John the Baptist
Speaker One, Two
Voice from Heaven.
BIBLE VERSE:Matthew 3
The Baptism of Jesus
Narrator: John the Baptist was the cousin of Jesus, and he was a prophet. John wore clothes made of camel’s hair. He had a leather strap around his waist and ate grasshoppers and wild honey. He preached in the desert, and his message was a warning for all the people.
John the Baptist: Turn back to God! The kingdom of heaven will soon be here!
Narrator: From all Judea and Jerusalem crowds of people went to John. They told how sorry they were for their sins, and he baptized them in the Jordan River.
John the Baptist: You bunch of snakes! Who warned you to run from the coming judgment? Do something to show that you really have given up your sins. An ax is ready to cut the trees down at their roots. Any tree that doesn’t produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into a fire.
Voice One: What should we do?
John: If you have two coats, give one to someone who doesn’t have any. If you have food, share it with someone else.
Tax Collector: Teacher, we are tax collectors. How do we repent? What should we do?
John: Don’t make people pay more than they owe.
Soldier: Teacher, we are soldiers. What about us? What do we have to do?
John: Don’t force people to pay money to make you leave them alone. Be satisfied with your pay.
Speaker One:The Jewish leaders in Jerusalem have sent us to you. They want to know who you are.
John: I am not the Messiah.
Speaker Two: Then who are you? Are you Elijah?
John: I am not.
Speaker Two: Are you the Prophet?
Speaker One: Who are you then? We have to give an answer to the ones who sent us. Tell us who you are!
John: I am only someone shouting in the desert, ‘Get the road ready for the Lord!’
Speaker Two: Why are you baptizing people, if you are not the Messiah or Elijah or the Prophet?
John: Someone more powerful is going to come. And I am not good enough even to stoop down and untie his sandals. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit!
Narrator: Then Jesus came to the Jordan River to be baptized by John. But John kept objecting.
John: I ought to be baptized by you. Why have you come to me?
Jesus: For now this is how it should be, because we must do all that God wants us to do.
Narrator: So Jesus was baptized. And as soon as he came out of the water, the sky opened, and he saw the Spirit of God coming down on him like a dove, and a voice spoke from heaven.
Voice from Heaven: You are my own dear Son, and I am pleased with you.
Narrator: This was the beginning of Jesus’ ministry on earth. If you would like to read more about Jesus and his ministry, check out the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. They are the first books in your Bible’s New Testament.
Bible Source: Contemporary English Version (CEV) Copyright © 1995 by American Bible Society