Thursday, September 29, 2011

The King Was Sorry


Matthew 14:1-12

Herod the Great, the tyrant who had sought to kill the infant Jesus, had 10 wives.

He bequeathed his kingdom to three of his sons.

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Herod Antipas ruled over Galilee and Perea.

Philip ruled over the north eastern territories of the kingdom.

Archelaus ruled over Judea and Samaria.

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Archelaus was deposed by the Romans who then imposed direct rule over Judea and Samaria in AD 6.

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Pontius Pilate became governor of their territories in AD 26.

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The fame of the Lord Jesus Christ reached Herod Antipas who was living in adultery with Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife.

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John the Baptist had fearlessly denounced Herod Antipas for his sin.

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The enraged king had him thrown into the dungeon at his palace.

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The evil scheming Herodias wanted to kill John the Baptist.

She was unable to do so because Herod Antipas respected John the Baptist.

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Herod Antipas feared the reaction of the people who counted John the Baptist as a prophet.

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He also feared John the Baptist.

He heard him gladly.

But he did not repent of his sin.

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Herodias had her revenge when Herod Antipas made a rash promise to her daughter.

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She had pleased the king while dancing before him and his guests at his birthday party.

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Herod Antipas solemnly promised to give her whatever she desired.

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Herodias prompted her daughter to ask for the head of John the Baptist on a platter.

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The macabre request was granted.

John the Baptist was executed.

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Herod Antipas was sorry.

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But he did not have a godly sorrow which produces repentance.

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Herod Antipas had silenced John the Baptist.

But he was unable to silence his own conscience.

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When Herod Antipas heard about the Lord Jesus Christ, he thought that John the Baptist had risen from the dead.

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It is just not enough to feel sorry for our sin.

We must forsake it and obey God.

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