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God sent a messenger named John to tell people to get ready because the Messiah was coming. John was a distant cousin of Jesus, born just six months before Him. He was a rugged man who lived in the wilderness, ate locusts and wild honey, and wore clothes made out of camel hair.

John boldly challenged the Jews, “Don’t just say you love God—prove it with your life. Turn from your sins and turn to God!”

He became known as John the Baptizer as he dunked those who had confessed their sins in the Jordan River. Baptism was a symbol of being washed clean from your sins and choosing a new way of living.

When Jewish leaders asked John if he was the Messiah, he responded, “No! But someone is coming soon who is far greater than me. I’m not worthy to untie His sandals or even to be His slave. You see, I baptize with water, but He will baptize with God’s Spirit!”

Soon after that Jesus came to be baptized. When John saw Him, he said, “I’m the one who needs to be baptized by you.”

Jesus insisted, so John baptized Him in front of the crowds. When Jesus came out of the water, God’s Spirit came down from the sky; it looked like a dove floating down and resting on Him.

Then a voice from heaven said, “You are my son whom I love. You bring me great joy!”


After leaving the Jordan River, Jesus was led by God’s Spirit to go into the wilderness. There Satan tempted Him for forty days and forty nights. During that entire time Jesus didn’t eat anything and became very hungry.

Satan tried to deceive Jesus, saying, “Since you’re God’s Son, why don’t you turn these rocks into loaves of bread to eat?”

Jesus answered him, “No. When God spoke to Moses, He said, ‘People need more than bread to live. They must find their life in the words of God.’”

Then Satan took Jesus to the top of the tallest building in Jerusalem and said, “If you are God’s Son, jump off! Your sacred writings say, ‘God will send His angels to catch you, and you won’t even hit the ground!’”

Jesus replied, “Moses also wrote, ‘Do not even try to test God.’”

Next Satan took Jesus to the peak of a huge mountain. He showed Him all the nations of the world in their brilliance. He said, ”I will give you all of this—anything you want—if you’ll kneel down and worship me.”

Jesus responded, “Get away from me, Satan! It’s commanded, ‘Put God above everything else and only worship Him!’”

Then Satan went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus. At this time he was about thirty years old. Throughout Jesus’ life He never sinned or rebelled against God. He always chose to do what was good and right and true.


Not long after that, John saw Jesus coming toward him and yelled out, “Look! There is God’s Passover Lamb. He’ll take away the sins of the world! God showed me He’s the Messiah we’ve been waiting for.”

As Jesus walked along the sea He told some of John’s followers, “Come and follow me!” From then on Jesus surrounded Himself with a few close followers, called disciples, showing them how to live in the ways of God.

Then Jesus traveled throughout the area, meeting in market places, homes, and Jewish synagogues, teaching people God’s ways. He brought a new message to them, saying, “The Kingdom of God has come. Turn from your sins and turn to God!”

Jesus healed people with every kind of sickness and disease. News spread quickly about Him, and huge crowds began following Him wherever He went. People traveled from miles away to be near Him and see the amazing miracles He performed.



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