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Herod

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  • Herod

    The twelfth chapter of Acts begins with Herod's persecution of the church.
    About that time Herod the king laid violent hands on some who belonged to the church. He killed James the brother of John with the sword, and when he saw that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded to arrest Peter also. This was during the days of Unleavened Bread. And when he had seized him, he put him in prison, delivering him over to four squads of soldiers to guard him, intending after the Passover to bring him out to the people.
    (Acts 12:1-4 ESV)
    (This was neither the Herod who tried to kill Jesus when he was born or the one responsible for the death of John the Baptist. The fact that the Bible tells of three kings named Herod can be confusing to people who are just beginning to study the Bible. All three Herods did have one thing in common; all were enemies of Jesus and his followers.)

    He took special precautions to make sure Peter didn't escape.
    Now when Herod was about to bring him out, on that very night, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries before the door were guarding the prison.
    (Acts 12:6 ESV)
    Perhaps he was aware of how the apostles had been released from prison before and wanted to make sure it didn't happen again.
    But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said, “Go and stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this Life.”
    (Acts 5:19-20 ESV)
    The main part of the chapter describes how God sent an angel to release Peter in spite of Herod's precautions. Herod's response was order the execution of the soldiers who had been guarding Peter. I have written about this here:

    The guards | clydeherrin

    Next the death of Herod is described.
    Now Herod was angry with the people of Tyre and Sidon, and they came to him with one accord, and having persuaded Blastus, the king's chamberlain, they asked for peace, because their country depended on the king's country for food. On an appointed day Herod put on his royal robes, took his seat upon the throne, and delivered an oration to them. And the people were shouting, “The voice of a god, and not of a man!”

    Immediately an angel of the Lord struck him down, because he did not give God the glory, and he was eaten by worms and breathed his last.
    (Acts 12:20-23 ESV)
    Did you notice why Herod died? It wasn't because he killed one apostle and tried to kill another. It was because he didn't give God the glory. Apparently God regards the death of his servants as a lesser sin that failure to glorify him.

    I wonder how many people there are who would never murder another human being but who live their lives without thinking seriously about God and without giving him the glory he deserves.
    Last edited by theophilus; 03-28-2016, 02:51 PM.
    Clyde Herrin's Blog

  • #2
    Originally posted by theophilus View Post
    (This was neither the Herod who tried to kill Jesus when he was born or the one responsible for the death of John the Baptist. The fact that the Bible tells of three kings named Herod can be confusing to people who are just beginning to study the Bible. All three Herods did have one thing in common; all were enemies of Jesus and his followers.)
    Actually there are five.

    Herod the Great who was king when Jesus was born.

    Herod Archelaus (son of Herod the Great) in Matthew 2:22.

    Herod Antipas (son of Herod the Great) who had John the Baptist killed.

    Herod Agrippa I (grandson of Herod the Great) in Acts 12.

    Herod Agrippa II (son of Herod Agrippa I) in Acts 26.

    And there were others but they are not mentioned in the New Testament.
    Comment>

    • #3
      That is true but Herod Archelaus is called simply Archelaus and Herod Agrippa II is called Agrippa. As far as I know only three of them are called by the name of Herod.
      Clyde Herrin's Blog
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      • #4
        Originally posted by theophilus View Post
        That is true but Herod Archelaus is called simply Archelaus and Herod Agrippa II is called Agrippa. As far as I know only three of them are called by the name of Herod.
        They were all referred to as Herod outside the N.T. The only exception appears to be Philip the Tetrarch. According to Cambridge Ancient History, Vol.10 Philip "unlike his brothers, did not use Herod as a dynastic name."
        Comment>

        • #5
          Originally posted by theophilus View Post
          (This was neither the Herod who tried to kill Jesus when he was born or the one responsible for the death of John the Baptist. The fact that the Bible tells of three kings named Herod can be confusing to people who are just beginning to study the Bible. All three Herods did have one thing in common; all were enemies of Jesus and his followers.)
          They were also Jews and kings of the Jews.

          In an effort to save Jesus from crucifixion, Pilate took Jesus to Herod. The chief priests and scribes vehemently accused Jesus to Herod, but Herod found Jesus to be innocent.

          Comment>

          • #6
            Originally posted by Cornelius View Post
            Herod found Jesus to be innocent.
            Then why didn't he release him instead of sending him back to Pilate?
            Clyde Herrin's Blog
            Comment>

            • #7
              Originally posted by Cornelius View Post
              They were also Jews and kings of the Jews.
              Herod the Great was Idumaean.

              Comment>

              • #8
                Originally posted by theophilus View Post
                Then why didn't he release him instead of sending him back to Pilate?
                "I did not find this man guilty of any of your charges against him. Neither did Herod." - Pontius Pilate.

                Why didn't they release him? Jews, that's why. "I will therefore punish and release him.” Pilate went on to say, but the Jews cried out, “Away with this man". The Jews continued to scream and incite violence, Pilate addressed them once more, desiring to release Jesus, but they kept shouting, “Crucify, crucify him!” A third time he said to them, “Why, what evil has he done? I have found in him no guilt deserving death."

                The Jews killed Jesus for being Christ, and they held over Pilate the threat of turning the region into a bloody war (which happened 40 years later, anyway) if Pilate didn't do the Jews' bidding, but yet the Jews were too cowardly to do their own bidding (executing people themselves was illegal under Roman law).
                Comment>

                • #9
                  Originally posted by Origen View Post
                  Herod the Great was Idumaean.

                  Herod the Great was an Idumaean Jew, and king of the Jews.
                  Comment>

                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Cornelius View Post
                    Herod the Great was an Idumaean Jew, and king of the Jews.
                    According to the sources Herod father was Antipater the Idumaean and his mother was Cypros a Nabatean. Idumaeans are from the stock of Edom and Nabatean are Arabic. He was not Jewish according to race. The only reason he was king of the Jews is because that is what Rome wanted.

                    I have read a number of sources which claim he was raised Jewish. But the truth is, as best I can tell, the only time Herod was Jewish was when he needed to be.
                    Comment>

                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Origen View Post
                      He was not Jewish according to race. The only reason he was king of the Jews is because that is what Rome wanted.

                      I have read a number of sources which claim he was raised Jewish. But the truth is, as best I can tell, the only time Herod was Jewish was when he needed to be.
                      Being circumcised and raised a Jew, and never leaving the religion, makes Herod 100% a Jew. His background meets the requirements to make him a Jew, even if he wasn't always a very observant Jew. Jewish according to race is no more meaningful than Christian according to race.
                      Comment>

                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Cornelius View Post
                        Being circumcised and raised a Jew, and never leaving the religion, makes Herod 100% a Jew. His background meets the requirements to make him a Jew, even if he wasn't always a very observant Jew. Jewish according to race is no more meaningful than Christian according to race.
                        The Idumaeans were force to convent by John Hyrcanus. I doubt there was any real loyalty. As for him the "leaving the religion," we have no evidence that he ever practiced it. The truth is he had to keep the Jews pacified for his own sake and because of Rome.

                        Comment>

                        • #13
                          I wish I had left out the paragraph about there being three Herods. It isn't essential to the point I was trying to make in the post and it has led to some unnecessary arguing.
                          Clyde Herrin's Blog
                          Comment>

                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Cornelius View Post
                            Being circumcised and raised a Jew, and never leaving the religion, makes Herod 100% a Jew. His background meets the requirements to make him a Jew, even if he wasn't always a very observant Jew. Jewish according to race is no more meaningful than Christian according to race.
                            The Idumaeans were force to convent by John Hyrcanus. I doubt there was any real loyalty. As for him "leaving the religion," we have no evidence that he ever practiced it because he was a faithful follower. The truth is he had to keep the Jews pacified for his own sake and because of Rome.
                            Last edited by Origen; 03-30-2016, 05:21 AM.
                            Comment>

                            • #15
                              Originally posted by theophilus View Post
                              I wish I had left out the paragraph about there being three Herods. It isn't essential to the point I was trying to make in the post and it has led to some unnecessary arguing.
                              What did you want to tell us?
                              Comment>
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