S – John the Baptist Beheaded: “The king was distressed, but because of his oaths and his dinner guests, he ordered that her requests be granted, and had John the Baptist beheaded in prison.”
O – Herod Antipus was one of three Palestinian rulers. His half-brother, Philip, was another Palestinian ruler. Philip’s wife, Herodias, left Philip to live with Herod Antipus. John the Baptist condemned the two of them for living immorally, so king Herod Antipus had John thrown in prison. While having a party, Herod was impressed by a young dancer, Herodias’ daughter, and he promised an oath to give her whatever she asked for. She asked Herod for John the Baptist’s head on a platter during the party. Herod didn’t want to kill John, but because of his oath, and not wanting to be embarrassed in front of his guests, he agreed and ordered John’s death and decapitation.
A – Although Herod didn’t want to kill John, he gave the order so he wouldn’t be embarrassed in front of his guests. How easy is it to give in to the crowd and let ourselves be pressured into doing wrong? Don’t get into a situation where it will be embarrassing to do what is right. Determine to do what is right, no matter how embarrassing and painful it may be.
P – Dear Lord, I often find myself saying things or laughing at things I know are wrong, but I either don’t want to embarrass the person saying them or embarrass myself. Please help me to always agree with you and your Word and not with this world. Remove judgements and biases from my heart and teach me to see as you do. Help me to go from “I-It” mentality to an “I-THOU” heart. Remembering and treating ALL PEOPLE as if they were made in your image, which they were. In Jesus’ name, Amen.