Mark 1:1–8 (ESV)
John the Baptist Prepares the Way
1 The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
it is written in Isaiah the prophet,
“Behold, I send my messenger before your face,
who will prepare your way,
3 the voice of one crying in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord,
make his paths
4 John appeared, baptizing in the wilderness and proclaiming a baptism of repentance for
the forgiveness of sins. 5 And all the country of Judea and all Jerusalem were going out to him and were being baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. 6 Now John was clothed
with camel’s hair and wore a leather belt around his waist and ate locusts and wild honey. 7 And he preached, saying, “After me comes he who is mightier than I, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop
down and untie. 8 I have baptized you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
Mark begins by telling of (1) John’s
call to repentance, (2) Baptism, and (3) eager expectation of the Messiah’s coming. John warns us not to adopt worldly values and expectations. Happily, all of us who are baptized have received the promised Holy Spirit, who continually forgives us, restores
us, and focuses us on the splendor of Jesus’ second coming.
I pray: Lord, remind us of the washing we received in Baptism, for through it Your Holy Spirit was poured
into our hearts. Keep us steadfast in the hope of Your glory. Amen.
Edward A. Engelbrecht, The Lutheran Study Bible (St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 2009), 1655.