Christ Comes to the World
1In the beginning there was the Word. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was with God in the beginning. 3All things were made by him, and nothing was made without him. 4In him there was life, and that life was the light of all people. 5The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overpowered it.
6There was a man named John who was sent by God. 7He came to tell people the truth about the Light so that through him all people could hear about the Light and believe. 8John was not the Light, but he came to tell people the truth about the Light. 9The true Light that gives light to all was coming into the world!
10The Word was in the world, and the world was made by him, but the world did not know him. 11He came to the world that was his own, but his own people did not accept him. 12But to all who did accept him and believe in him he gave the right to become children of God. 13They did not become his children in any human way—by any human parents or human desire. They were born of God.
14The Word became a human and lived among us. We saw his glory—the glory that belongs to the only Son of the Father—and he was full of grace and truth. 15John tells the truth about him and cries out, saying, “This is the One I told you about: ‘The One who comes after me is greater than I am, because he was living before me.’ ”
16Because he was full of grace and truth, from him we all received one gift after another. 17The law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18No one has ever seen God. But God the only Son is very close to the Father, and he has shown us what God is like.
John Tells People About Jesus
19Here is the truth John told when the leaders in Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him, “Who are you?”
20John spoke freely and did not refuse to answer. He said, “I am not the Christ.”
21So they asked him, “Then who are you? Are you Elijah?”
He answered, “No, I am not.”
“Are you the Prophet?” they asked.
He answered, “No.”
22Then they said, “Who are you? Give us an answer to tell those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?”
23John told them in the words of the prophet Isaiah:
“I am the voice of one
calling out in the desert:
‘Make the road straight for the Lord.’ ”#Isaiah 40:3
24Some Pharisees who had been sent asked John: 25“If you are not the Christ or Elijah or the Prophet, why do you baptize people?”
26John answered, “I baptize with water, but there is one here with you that you don’t know about. 27He is the One who comes after me. I am not good enough to untie the strings of his sandals.”
28This all happened at Bethany on the other side of the Jordan River, where John was baptizing people.
29The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him. John said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! 30This is the One I was talking about when I said, ‘A man will come after me, but he is greater than I am, because he was living before me.’ 31Even I did not know who he was, although I came baptizing with water so that the people of Israel would know who he is.”
32-33Then John said, “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven in the form of a dove and rest on him. Until then I did not know who the Christ was. But the God who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘You will see the Spirit come down and rest on a man; he is the One who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’ 34I have seen this happen, and I tell you the truth: This man is the Son of God.”
The First Followers of Jesus
35The next day John was there again with two of his followers. 36When he saw Jesus walking by, he said, “Look, the Lamb of God!”
37The two followers heard John say this, so they followed Jesus. 38When Jesus turned and saw them following him, he asked, “What are you looking for?”
They said, “Rabbi, where are you staying?” (“Rabbi” means “Teacher.”)
39He answered, “Come and see.” So the two men went with Jesus and saw where he was staying and stayed there with him that day. It was about four o’clock in the afternoon.
40One of the two men who followed Jesus after they heard John speak about him was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. 41The first thing Andrew did was to find his brother Simon and say to him, “We have found the Messiah.” (“Messiah” means “Christ.”)
42Then Andrew took Simon to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon son of John. You will be called Cephas.” (“Cephas” means “Peter.”)
43The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, “Follow me.”
44Philip was from the town of Bethsaida, where Andrew and Peter lived. 45Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the man that Moses wrote about in the law, and the prophets also wrote about him. He is Jesus, the son of Joseph, from Nazareth.”
46But Nathanael said to Philip, “Can anything good come from Nazareth?”
Philip answered, “Come and see.”
47As Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him, he said, “Here is truly an Israelite. There is nothing false in him.”
48Nathanael asked, “How do you know me?”
Jesus answered, “I saw you when you were under the fig tree, before Philip told you about me.”
49Then Nathanael said to Jesus, “Teacher, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.”
50Jesus said to Nathanael, “Do you believe simply because I told you I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than that.” 51And Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, you will all see heaven open and ‘angels of God going up and coming down’ on the Son of Man.”
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The Holy Bible, New Century Version, Copyright © 2005 Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved.