshopper of any kind.
  12. Cross References
    1 Samuel 14:26
    And when the people entered the forest, behold, the honey was dropping, but no one put his hand to his mouth, for the people feared the oath.
  13. Cross References
    Acts 19:18
    Also many of those who were now believers came, confessing and divulging their practices.
  14. Cross References
    Matthew 23:13
    But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut the kingdom of heaven in people's faces. For you neither enter yourselves nor allow those who would enter to go in.
    Matthew 23:15
    Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel across sea and land to make a single proselyte, and when he becomes a proselyte, you make him twice as much a child of hell as yourselves.
  15. Cross References
    Matthew 22:23
    The same day Sadducees came to him, who say that there is no resurrection, and they asked him a question.
  16. Cross References
    Matthew 12:34
    You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.
    Matthew 23:33
    You serpents, you brood of vipers, how are you to escape being sentenced to hell?
  17. Cross References
    Psalms 140:3
    They make their tongue sharp as a serpent's, and under their lips is the venom of asps. Selah
  18. Cross References
    Romans 5:9
    Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.
    Ephesians 5:6
    Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.
    Colossians 3:6
    On account of these the wrath of God is coming.
    1 Thessalonians 1:10
    And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.
  19. Cross References
    Acts 26:20
    But declared first to those in Damascus, then in Jerusalem and throughout all the region of Judea, and also to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, performing deeds in keeping with their repentance.
  20. Cross References
    John 8:39
    They answered him, "Abraham is our father." Jesus said to them, "If you were Abraham's children, you would be doing the works Abraham did.
  21. Cross References
    Matthew 4:3
    And the tempter came and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.
  22. Cross References
    Matthew 7:19
    Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
    Luke 13:7
    And he said to the vinedresser, 'Look, for three years now I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and I find none. Cut it down. Why should it use up the ground?
    Luke 13:9
    Then if it should bear fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.'
    John 15:2
    Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit.
    John 15:6
    If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned.
  23. Cross References
    John 1:26
    John answered them, "I baptize with water, but among you stands one you do not know.
    Acts 1:5
    For John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.
  24. Cross References
    Acts 13:24
    Before his coming, John had proclaimed a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel.
    Acts 19:4
    And Paul said, "John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, Jesus.
  25. Cross References
    John 1:15
    ( John bore witness about him, and cried out, "This was he of whom I said, 'He who comes after me ranks before me, because he was before me.'")
    John 1:27
    Even he who comes after me, the strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.
    John 3:30 - 31
    He must increase, but I must decrease.
    Acts 13:25
    And as John was finishing his course, he said, 'What do you suppose that I am? I am not he. No, but behold, after me one is coming, the sandals of whose feet I am not worthy to untie.
  26. Cross References
    John 1:33
    I myself did not know him, but he who sent me to baptize with water said to me, 'He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.
    Acts 11:16
    And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he said, 'John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.
  27. Cross References
    Isaiah 4:4
    When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion and cleansed the bloodstains of Jerusalem from its midst by a spirit of judgment and by a spirit of burning.
    Malachi 3:2 - 3
    But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears? For he is like a refiner's fire and like fullers' soap.
    Acts 2:3
    And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them.
  28. Cross References
    Isaiah 30:24
    And the oxen and the donkeys that work the ground will eat seasoned fodder, which has been winnowed with shovel and fork.
  29. Cross References
    Matthew 13:30
    Let both grow together until the harvest, and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.'
  30. Cross References
    Malachi 4:1
    For behold, the day is coming, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble. The day that is coming shall set them ablaze, says the Lord of hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch.
  31. Cross References
    Mark 9:43
    And if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than with two hands to go to hell, to the unquenchable fire.
    Mark 9:48
    'where their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.'
English Standard Version (ESV) The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.
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