Have you ever heard the phrase; a little knowledge can be dangerous? Why is it dangerous? When you hear just enough information that incites a quick response because it troubles your soul, you make hasty decisions. You tend to “shoot from the hip” of your emotions without digging deeper into the research of true facts. Coupled with fear, which leads to anger, because what you have heard might affect you and your power base, you make a sweeping rash decision which will hurt all those in the wake of your reach. More than likely this leads to a mess to clean up.
Herod is the King residing over God’s people at the time Jesus entered the world as Truth. Herod did not follow God’s Law but knew just enough to be dangerous. Read on…
Matthew—The Law Fulfilled
Matthew 2, NLT
Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the reign of King Herod. About that time some wise men from eastern lands arrived in Jerusalem, asking, 2 “Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We saw his star as it rose and we have come to worship him.”
3 King Herod was deeply disturbed when he heard this, as was everyone in Jerusalem. 4 He called a meeting of the leading priests and teachers of religious law and asked, “Where is the Messiah supposed to be born?”
5 “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they said, “for this is what the prophet wrote:
6 ‘And you, O Bethlehem in the land of Judah,
are not least among the ruling cities of Judah,
for a ruler will come from you
who will be the shepherd for my people Israel.’”
7 Then Herod called for a private meeting with the wise men, and he learned from them the time when the star first appeared. 8 Then he told them, “Go to Bethlehem and search carefully for the child. And when you find him, come back and tell me so that I can go and worship him, too!”
9 After this interview the wise men went their way. And the star they had seen in the east guided them to Bethlehem. It went ahead of them and stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they were filled with joy! 11 They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
12 When it was time to leave, they returned to their own country by another route, for God had warned them in a dream not to return to Herod.
The Escape to Egypt
13 After the wise men were gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up! Flee to Egypt with the child and his mother,” the angel said. “Stay there until I tell you to return, because Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.”
14 That night Joseph left for Egypt with the child and Mary, his mother, 15 and they stayed there until Herod’s death. This fulfilled what the Lord had spoken through the prophet: “I called my Son out of Egypt.”
16 Herod was furious when he realized that the wise men had outwitted him. He sent soldiers to kill all the boys in and around Bethlehem who were two years old and under, based on the wise men’s report of the star’s first appearance. 17 Herod’s brutal action fulfilled what God had spoken through the prophet Jeremiah:
18 “A cry was heard in Ramah—
weeping and great mourning.
Rachel weeps for her children,
refusing to be comforted,
for they are dead.”
The Return to Nazareth
19 When Herod died, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt. 20 “Get up!” the angel said. “Take the child and his mother back to the land of Israel, because those who were trying to kill the child are dead.”
21 So Joseph got up and returned to the land of Israel with Jesus and his mother. 22 But when he learned that the new ruler of Judea was Herod’s son Archelaus, he was afraid to go there. Then, after being warned in a dream, he left for the region of Galilee. 23 So the family went and lived in a town called Nazareth. This fulfilled what the prophets had said: “He will be called a Nazarene.”
WHAT DO WE LEARN?
The gospel testimony of Matthew reaches back to what God said would happen through the prophets centuries before Jesus was born. God also knew how Herod would react to the news of Truth. God is sovereign. God had a plan from the beginning of time itself to bring Jesus into the world, protect him for the mission of saving the world. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)
God even told the prophets where Jesus would be born and where he would live until the time of fulfilling his ultimate mission to save those who believe in Him. Wow.
Do you believe?
Do you really believe that what you believe about God is really real?
TRUTH: God does what He says. Count on it. Truth wins. Jesus is the Person of Truth. The evil one is a The Liar who loves to provoke us with just enough knowledge to destroy what God is doing in and through us. Beware.
Abba, Father in Heaven,
You know us for you created us. You know us from the inside out. But you also gave us the choice to love you, believe in you, trust you and serve you. I believe. I choose you. I have decided and committed my thinking and behavior to you. Changes in me are inevitable and needed. Help me to think more like you each day so I will make the right decisions concerning my life which affects those around me as well as myself.
In Jesus Name, Amen