Thursday, December 10

Read Matthew 2:4-6

King Herod, or Herod the Great, as he liked to be called, was a cruel, power-hungry ruler who destroyed anyone he feared was trying to topple him from his throne. He even killed several members of his own family because he thought they were plotting against him.

When the wise men came to Jerusalem they asked the people where they could find this new-born-king of the Jews? When King Herod heard what the wise men were asking, he demanded his chief priests and scribes tell him where the prophets said this new king was to be born, and he demanded them to come tell him where they found Him, so he could go worship him too. But, as we will see, his assistance to the wise men was for his own benefit, as was his desire to find the Christ child.

While Jesus did come as the spiritual king of the Jews, He had not come to take over the throne of Herod. Satan knew that, but he deceived Herod and put the fearful thought into Herod’s mind: “With this new king of the Jews, your throne is in danger. You must eliminate this new king as soon as possible.”  When Satan entered Herod’s heart, and Jesus became a threat to his rule, he began to plot to kill Jesus Christ.

Joseph and Mary were weaklings compared to Herod’s armies, and a newborn baby was no match for the King. So his plan was made Herod ordered the death of every child in Bethlehem under the age of two.

What Herod did not know was that God had already warned Joseph and Mary about his diabolical plot, and they had already escaped to Egypt to protect Jesus. So, while God prepared the way for Joseph, Mary and Jesus to be spared, King Herod died at the end of this chapter.

Herod wasn’t the last ruthless ruler to try to destroy Jesus Christ and His people. Even in our day evil men are still rising up against God’s people, both Jews and Christians.

Very soon, the Lord Jesus will return to judge all evil, and Satan’s defeat will be complete. The question now is this: “On whose side are you?”

Rachel’s Tomb in Bethlehem