HEROD’S VIEW OF CHRISTMAS

Extended reading: Matthew 2

Devotional reading: vs. 13

Although most people saw the birth of Christ as wonderful, joyful, and praiseworthy, Herod had quite a different perspective regarding baby Jesus. When Herod heard about the magi from the east questioning the people in Jerusalem as to the whereabouts of “He who has been born King of the Jews,” he was troubled. The greek word for “troubled” is tarasso and it can mean to disturb, agitate, or stir up. Herod wasn’t just a bit off; He was seriously agitated about it.

But why? Herod saw the baby Jesus, the One born King of the Jews, as a threat to his throne. His power and authority as well as the future of his family ruling was in jeopardy if this baby was a king. Herod could not have that!

Herod secretly sets up a meeting with the magi (v.7) in order to find out the exact time the star appeared. He told them to report back to him when they found this baby and where he is located so “that I too may come and worship Him” (v.8). But Herod had no intentions of worshiping Jesus, rather his intentions were far more sinister than that. Herod wanted to kill the newborn baby!

An angel of the Lord appears to Joseph in a dream and tells him: “Get up! Take the child and His mother and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you; for Herod is going to search for the child to destroy Him” (v. 13).

Joseph obeys and remains in Egypt until the death of Herod. Herod had all the male children who were in Bethlehem and it’s vicinity from two years old and younger killed ((v. 16).  Why? Because he didn’t know what Jesus looked like, so he killed them all figuring that by doing so he would get the “anointed One.”

Sadly, there are still people today that despise the “anointed One,” King Jesus. He is a threat to their self-rule over their own lives. They too will go to extremes if it means getting rid of Jesus. Denial, false religions, and pure hate for the Lord are some means by which such people seek to render Him “dead” to them. They plot various ways in which to keep themselves on the throne of their hearts.

But, as we learn in this account, no one is powerful enough to stop Jesus from sitting on the throne that the Father promised Him! Jesus is King of Kings and Lord of Lord’s. The only right response is to worship Him!

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