When we think of the disciples of Jesus, the names that come to our mind are Peter, James, and John. However, before following Jesus, two of John’s disciples were already following him.
These two disciples of John are rarely mentioned in the Bible but their decision to follow Jesus played a crucial role in the spreading of Christianity. Let’s take a closer look at who these two disciples were.
John the Baptist was a prominent religious figure at the time of Jesus’ birth. He preached repentance and baptized people in the Jordan River.
He was seen as a prophet by many and had a large following. Among his followers were two men named Andrew and an unnamed disciple.
The First Disciple – Andrew
Andrew is known as one of the twelve apostles and is often mentioned alongside his brother Peter. However, before becoming an apostle, he was a disciple of John the Baptist.
It was John who pointed out Jesus to Andrew saying “Behold the Lamb of God!” (John 1:36). This prompted Andrew to go and meet Jesus.
After meeting Jesus, Andrew immediately recognized him as the Messiah and went on to share this news with his brother Peter. Andrew became one of Jesus’ closest disciples and played an important role in spreading Christianity after Jesus’ death.
The Second Disciple – The Beloved Disciple
The second disciple of John is often referred to as “the beloved disciple” or “the disciple whom Jesus loved”. He is not named in any of the gospels but is believed by many scholars to be John himself.
This disciple is mentioned several times in the gospel of John, including at the Last Supper where he reclines next to Jesus. He is also present at several key moments in Jesus’ life including his crucifixion and resurrection.
It’s not clear how this disciple came to follow Jesus but it’s possible that he was also introduced to Jesus by John the Baptist. Regardless of how he came to follow Jesus, his close relationship with him is evident in the gospel accounts.
The Significance of their Decision
The decision of Andrew and the beloved disciple to follow Jesus was significant for several reasons. Firstly, it shows that John the Baptist’s ministry had an impact beyond his immediate followers. Secondly, it demonstrates that there were people who recognized Jesus as the Messiah even before his public ministry began.
Their decision also highlights the importance of personal relationships in spreading Christianity. Andrew’s decision to follow Jesus led to Peter becoming a disciple and eventually becoming a leader in the early Christian church. The beloved disciple’s close relationship with Jesus gave him insights into Jesus’ teachings and allowed him to share these teachings with others.
In conclusion, while Andrew and the beloved disciple may not be as well-known as some of the other disciples, their decision to follow Jesus played a crucial role in the spreading of Christianity. It reminds us that sometimes it’s those who work quietly behind the scenes who have the greatest impact.