Rejected by His
Own People (13:54-58)
Herod’s Understanding of Jesus
Death of John
the Baptist (14:3-12)
and intention to kill him (3-5)
John beheaded by
the request of Herodias’ daughter (6-11)
Burial of John’s
body and report to Jesus (12)
astonished, wisdom, mighty works, offended, feared.
1a. They only looked at Jesus’ humble origin and common
background. They thought they knew Jesus, but they didn’t truly know Him. Instead
of believing Jesus because of His wisdom and great power, they were blinded by
their false expectation that a true prophet must come from an extraordinary
background (cf. 11:1-6).
1c. Sometimes we take pride in the fact that we are zealous
Christians, and that we know the Bible all too well and are close to the Lord.
We may think that we have heard it all and seen it all. In our presumption, we
may not pay as much attention to the admonitions and teachings of the Bible or
have the eager desire to know him more (cf. Eph 1:17).
2a. They did not believe him to be the Messiah nor honor him as
2b. It would be of little value for the Lord to work in those
who do not believe in him. All of God’s works, including miracles, become only
spectacles if we do not receive them with faith. Miracles and signs help to
strengthen our faith, but it is true faith in the Lord that saves. See Lesson
13, question 5.
3. He was
probably in great fear. Perhaps he was afraid of retaliation or potential woe
that might befall him because of his sinful act.
4a. He was a
timid man. He always cared about what others think of him and tried to please
everyone (3,5,9). He was also afraid to change himself
even though he knew what he did was wrong.
4b. To overcome the weakness of trying to please everyone even
when we know that doing so would involve a wrongful act, we must first realize
that we have to ultimately answer to God, not to men (1Cor 4:3-5).
5a. Herod was
living in sin. Instead of repenting and changing his ways, he and Herodias wanted to kill John so as to remove their feeling
5b. People hate
the light because their deeds are evil (Jn 3:19,20). Many people today refuse to come to Christ not because
they do not understand the truth, but that they are unwilling to acknowledge
their sin and leave their lives of sin.
6. In his
pleasure, he made a hasty promise which he later regretted. Too much pleasure
can take away our sobriety and make us unfit to make wise judgments (Prov 31:3,4; Eph 5:18; Lk 21:34). We must also be careful not to make vows too
hastily or speak proud words when things are smooth; we may regret the
7. John the
Baptist suffered and died for righteousness’ sake (cf. 5:11,12).
He was a man of courage who pointed out the wrongs of Herod even though he knew
that Herod was a cruel ruler. As we preach the truth for Christ, we will often
offend those who live in sin. But for the sake of accomplishing God’s will and
out of our love for others, we must continue to stand up against wickedness and
speak for the Lord.