Matthew 14:3-12. Beheaded 26 May 2023
Mat 14:3 Now it was Herod who had arrested John,
chained him up and put him in prison because of Herodias,
his brother Philip's wife.
Mat 14:4 For John had told him,
'It is against the Law for you to have her.'
Mat 14:5 He had wanted to kill him but was afraid of the people,
who regarded John as a prophet.
Mat 14:6 Then,
during the celebrations for Herod's birthday,
the daughter of Herodias danced before the company
and so delighted Herod
Mat 14:7 that he promised on oath to give her anything she asked. Mat 14:8 Prompted by her mother she said,
'Give me John the Baptist's head, here, on a dish.'
Mat 14:9 The king was distressed but,
thinking of the oaths he had sworn and of his guests,
he ordered it to be given her,
Mat 14:10 and sent and had John beheaded in the prison.
Mat 14:11 The head was brought in on a dish and given to the girl,
who took it to her mother.
Mat 14:12 John's disciples came and took the body and buried it;
then they went off to tell Jesus.
Like Jesus, each time I hear this story, I bow my head and feel sad.
It is a story with a lot of humanity. It is easy to say about all of the characters, 'I would never do such a thing!' Over the years I have learned that I am capable of any kind of evil, especially when circumstance drive me.
Jesus, have mercy on me and other sinners.