ADVENT 2019 | Wk 4: “Love”
Pastor Mike Overstreet | 12.22.2019
Message recordings available at: https://vimeo.com/element3
King Herod in History
- King Herod’s father came to prominence by collaborating with the Romans.
- King Herod becomes the King of the Jews by helping Rome conquer his own people.
- He was a shrewd, masterclass manipulator.
- Used Roman connections to maintain power & undermine rivals
- Used public works & rebuilding the Temple to manipulate his own people.
- He was incredibly paranoid & brutal.
- Violently crushed all perceived threats – including members of his own family.
- Caesar Augustus: “I would rather be Herod’s pig than his son.”
Matthew 2:7-8 (NIV)
Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.”
Matthew 2:12-13 (NIV)
And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.
When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up,” he said, “take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.”
Matthew 2:16 (NIV)
When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi.
The Challenge of King Herod’s Story
- We must be willing to find ourselves in King Herod – surrendering our pursuit of control, status & power in light of God’s Kingdom.
- We must find ourselves in God’s invitation to Herod as well – an invitation into healing, newness, & love; not self-loathing & shame.
- We must grow into people who can be the Good News of Love to the villains of our world.
Matthew 5:43-45 (NIV)
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.