Herod Antipas seemed to have it all: ruler of Galilee and Perea, great wealth, married to King Aretas' daughter, and achieved many impressive accomplishments. However, he fell in love with his brother Philip's wife, Herodias and divorced his first wife to marry her. No doubt, this change in status was also attractive to Herodias, as Philip was not a ruler over any province.
John the Baptist warned Herod, saying, "It is not lawful for thee to have thy brother's wife" (Mark 6:18). But Herod would not listen. Consider the results of Herod's decision to marry Herodias:
•King Aretas declared war and defeated Herod. Herod was only saved when Rome intervened. •Herodias tricked Herod into beheading John the Baptist. •When Agrippa (Herodias' brother) was made king (a title Herod Antipas was never given), Herodias was jealous. She persuaded her husband to ask the emperor to also be given the title "king." Although Herod was reluctant, he did what his wife demanded, but this backfired with the emperor giving Herod's money and territory to Agrippa. Herod was then banished to Gaul, where he lived in exile until his death.
"The way of transgressors" indeed "is hard." God was faithful to warn Herod through John, but Herod did not take heed. How differently his life might have turned out if he had listened. This is a sobering example of "the way" of one who was a transgressor. It serves as a warning to us as we travel this road of life. God will be faithful, placing warning signs on our path. Oh, the importance of heeding His warnings!
Better, wiser than thy choosing Is the way that He will show: He wants His way in thee. — C. W. Naylor
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