LISTEN: The Story of Big Tom Taking the Whipping for His Classmate Little Jim (Gospel Light Minute X #396 with Daniel Whyte III)

This is the “chief of sinners,” Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, with the Gospel Light Minute X Podcast #396 titled, “The Story of Big Tom Taking the School Whipping for His Classmate Little Jim.” I’m here to remind you of what the Bible says, that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” like you and me

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Rev. A. C. Dixon, the Baptist preacher who was born in the mountains of Virginia, relates the following incident:

Years ago, there was a certain school in this section of the mountains which no teacher could handle, and none lasted very long. The boys were so rough that every teacher resigned.

A young gray-eyed teacher soon applied for the position. The old school director looked him up and down, and then said, “Young fellow. Do you have any idea what you are getting yourself into? An awful beatin’ from the students! Every teacher we have had for years has had to take it.”

The serious-minded teacher replied, “I’ll take the risk.”

On the following Monday morning, as he stood before his new students, one big fellow, Tom, whispered to his classmates. “I won’t need any help, I can lick him by myself!”

The teacher said, “Good morning, boys! We have come to conduct school, but I confess I do not know how unless you help me. Suppose we have a few rules. You tell me and I will write them on the blackboard.”

One fellow yelled, “No stealing!” Another yelled, “On time!” Finally, ten rules were written across the blackboard.

“Now,” said the teacher, “a law is not good unless there is a penalty attached. What shall we do with the one who breaks them?”

“Beat him across the back ten times without his coat on,” was the decision of the boys.

“That is pretty severe boys. Are you ready to stand by it?” Inquired the teacher. Another yell and the teacher said, “The rules stand. School comes to order!”

All was going well until in a day or so “Big Tom” found his lunch had been stolen. Upon inquiry, the thief was located — a hungry little fellow by the name of Jim, about ten years old.

The next morning the teacher announced, “We have found the thief and he must be punished according to your rules — ten stripes across the back! Jim, come up here!”

The little fellow trembling, came up slowly with a big winter coat fastened up to the neck and pleaded, “Teacher, you can whip me hard as you like, but please don’t make me take off my coat.”

“You must take that coat off, you helped make the rules,” the teacher said firmly.

“Oh, teacher, don’t make me!” But he began to unbutton the huge, rugged coat anyway, and what did the teacher behold? Lo, the lad had no shirt on, with only strings for suspenders over his little bony body.

“How can I whip this child?” thought he. “But I must do something if I am to keep this school.” The classroom was quiet as death.

“How come you to be without a shirt, Jim?” asked the young teacher. Jim replied, “My father died this year and mother is very poor. I have only one shirt to my name and she is washing that today, so I wore my brother’s big coat to keep warm.”

The teacher, with rod in hand hesitated. Just then, from the back of the schoolroom, ‘Big Tom’ jumped to his feet and said, “Teacher wait! I will take Jim’s whipping for him!”

“Very well, there is a certain law whereby one can become a substitute for another. Are you all agreed?”

Off came ‘Big Tom’s’ coat, and after five hard lashes, the rod broke! The teacher bowed his head in his hands and thought, “How can I finish this awful task?”

Then he heard the entire school sobbing, and what did he see? Little Jim had reached up and caught Tom with both arms around his neck. “Tom, I am sorry I stole your dinner, but I was awful hungry. Tom, I’ll love you till I die for taking my whipping for me. Yes, I’ll love you forever!”

Friend, you have broken rules and deserve punishment! You have broken God’s Laws! But Jesus Christ took your scourging (beating) for you; He died in your place and now offers you His garments of salvation. Will you not fall at His feet and tell Him you will love and follow Him forever? The Bible says in Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 10:9 states, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died in your place and rose again from the dead and you are willing to trust Jesus Christ with all of your heart so you can go to Heaven, please pray with me what is called the sinner’s prayer: Holy Father God, I acknowledge that I am a sinner and I admit that I have sinned against You and that I have broken Your Ten Commandments. I have lied before. I have stolen things before. I have lusted after people and things before. I have dishonored and disobeyed my parents. I have taken Your holy Name in vain. For Jesus Christ’s sake, please have mercy and grace upon my soul and forgive me of all of my sins, my failures, and my faults. As I now believe in Your Holy Son the Lord Jesus Christ. I believe that He suffered, bled, and died on the cross for my sins, was buried and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit and help me to repent of my sins past. Help me to turn from my old, evil life and follow You in the new life. For it is in Your Name I pray. Amen.


Thank you for listening to this Gospel presentation. If you have decided to trust Jesus Christ as your Saviour after listening to this podcast, please email us at [email protected] and let us know. To find out more about what you need to do after trusting Christ as Savior, visit and read “What to Do After You Enter Through the Door”.

The tract this podcast is based on is published by Gospel Tract Society, a non-profit organization whose purpose is to spread God’s Word to the world through the printed page and other media. You can order copies of this tract online at

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