GOD'S WORD® Translation
1This is the beginning of the Good News about Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
2The prophet Isaiah wrote, "I am sending my messenger ahead of you to prepare the way for you."
3"A voice cries out in the desert: 'Prepare the way for the Lord! Make his paths straight!'"
4John the Baptizer was in the desert telling people about a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 5All Judea and all the people of Jerusalem went to him. As they confessed their sins, he baptized them in the Jordan River. 6John was dressed in clothes made from camel's hair. He wore a leather belt around his waist and ate locusts and wild honey. 7He announced, "The one who comes after me is more powerful than I. I am not worthy to bend down and untie his sandal straps. 8I have baptized you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit."
9At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan River. 10As Jesus came out of the water, he saw heaven split open and the Spirit coming down to him as a dove. 11A voice from heaven said, "You are my Son, whom I love. I am pleased with you."
14After John had been put in prison, Jesus went to Galilee and told people the Good News of God. 15He said, "The time has come, and the kingdom of God is near. Change the way you think and act, and believe the Good News."
16As he was going along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew. They were throwing a net into the sea because they were fishermen. 17Jesus said to them, "Come, follow me! I will teach you how to catch people instead of fish." 18They immediately left their nets and followed him. 19As Jesus went on a little farther, he saw James and John, the sons of Zebedee. They were in a boat preparing their nets [to go fishing]. 20He immediately called them, and they left their father Zebedee and the hired men in the boat and followed Jesus.
21Then they went to Capernaum. On the next day of worship, Jesus went into the synagogue and began to teach. 22The people were amazed at his teachings. Unlike their scribes, he taught them with authority. 23At that time there was a man in the synagogue who was controlled by an evil spirit. He shouted, 24"What do you want with us, Jesus from Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are-the Holy One of God!" 25Jesus ordered the spirit, "Keep quiet, and come out of him!" 26The evil spirit threw the man into convulsions and came out of him with a loud shriek. 27Everyone was stunned. They said to each other, "What is this? This is a new teaching that has authority behind it! He gives orders to evil spirits, and they obey him." 28The news about him spread quickly throughout the surrounding region of Galilee.
29After they left the synagogue, they went directly to the house of Simon and Andrew. James and John went with them. 30Simon's mother-in-law was in bed with a fever. The first thing they did was to tell Jesus about her. 31Jesus went to her, took her hand, and helped her get up. The fever went away, and she prepared a meal for them.
32In the evening, when the sun had set, people brought to him everyone who was sick and those possessed by demons. 33The whole city had gathered at his door. 34He cured many who were sick with various diseases and forced many demons out of people. However, he would not allow the demons to speak. After all, they knew who he was.
35In the morning, long before sunrise, Jesus went to a place where he could be alone to pray. 36Simon and his friends searched for him. 37When they found him, they told him, "Everyone is looking for you." 38Jesus said to them, "Let's go somewhere else, to the small towns that are nearby. I have to spread [the Good News] in them also. This is why I have come." 39So he went to spread [the Good News] in the synagogues all over Galilee, and he forced demons out of people.
40Then a man with a serious skin disease came to him. The man fell to his knees and begged Jesus, "If you're willing, you can make me clean." 41Jesus felt sorry for him, reached out, touched him, and said, "I'm willing. So be clean!" 42Immediately, his skin disease went away, and he was clean. 43Jesus sent him away at once and warned him, 44"Don't tell anyone about this! Instead, show yourself to the priest. Then offer the sacrifices which Moses commanded as proof to people that you are clean." 45When the man left, he began to talk freely. He spread his story so widely that Jesus could no longer enter any city openly. Instead, he stayed in places where he could be alone. But people still kept coming to him from everywhere.