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Herodias; Wife of Herod Antipas

We encounter Herodias in the Bible in Matthew 14:3-12, Mark 6:14-24 and Luke 3:19,20. Her name Herodias is the female form of Herod. Herod was the name given to the Roman political rulers during the time of Christ. It was under the cruel orders of the Herods that all boy children under two years were to be killed at the birth of Jesus. It was under their orders that Jesus and His disciples were punished and persecuted.

The marriages involving Herodias:

Herodias married her own relatives. This is incest .It is condemned by God in Lev. 18:6-17. In this Bible passage, God clearly spells out the ‘Do Nots’ in marriage between people of one family, whether they are family by blood or by marriage;fathers and daughters, daughters and uncles, step brothers and cousins, sons and their fathers’ wives.This passage ends with the words…”they are close relatives, and this would be a wicked act.” In her first marriage, Herodias was married by Phillip. He  was the brother of Herod Antipas, the Roman ruler of the region of Judea. Herodias and Philip had one daughter. Her name was Salome. Herod Antipas divorced his first wife and married and  installed Herodias in the palace. She came with her daughter Salome. Matt.14:6-8. It was in the days of John the Baptist. Though he was not a Jew, Herod Antipas loved to listen to the teachings of John the Baptist and would ask for him to come and teach him. In Mark 6:20 it is recorded that “Herod feared John,knowing him that he was a just and holy man..” But Herod did not like it when John said to him, Mark 6:18 “ It is unlawful for you to have your brother’s wife”. He had John thrown into jail for this rebuke. His wife Herodias was furious too and “held it against him and wanted to kill him” Mark 6:19. She eventually gets to fulfill her wicked desire to kill John the Baptist during Herod’s birthday. When her daughter Salome dances before Herod and his guests, Herod asks her to name whatever she would like as a gift.

Herodias, her mother, wickedly advised her to ask  for the head of John the Baptist on a platter. Mark 6:21- 28, records these events. V.28….. “And brought the head on a platter, and gave it to the girl; and the girl gave it to her mother”.

Motherhood tips from Herodias:

There are no motherhood tips from Herodias. There is nothing in her character and conduct that a Christian mother can copy. Herodias is like the woman described in Prov.5:3-4...”she is as bitter as poison,as dangerous as a double-edged sword”.

Lessons that we can learn from Herodias:

We can learn to turn away from all wickedness and instead to walk and conduct ourselves as mothers, in a way that is honorable in the eyes of our children and will bring glory to God. 1 Peter 3:4 let us be “known by the beauty that comes from within”. As mothers, unlike Herodias, we should teach our children in the way of the Lord. Deut.6:6-7 “And these words that I command you today….you shall teach them diligently to your children”. We should play our role in rebuking and correcting wrong doing Prov.22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go and he will not depart from it”. Like the woman in Proverbs 31, we should set an example in diligence in our work and in our service to God.Teaching our children in wisdom Prov.31:26. Watching over the ways of our household, v.27. By our conduct and example ,the word of God promises that, …”her children will rise up and call her blessed. Her husband also, he praises her”.

WRITTEN BY sis Anne Richard