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  The Great Bible Story #93
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Jesus starts His ministry

Jacob Ninan
One day John the baptiser spoke up against King Herod who had taken his brother Philip's wife Herodias as his wife. Herod caught John and put him in jail. After this, Herod was having a feast with many guests and he asked Salome, Herodias' daughter, to come and dance. She did so well that he declared she could ask from him whatever she wanted. Salome consulted with her mother, and Herodias told her to ask for John's head on a platter! Herod agreed because he didn't want to look silly in front of the guests, even though he had respect for John as a godly man and used to listen to him.

When Jesus heard that John was in jail, He started going around, preaching the message of repentance from sin and turning to God, saying that the kingdom of God was near. He also moved to Capernaum by the Sea of Galilee. Two of John's disciples came to see Jesus. One of them was Andrew, and he went and told his brother Simon that he had discovered the Messiah. When Simon came to see Jesus, He looked at him and told him his name would be Peter. One day as Jesus walked along the beach He saw the brothers Andrew and Simon casting a net into the sea. He told them that if they followed Him He would make them fishers of men. They immediately left their boats and followed Him. Further ahead, He saw two other fishermen brothers James and John who were repairing their nets. When He called, they also followed Him. Another man He called was Philip. Philip told his brother Nathaniel that perhaps Jesus was the Messiah. Nathaniel could not believe that anything good could come out of Nazareth (they all didn't know at that time that Jesus was really from Bethlehem). But when Jesus saw Nathaniel He told him how He had seen him even when he was sitting under a fig tree before Philip called him. Nathaniel was so astonished that he immediately believed. Another time Jesus met Matthew who was a tax collector and told him to follow Him. He too left his place immediately and followed Him.

In this way Jesus collected twelve men to be with Him, to learn from Him and to work with Him in His work. They came to be known as the twelve apostles (ones who are 'sent') who were later entrusted with taking the gospel throughout the world. They were also 'disciples' or 'learners' as those who follow their Master in order to become like Him. They travelled around Galilee and He preached everywhere about the kingdom of God. His name began to become very popular.


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