A. 24 And when the messengers of John were departed, he began to speak unto the people concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness for to see? A reed shaken with the wind? 25 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? Behold, they which are gorgeously apparelled, and live delicately, are in kings ‘courts.
B. 26 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? Yea, I say unto you, and much more than a prophet.
C. 27 This is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
B’. 28 For I say unto you, Among those that are born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist: but he that is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.
A’. 29 And all the people that heard him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John. 30 But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him.
2A. 31 And the Lord said, Whereunto then shall I liken the men of this generation? and to what are they like?
2B. 32 They are like unto children sitting in the marketplace, and calling one to another, and saying, We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced;
2C. we have mourned to you, and ye have not wept.
2C’. 33 For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine; and ye say, He hath a devil.
2B’. 34 The Son of man is come eating and drinking; and ye say, Behold a gluttonous man, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners!
2A’. 35 But wisdom is justified of all her children.