We are in Matthew Chapter 14, and we have been reminded that John the Baptist did not preach a nice comfortable message, and nor would he do so to Herod and Herodias, and he had an extraordinary price to pay for his ministry of the Word of God.

Herod reveals just how weak and how easily influenced a man can be at times. It was his father who arranged that appalling slaughter of the children at the birth of Jesus. It was Herod who handed Jesus over to be crucified.

A weakened will can do such destructive damage.

Herod did have a fear of John and tried to protect John. We read of this in Mark Chapter 6. Can you hear him saying, “O, I ‘enjoyed’ hearing John this morning?” But it went no further!

Herod was never awakened to the consequences of the truth which John preached. A man has to be open to the Word of God or else he will seek to silence the Word of God. That has been my experience over the years.

Jesus was sent from Pilate to Herod, and then from Herod back to Pilate.

Jesus had nothing to say to Herod, but what is Jesus actually saying? You are too late – you should have listened to John?

Herod wanted salvation without repentance. Jesus was totally silent.

Herod’s life was filled with fear. He feared John the Baptist. He feared for his reputation, thinking of the dinner guests and the military personnel around him at that birthday party. He feared Herodias.

The one fear Herod knew little about was the fear of God.

Was Herod not strong in keeping his promise? That promise he made should never be kept. Promises which should never have been made should never be kept. That is why we have to be very careful regarding what we promise.

When you disobey and disregard and resist the Word of God, that very Word of God produces not just a hard heart but a weak will. Each refusal to respond positively to the Word of God leads to a weaker will.

The opposite is – “Each victory will help you, another to win.”

Share this and preach this and teach this and let these truths from the Word of God be proclaimed and published abroad, because people do need to know the truth and it is our task and responsibility to inform them.

What people do with the truth, and how they react and respond, is then up to them!