- What, according to the preaching of John, are the cause (verses 7-9, 16, 17), nature (verses 8, 10-14), and outcome (verses 3, 15-17) of repentance?
- What did Jesus’ baptism and the voice from heaven, mean:
(a) to Jesus himself, and
(b) to the others present?
Cf. John 1:32-34.
- Consider the fearless honesty of John. Note also its result (verses 19,20).
- Notice the time of the temptation, immediately after the revelation of 3:22, and at the start of Jesus’ ministry. What light does this throw on the devil’s challenge, ‘if you are the Son of God’ (4;3 9)?
- Consider the special subtlety of each temptation, and the means by which Jesus in each case countered them. Cf. Eph. 6:17.
What does this teach us for our own defence against temptation
- Verse 1. The date is thus fixed probably as AD 28-29. See NBD, p.194.
- Verse 22. The voice combines references to the Old Testament Messianic figures of the Son of God (ps. 2:7) and the suffering Servant of the Lord (Is. 42:1), thus setting the tone of Jesus’ ministry