Matthew 14:12 - And his (John the Baptist's) disciples came and took the body and buried it, and they went and told Jesus.
Our text deals with the death of John the Baptist. Our Lord Himself said that no human being was greater than John, and must we not trace much of that preeminence to the fact that John had a godly father, and a praying mother? John, whom God called His messenger to go before the Savior, was a model minister, and perhaps no minister of God had the courage to denounce sin more unsparingly.
John, executed for his faithfulness to his Lord, was the first preacher to pay for his faith with his life, but not the last. Can you imagine the agony which gripped John's disciples when they heard of this horror? John had many ardent followers and enthusiastic supporters, but now they were left alone, their hopes shattered. How would they get along without their leader? Thank God, they also knew the One for whom John came, their unfailing Source of strength! As our text records, "they went and told Jesus."
These forlorn disciples who went to Jesus also remind our age—so full of skepticism and doubt—Who is the worlds' one unfailing Source and supply of true comfort: our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Here is Christ, God's Son, the Sovereign and Savior of your soul. He loves you, no matter how others hate you. He gave Himself for you so that you could be His in eternity. He took your sins upon Himself, permitted His holy body to be nailed to the cross, and lovingly paid the price for your transgressions.
As Jesus was for John's disciples, so He is for you and me. He is present for us all. Go to Him, tell Him of the anguish that weighs down your soul to the point of despair and know that, graciously, He will hear you and help you. This is the urgent plea for faith and trust In God that Lutheran Hour Ministries sends throughout the world. We bring the Good News of salvation in Christ and urge light-seekers to walk in the footsteps of John's disciples, to bring it all to Jesus.
Do you want the strength and spiritual power that come through faith in Christ? Then come to Him now. Accept Him as your Savior. Tell Him your troubles. Pray fervently, trusting Him in His Word, and as you bow before Him, the Son of God, the risen Savior of your soul, remember that He promises each and every one of us, "All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and whoever comes to Me I will never cast out" (John 6:37).
WE PRAY: Lord Jesus, when we hurt and are uncertain, may we come to You for love and understanding. Amen.
From "Tell It to Jesus!" a sermon excerpt from Rev. Dr. Walter A. Maier, the first Speaker of The Lutheran Hour
1. Where did John get such courage to denounce sin and proclaim the coming Messiah?
2. It would be fascinating to know what Jesus said to John's disciples when they came to Him with the news of John's murder. How might Jesus have reacted?
3. Why is it important for us to bring our sorrows and troubles to Jesus?
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