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Lethal Lust

John the Baptist (see The Prophets: John The Baptist) was one the most righteous servants of God that ever lived. We know that because Jesus Christ testified to it Himself.

"11:11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist..." (Matthew 11:11 KJV)

The purpose of John's ministry was to "prepare the way" for the first coming of The Messiah - to preach that everyone must repent in order to be worthy of the salvation that the Savior will provide to the repentant, in their due time (see Resurrections and Could Christ Return Tonight?), because the LORD is going to burn those who arrogantly refuse to repent, in their due time (see The Lake Of Fire Into An Ocean Of Fire - When?).

"3:5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan [see The Jordan River and Beyond Jordan], 3:6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.

3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism [see also The Rebaptism Controversy], he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 3:8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance: 3:9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. 3:10 And now also the ax is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

3:11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire [see Baptism Of Fire]: 3:12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire." (Matthew 3:5-12 KJV)

"Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning"

John's God-given warning knew no bounds. As stated above, John warned the Pharisees and Sadducees to repent - men who, as the assumed religious authorities of the nation (see The Origin Of The Essenes, Sadducees And Pharisees), should not have had to be told to do what they should have already been doing, and teaching, themselves. But they had become men driven by the love of lust, rather than the love of Truth. They assassinated the Messiah for that reason, as He prophesied that they would do.

Herodias

"8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. 8:45 And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not." (John 8:44-45 KJV)

It's certain that they would have killed John before long, just they killed Jesus Christ - but someone else, an adulteress, got John killed before them. John was arrested and thrown in prison for rebuking Herod's incestuous and adulterous relationship with his niece Herodias.

"14:3 For Herod had laid hold on John, and bound him, and put him in prison for Herodias' sake, his brother Philip's wife.

14:4 For John said unto him, It is not lawful for thee to have her." (Matthew 14:3-4 KJV)

Herodias was the granddaughter of Herod the Great (who tried to have Jesus Christ killed as an infant in Bethlehem; see The Herods). She was first married to her uncle Herod II (a son of Herod the Great), but she later fell in lust with her brother-in-law Herod Antipas, her husband/uncle's brother, which meant that he, like her first "husband," was also her uncle. Herodias and Herod Antipas divorced their spouses and were married, thereby making Herodias the "wife" of two of her uncles. It was for that lust-driven adultery and incest that John, according to the Law of God, rightfully and publicly rebuked both of them - one a princess of the "royal" Herod line, the other the reigning royal governor of Galilee.

An excerpt from the Encyclopedia Britannica, a secular encyclopedia of history that confirms the historic account of the Holy Bible:

"Herodias (d. after AD 39), wife of Herod Antipas, tetrarch (ruler appointed by Rome) of Galilee, in northern Palestine, from 4 BC to AD 39; she conspired to arrange the execution of John the Baptist. Her marriage to Herod Antipas (himself divorced), after her divorce from his half brother Herod Philip was censured by John as a transgression of Mosaic Law."

For political reasons, Herod did not intend to kill John, "he would have put him to death, he feared the multitude."

"14:5 And when he would have put him to death, he feared the multitude, because they counted him as a prophet." (Matthew 14:5 KJV)

Herodias, on the other hand, was not satisfied with silencing John by locking him in a dungeon. She had murder on her lustful mind. The opportunity came at Herod's birthday party, when Herodias had her dancing daughter ask for John to be beheaded after the "infatuated" (and likely intoxicated - it was after all, his "birthday party") Herod made a rash promise to her. He apparently had intentions for the girl because he had very little problem breaking his word to everyone else.

"14:6 But when Herod's birthday was kept, the daughter of Herodias danced before them, and pleased Herod.

14:7 Whereupon he promised with an oath to give her whatsoever she would ask."

14:8 And she, being before instructed of her mother, said, Give me here John Baptist's head in a charger. (Matthew 14:6-8 KJV)

As the "topping on the cake" of her murderous arrogance, she asked for John's head to be delivered to her on one of the birthday party serving trays.

"14:9 And the king was sorry: nevertheless for the oath's sake, and them which sat with him at meat, he commanded it to be given her.

14:10 And he sent, and beheaded John in the prison.

14:11 And his head was brought in a charger, and given to the damsel: and she brought it to her mother." (Matthew 14:9-11 KJV)

The Holy Bible does not record what later became of Herodias, however the Encyclopedia Britannica does:

"Herodias also urged her husband to attempt to discredit her brother Herod Agrippa I, who had recently received the tetrarchy of Batanaea and Trachonitis, east of the Sea of Galilee. Their efforts antagonized the emperor Caligula, however, and they were banished in AD 39."

Fact Finder: How long was the ministry of John the Baptist? Why did people call him "Rabbi"?
See How Long Was John's Ministry? and Rabbi John


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