1Now in those days Yochanan of the tevilah of teshuva appears, preaching, crying out as a maggid (preacher) [for the Moshiach] in the midbar (wilderness) of Yehudah, 2saying, Make teshuva, for the Malchut HaShomayim has come near. 3For this [Yochanan] is the one spoken of through Yeshayah the Navi, saying, KOL KOREY BAMIDBAR (A voice of one shouting in the wilderness, Isa 40:3): Prepare the Derech Hashem (the way of the L-rd). Make his paths straight! 4Now Yochanan himself had camel-hair clothing and a leather belt around his waist, and his food was arbe (locusts) and devash (wild honey). 5Then all Yerushalayim and all Yehudah and the whole region of the Yarden were going out to him. 6Making vidduy (confession of sin) [to Hashem] of their averos (sins), they were submitted to a tevilah (immersion) by him, using the Yarden River as a mikveh mayim (gathering of water). 7But when he saw many of the Perushim and Tzedukim coming to where he was using the Yarden as a mikveh mayim, Yochanan said to them, You banim (sons) of nachashim (snakes)! Who warned you to flee from the charon af [Hashem] habah (the coming burning wrath of Hashem)? 8Produce pri tov l'teshuva (fruit worthy of repentance)! 9Do not presume to say to yourselves, We have the yichus (proud lineage), we have the zechut Avot (merit of the Fathers) of Avraham Avinu (our father Abraham). For I say to you that Hashem is able to raise up from these avanim (stones) banim (sons) of Avraham. 10And already the ax is laid at the shoresh haetzim (the root of the trees); therefore, every etz not producing pri tov (good fruit) is cut down and thrown into the eish (fire). 11I give you a tevilah (immersion) in a mikveh mayim for teshuva, but Hu Habah (He who Comes; T.N. i.e., the Moshiach) after me has more chozek (strength) than me. I am not worthy to remove his sandals. He will give you a tevilah (immersion) with the Ruach Hakodesh and eish (fire). 12The winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear out his threshing floor, and he will gather his wheat into the storehouse; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable eish (fire). 13Then Yehoshua comes from the Galil to the Yarden to Yochanan, to submit to Yochanan's tevilah. 14But Yochanan would have deterred him, saying, I have need to submit to your tevilah [T.N. i.e., Moshiach's tevilah], and yet you come to me? 15But answering him, Yehoshua said, Permit it now, for thus it is proper to fulfill all Tzidkat Hashem [Dan 9:24]. 16And having received the tevilah in the Yarden's mikveh mayim, Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach immediately came up. And, hinei! The Shomayim were opened to him, and he saw the Ruach Hakodesh of Hashem descending like a yonah (dove) and coming upon him. 17And, hinei, a bat kol (a voice from heaven) came out of Shomayim, saying, ZEH BNI AHUVI ASHER BO CHAFATZTI (This is my Son, the beloved, with whom I am well pleased).
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2002,2003,2008,2010,2011 by Artists for Israel International, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.