John the Baptist got his name because he
baptized people in the waters of the Jordan

John told people to make friends with God by
telling God they were sorry for bad things
they did, and promising to try to quit doing
them.  That is what it means to repent.

There was a king named Herod who took a
man's wife away from the man.  John the
Baptizer sent word to King Herod to let her
go back to her husband.  It just made King
Herod mad.

One day Jesus came to John.  "Baptize me,"
Jesus said.  John did not want to because
Jesus was so good.  But Jesus convinced him
because he wanted to be a good example to
us all.

Then John announced to everyone that Jesus
was the Son of God and they should follow

A few weeks later, some soldiers came from
King Herod.  The king did not want to let
the other man's wife go like John said.  He
had the soldiers put John in chains.

Then, to keep John quiet, King Herod threw
John into a dark dungeon where he couldn't
preach any more.

Herod had never met John in person.  He
was curious.  So sometimes he sent for John
and asked him about the new Kingdom of God
that John said was coming soon.

Mostly John stayed in that dark dungeon in
the basement of King Herod's castle.

While there, Jesus sent him a message
assuring John that he was performing
miracles to prove he really was the Son of
God.  That helped John when he was alone
and wondering if he had preached the right

Then one night King Herod had a birthday
party.  His new wife was as bad as Herod;
so was her grown daughter.

Her daughter asked Herod to kill John to get
him to quit telling him to let his new wife go
back to her real husband.

So Herod had John killed by some soldiers in
the dungeon.  But he did not stay alone, for
God's angels were there too.

Even though he was now dead, John could
suddenly see the angels.  They walked
together right into heaven, and John lives
there even today.

Dying is the only way we can get to
heaven.  When we die ~ and everyone dies
some time ~ we leave our old earthly body
behind and get a new body that our family
and friends on earth cannot see.  It is in
that body that we can go to heaven.  So
dying isn't so bad after all, is it?