Wednesday, June 3, 2009

MkITN VI, Verses 14 - 34

14. King Herod heard of what was happening, for Jesus' name and reputation by this time had become very well known. In fact, he was so taken by the reports he was hearing of Jesus' ministry, that he and the members of his court said, "John the Baptizer has apparently been raised from the dead! That can be the only explanation of why these mighty powers and abilities of His to perform miracles are at work!"

15. But others were saying, "No...it's not John...it is Elijah!" And still others said, "He is obviously a prophet, like one of the prophets of old."

16. But Herod was convinced. He insisted, "Seriously...I'm telling you, this is the very same John whom I beheaded...he has been raised from the dead!"

17. Herod was the one who had sent for and seized John, and bound him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip's wife, after he had married her.

18. The reason for this was that John had publicly told Herod, "It's not right or lawful for you to have your brother's wife like this!"

19. And, as a result, Herodias was incensed with him, and held a grudge that eventually turned into a desire to kill him...but she couldn't make that happen,

20. For Herod had a reverential fear and awe of John, believing that he was truly a holy man. Because of that, he continually kept him safely guarded. When he heard John speak, he actually became miserable with guilt...and yet he was strangely attracted to, and respectful of, John's fearless message...as if he had sort of a love/hate relationship with the prophet.

21. But one eventful evening, an opportunity came for Herodias when Herod, on his birthday, threw a party for his nobles, and the high military commanders and chief men of Galilee.

22. That night, when the daughter of Herodias came in and seductively danced for him, she ignited a kind of palpable passion in Herod and his guests...and the king, in a moment of desire, said to the girl, "Honey, you can ask me for whatever you desire...anything at all...and I'll give it to you!"

23. He even went so far as to put himself under oath to her, reiterating in front of everyone, "I mean it...whatever you ask for, I will give it to you...even to the half of my kingdom!"

24. So she left the room and excitedly said to her mother, "What should I ask for? And Herodias bitterly replied, "Ask for the head of John the Baptizer!"

25. And without missing a beat, she rushed back in to the king and made her dark request, saying, "I want you to give me the head of John the Baptizer on a platter right now!"

26. And the king immediately sobered up, instantly experiencing profound regret and remorse over his thoughtless oath. But even though he was deeply pained and grieved by this, because of his oaths and his guests, he did not want to be seen as someone who was too weak to keep such a promise.

27. So he sadly and reluctantly sent off one of the soldiers of his bodyguard, and gave him orders to decapitate John at once, and to bring his head. And the guard followed orders and left immediately to behead him in the prison,

28. And, according to the horrible request, brought his head on a platter and handed it to the girl. And the girl then gave it to her heartless mother.

29. When John's disciples heard the tragic news, they came and took his body and laid it in a tomb.
30. After this, the apostles came back and rendezvoused with Jesus, reporting on all that they had done and taught since He had commissioned them to go out on their own.

31. When they were through comparing notes, Jesus said to them, "Well done, gentlemen...now you need to get some well-deserved rest...come away by yourselves to a secluded place, and take it easy for a little while." He wanted them to start taking better care of themselves, for they were continually coming and going, being so involved in the work of the ministry that they regularly didn't even take time to eat.

32. So, according to instructions, they got in a boat and went off to a remote place by themselves.

33. But it had become virtually impossible by this point for them to have any real privacy...they were now as famous and as recognizable as Jesus. As a result, many people spotted them and saw where they were going, and they ran there on foot from all the surrounding towns, getting there ahead of those in the boat.

34. And Jesus went with them, too, but as His boat landed, He saw the great crowd waiting there. And instead of being resentful of this intrusion on what was supposed to have been a time of relaxation with His disciples, He was actually moved with compassion for them. He saw them as being like sheep without a shepherd, so He got out of the boat and just began to teach them many things right then and there.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

There is not much to say here. This gospel's point of view has been my favorite on this subject and this paraphrase even more so. The only good thing that comes to mind about this is that Herod kept the oath he had made in his drunkeness. I'm sure things were seen differently then than now but I don't think many drunken oaths are kept these days. Seems that I remember Pastor Dennis mentioning once that if we had to keep our drunken oaths we would probably talk less when drunk or maybe we wouldn't get drunk in the first place. Hemmingway said something like that once and I'm sure was speaking from experience.

On another note that is much brighter, I have been thinking over the sermon this past Sunday and will definately be getting the dvd tonight. The illustration of that word was as great as the word itself. It has been part of my meditations, no doubt inspired by your consistency in teaching on the power of the tongue, to think of ways that my own former words that were not used to their best potential can be turned around by speaking in connection to them a more powerful word of goodness in my life. I think in that attempt there have been a few people annoyed with me from time to time but it is the right season for it and is a significant part of the purpose for my time. I am still thinking about the message confirmed in prophecy Sunday also. There is so much around us that points to the validity of that word that it is a little bit of a wonder why that is not more prevailent in the church or maybe it is in the real church. It has certainly been real to us at CITN.

Gota go, the day is beautiful.

Anonymous said...

Anon, 7:24 AM. Yes. The day is beautiful!
Do you have the prophecy from Sun.?

Northern Light said...

These different paraphrasings from the different Gospels are exciting. The last time we saw this, I was incensed at the behavior and allowance of the mother, watching her daughter dance and seduce with her movements and words the King, and not "parent" her, but "party" with her.

And I lambasted her pretty well in my post, if i recall.

This version, I can't get past the idea that the King wasn't just some big ole, slardy, drunken, arrogant, middle aged somethin' somethin', BUT, that he was sad and regretful, human feeling and realized what he had said and done.

Though the decision he made he could have 'not', the descriptive terms you used to explain his demeanor made me see him in that exact way, perhaps for the first time ever.

Good job, AGAIN, Bish. You know how to get the job done, to have us thinking and seeing differently, letting things sink in for new appreciation and perspective.

How come HE waited 23 1/2 yrs into your CITN Ministry for me to get invited to a service there ?

Everything in HIS time, I know!

Peace,
Northern Light

Anonymous said...

respnse to anon @ 8:30 AM

No, I didn't write it down. That is part of the reason I want the dvd.

The day is still beautiful.

will bitb in a few.

tracy said...

I don't see the sin as the drunken promise as the pride that made him follow through. Sad story and one I am sure many of us can feel the regrets of to some extent. Don't you just wish Herod had a friend who took him home tucked him into bed and said dude let's talk about that in the morning before you go that far? Kinda like give me your keys til tomorrow kind of thing....

TheCenturion said...

My favorite part of this excerpt is the final few verses. Time and time agian throughout scripture you see where the people are litteraly drawn to Jesus and his disciples by some undescribed and yet powerful attraction. I myself have become aware of similar occurances in my own existence and have noticed that these instances are in direct correlation with the topic that I am either discussing or meditating on. When the Truth(and here I mean the eternal truth that is intrinsic to all that exists) is being shared it has the power to draw all things to itself on a deeply sub-conscience level. People poke their heads in or "show up just because" and it is easy to attribute this to coincidence, but when you become aware of the thoughts and words that preceed this coming together it becomes obvious that the Truth is responsible for this. The next time your phone rings remember what your thoughts or words were immediately before and you will see the same. The Bible describes this often and it is the Truth that unites us and the Truth that we all long to experience.

One other thought...the word coincidence is, I believe, mis-defined. The word truly describes an incident that is created with and by one or more people. Thus it is truly a co-incident brought to fruition by two or more coming together in unified purpose of mind and body. ...I leave out spirit because all things all eternally united in spirit wether that awareness exists.

Good to blog again!

TheCenturion said...

Anon at 7:24 how I do agree with you about your words. So powerful and often underestimated in that power, however I believe that he most overlooked creative force that is wielded by us as people is our thoughts. In James it says that if any man con control is tongue he is perfect in all his ways.
We know that our words are simply thoughts that are given the "physical" form of vibrations through our vocal chords, but the truth is that those words are first thoughts that we have the power to control in our minds before they become spoken. I have seen that all things are part of a "collective conscience" that some call God and others call by many different names. The key is to recognize that because we are all one and a part of this "collective conscience" evry person can hear, yes truly hear everyones thoughts. Meaning I can hear your thoughts and you can hear mine; and this ability is shared by all. I know that the key to always speaking the truth is to always think the truth.
When you think to yourself, "This person is stupid." (e.g.) the same spirit that is in you and me is in that person and hears that thought. Whether the person is aware of their ability to hear these thoughts they do and respond to these thoughts in what can most easily be described as a sub-conscience manner.

It is our thoughts that open or close people to the words of life(or of death) that we have design and desire to share. Control your thoughts and your words fall in line. To me it is going to the root of communication and taking back the control from a learned thought pattern and returning to an eternal thought pattern.

I have found that I hear myself think and that I can choose to think(or speak in my mind) blessing or cursing. This I believe is apropos to being in constant communication with The One. The One thinks and speaks only blessings and so too must I.

Izumi/JOY said...

14. ..."the only explanation of why these mighty powers and abilities of His to perform miracles!" (why, "only"?)

15. ..."like one of the prophets of old." Wonder what their contemporaries witnessed.

16. ..."John whom I beheaded"... reminds me of 1 Peter 1:20. (like Jesus, John was chosen before the world's creation, but revealed for their sakes)

Herod was convinced John had been raised from the dead - must have been terrifying.

v. 17 - 19 - "...sent for, seized and bound John." All in accordance with God's plan for mercy's triumph.

v. 20 - ..."continually kept him guarded" - until God's appointed hour.

"...as if he had some sort of love/hate relationship with the prophet." - like v. 16 of chapter IV. (what part was love? Look what Herod did.)

v. 22 - Before Herodias' daughter, Salome, ("perfect") was, God is.

Amazing that Herod might address Salome as, "Honey", right before opening heaven's scroll. (what was sweet to John would now sour in their stomachs)

Would be interesting if Herod heard Abba say that to His Son, in the beginning.

P. Avery said...

For Anon, June 3 @8:30

Prophetic Word
CITN
Bishop Jim Swilley
5-31-09

For it has been promised that you would be those who would taste of the world that is to come. The announcement goes forth heralded by angels that that age is here. The age of the Spirit of the Living God. This is the age of God, the age of the Spirit. You have left the old world, with the old world customs and the old world ways. You have come where Mount Zion is and by the power of the Spirit, you have discovered the new world.

The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come. Welcome to the New World…where the Spirit is Lord and where there is liberty.” Selah.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, P. Avery. This means a lot to me.

Anon @ 8:30.

Bishop Jim Swilley said...

So, P. Avery...whose idea was it to take the trees to Virginia? I hadn't considered it before you asked...

Avatar said...

Completely P.Ernie! I was still in Conyers working on mailouts to Partners when he texted me the question!