Reading: Matthew 3:1-12 HCLD 27 Q&A 72
Text: Matthew 3:11
3 Now in those days John the Baptist *[a]came, [b]preaching in the wilderness of Judea, saying, 2 “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven [c]is at hand.” 3 For this is the one referred to [d]by Isaiah the prophet when he said,
“The voice of one [e]crying in the wilderness,
‘Make ready the way of the Lord,
Make His paths straight!’”
4 Now John himself had [f]a garment of camel’s hair and a leather belt around his waist; and his food was locusts and wild honey. 5 Then Jerusalem was going out to him, and all Judea and all the district around the Jordan; 6 and they were being baptized by him in the Jordan River, as they confessed their sins.
7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he said to them, “You brood of vipers, who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8 Therefore bear fruit in keeping with repentance; 9 and do not suppose that you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham for our father’; for I say to you that from these stones God is able to raise up children to Abraham. 10 The axe is already laid at the root of the trees; therefore every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
11 “As for me, I baptize you [g]with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you [h]with the Holy Spirit and fire. 12 His winnowing fork is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clear His threshing floor; and He will gather His wheat into the barn, but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”