Putting God's Word into Practice…

Mark 6:7-29-Devil with a Blue Dress On

Herodias must have been some special lady, a prized sister-in-law in order for King Herod to take her from his brother and make her his wife.  Seeing as John the Baptist’s purpose for living was to plead with people to repent and to prepare their hearts for the coming of Jesus; he couldn’t very well overlook the king.  So starting at the top, John confronts the happy couple on their law-breaking.  As most men would, King Herod takes action having John bound and held in prison.  And as most women would, Herodias holds a grudge.  She harbors bitterness to the point of fantasizing over John’s death.


Herodias didn’t realize the effect that her bitterness was having on her daughter, or the powerful influence of a mother.  With total love and respect, I can say that I’ve seen this in my own life as a daughter.  How my mom felt about people transferred to me.  When I overheard a negative (or positive) opinion of someone else it would stay in the recesses of my mind so that every time I saw that person her thoughts were the first ones to pop into my mind.  I’m sure that my sons have the same experience when I vocalize my critical spirit or dislike for someone’s actions.  (Probably after hearing John–and God’s–thoughts on her marriage to Herod, every time she looked at Herod those words of John rang in her ears, too.)

Unchecked bitterness leads us to devalue human life.  It causes us to think evil thoughts and plot evil plans.  It can even allow us to bring other people into our sin and cause their fall.  When Herodias’ daughter danced at King Herod’s party, the men were pleased.  King Herod offered to give the girl anything she wanted even up to half his kingdom.  She went straight to her mother for advise.    This was just the opening Herodias needed.  She told her daughter (imagine this) to ask for the head of John the Baptist on a platter!  Talk about dysfunctional family!  The girl goes “with haste” to the king and gives her request.  He, exceedingly sorrowful, follows through with his promise.  A plate with a man’s head is presented to the daughter (can you say “traumatized for life!”) and she takes it to her mother.

This may seem excessive and not applicable, but there are deep truths here.  

  1. I am an influential women.  I have been entrusted with the hearts of two sons.  How I feel about others can positively or negatively impact the next generation.  
  2. All people are made in God’s image, and I am called to love them and value life because God is the life-giver.
  3. Proverbs 17:19a says, “Whoever loves transgression loves strife.” When someone points out an area of sin in my life, I need to humbly repent and forsake it.
  4. All grudges are unacceptable and need to be caught and killed immediately.  They are capable of leading me to far worse sins.
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