There is one group of people in the Scriptures that rarely receives any attention, and when they do, not very much. These people left a small but distinct mark on the pages of our Bibles; we would do well to observe and learn. The example they offer us to follow is profound, and perhaps many Christians today are walking in their footsteps without even realizing it. Who was this obscure band?
They were the disciples of John the Baptist.
By their faith, this group of believers offers encouragement for those who are unsure of their spiritual direction. These men listened to the one who they knew was sent from God to prepare the way for the Messiah. As questions arose, they often came to Christ to seek the answer, and at least once we see the wisdom of John sending them for this purpose, perhaps for his own reassurance, but also likely as a means of increasing his disciples’ understanding and faith. There is one instance that stands out to me stronger than all the rest, and here this lowly group could not have improved their actions.
John the Baptist had recently been killed to meet the demands of an ungodly woman and her daughter. In a final act of esteem for their master, John’s disciples take up his body to give it a respectful resting place. But what happens next?
Matthew 14:12 states it with a quiet simplicity that pierces our hearts with the wisdom of their action.
“And his disciples came, and took up the body, and buried it, and went and told Jesus.” [emphasis added]
With hearts no doubt breaking, minds confused, souls in despair, they went and told Jesus. One simple choice: to rise and go, to tell the Lord what had taken place.
Go to Jesus – tell Him the struggle, the sorrow. Tell Him the hardness of your heart, the lure of the world. Tell Him all. Simply go to Jesus.
Out of my bondage, sorrow, and night, Jesus, I come.
Into Thy freedom, gladness and light, Jesus I come to Thee.
Out of my sickness, into Thy health, Out of my want and into Thy wealth,
Out of my sin and into Thyself, Jesus I come to Thee.
Out of my shameful failure and loss, Jesus, I come.
Into the glorious gain of Thy cross, Jesus, I come to Thee.
Out of earth’s sorrows, into Thy balm, Out of life’s storms and into Thy calm,
Out of distress to jubilant psalm, Jesus, I come to Thee.
Out of unrest and arrogant pride, Jesus, I come.
Into Thy blessed will to abide, Jesus, I come to Thee.
Out of myself to dwell in Thy love, Out of despair into raptures above,
Upward for aye on wings like a dove, Jesus, I come to Thee.
Out of the fear and dread of the tomb, Jesus, I come.
Into the joy and light of Thy home, Jesus, I come to Thee.
Out of the depths of ruin untold, Into the peace of Thy sheltering fold,
Ever Thy glorious face to behold, Jesus, I come to Thee.
-William T. Sleeper