Mark 1:4

John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.
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Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
John was in the desert baptizing, and preaching the baptism of penance unto remission of sins. That this remission was to be received from Christ and His baptism, which was the perfection and consummation of John"s baptism. For Christ. as it were the King of Heaven, preached that the kingdom must be received by His grace, of which the first part is remission of sins, which is given by the baptism of Christ, inasmuch as it is furnished and, as it were, animated by the Spirit and grace of Christ, according to those words of John (in Matthew 3: 11), "I indeed baptize you in water unto penance, but He that shall come after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear; He shall baptize you in the Holy Ghost and fire." And immediately the Spirit drove (Gr. ו̉ךגככוי, i.e, sends out, expels) Him out into the desert. The Spirit, i.e, the Holy Spirit, who a little while before had glided down upon Him in His baptism in the form of a dove. Drove, that Isaiah , impelled ...

Cyprian of Carthage

AD 258
The Lord was baptized by his servant. The holy One who was destined to grant remission of sins did not himself disdain to submit his body to be cleansed with the water of regeneration.

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
For the remission of sins. Some commentators think from this that the baptism of John remitted sins, though he says in another place, I baptize you with water, but there has stood one amongst you, who will baptize you with water and the Holy Spirit, to show that he did not baptize with the Holy Spirit, without which there is no remission of sin. This apparent difficulty will be easily reconciled, if we refer this expression to the word penance, and not baptism; so that by penance their sins were to be washed away, and there were baptized to show their detestation of their former life. (Jansenius, Concord. Evang.) ...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Since the Victim had not been offered, nor had the Holy Spirit yet descended, of what kind was this remission of sins? … Fittingly therefore, when he had said that he came “preaching the baptism of repentance,” he adds, “for the remission of sins”; as if to say: he persuaded them to repent of their sins, so that later they might more easily receive pardon through believing in Christ. For unless brought to it by repentance, they would not seek for pardon. His baptism therefore served no other end than as a preparation for belief in Christ. The Gospel of St. Matthew, Homily ...

Tertullian of Carthage

AD 220
John holds not his peace, saying, "Enter upon repentance, for now shall salvation approach the nations"

Tertullian of Carthage

AD 220
John called for the baptism of repentance to prepare the way for the Lord. He himself led in that way by means of the sign and seal of repentance for all whom God was calling through grace to inherit the promise surely made to Abraham…. He called us to purge our minds of whatever impurity error had imparted, whatever contamination ignorance had engendered, which repentance would sweep and scour away, and cast out. So prepare the home of your heart by making it clean for the Holy Spirit. ...

Tertullian of Carthage

AD 220
Those who sought the baptism of repentance were dealt with as if candidates preparing for the baptismal remission and sanctification that were soon to follow in the ministry of Christ. When John preached baptism for “the remission of sins,” the declaration was made with reference to a future remission. If so, John’s call to repentance is to lead the way, and actual remission is to follow. This is what is meant by “preparing the way.” But one who prepares does not himself perfect, but rather makes ready for another to perfect. ...

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. - 2 Peter 1:20

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