Luke 3:1-6 New Century Version (NCV)
The Preaching of John
3 It was the fifteenth year of the rule of Tiberius Caesar. These men were under Caesar: Pontius Pilate, the ruler of Judea; Herod, the ruler of Galilee; Philip, Herod’s brother, the ruler of Iturea and Traconitis; and Lysanias, the ruler of Abilene. 2 Annas and Caiaphas were the high priests. At this time, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the desert. 3 He went all over the area around the Jordan River preaching a baptism of changed hearts and lives for the forgiveness of sins.
4 As it is written in the book of Isaiah the prophet:
“This is a voice of one
who calls out in the desert:
‘Prepare the way for the Lord.
Make the road straight for him.
5 Every valley should be filled in,
and every mountain and hill should be made flat.
Roads with turns should be made straight,
and rough roads should be made smooth.
6 And all people will know about the salvation of God!’” Isaiah 40:3–5
Philippians 1:3-11 New Century Version (NCV)
3 I thank my God every time I remember you,
4 always praying with joy for all of you.
5 I thank God for the help you gave me while I preached the Good News—help you gave from the first day you believed until now.
6 God began doing a good work in you, and I am sure he will continue it until it is finished when Jesus Christ comes again.
7 And I know that I am right to think like this about all of you, because I have you in my heart. All of you share in God’s grace with me while I am in prison and while I am defending and proving the truth of the Good News.
8 God knows that I want to see you very much, because I love all of you with the love of Christ Jesus.
9 This is my prayer for you: that your love will grow more and more; that you will have knowledge and understanding with your love;
10 that you will see the difference between good and bad and will choose the good; that you will be pure and without wrong for the coming of Christ;
11 that you will be filled with the good things produced in your life by Christ to bring glory and praise to God.