November 17, 2021 – Mark 6: 6-13 – Power and Pride

Today we are reading from Mark 6: 14-29:

14 King Herod heard of it, for Jesus’ name had become known. Some were saying, “John the baptizer has been raised from the dead; and for this reason these powers are at work in him.” 15 But others said, “It is Elijah.” And others said, “It is a prophet, like one of the prophets of old.” 16 But when Herod heard of it, he said, “John, whom I beheaded, has been raised.”

17 For Herod himself had sent men who arrested John, bound him, and put him in prison on account of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, because Herod had married her. 18 For John had been telling Herod, “It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.” 19 And Herodias had a grudge against him, and wanted to kill him. But she could not, 20 for Herod feared John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and he protected him. When he heard him, he was greatly perplexed; and yet he liked to listen to him. 21 But an opportunity came when Herod on his birthday gave a banquet for his courtiers and officers and for the leaders of Galilee. 22 When his daughter Herodias came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his guests; and the king said to the girl, “Ask me for whatever you wish, and I will give it.” 23 And he solemnly swore to her, “Whatever you ask me, I will give you, even half of my kingdom.” 24 She went out and said to her mother, “What should I ask for?” She replied, “The head of John the baptizer.” 25 Immediately she rushed back to the king and requested, “I want you to give me at once the head of John the Baptist on a platter.” 26 The king was deeply grieved; yet out of regard for his oaths and for the guests, he did not want to refuse her. 27 Immediately the king sent a soldier of the guard with orders to bring John’s head. He went and beheaded him in the prison, 28 brought his head on a platter, and gave it to the girl. Then the girl gave it to her mother. 29 When his disciples heard about it, they came and took his body, and laid it in a tomb.

One of the things we see get folks in trouble, a lot in scripture and in real life is power and pride. When someone gets in a position of power, when no one can correct them, or advise them, or coach them, they get in trouble. 

And likewise, another danger is pride. When we become too proud to admit a mistake, or ask for forgiveness, or confess that we were wrong, then reconciliation becomes impossible.  

We see this with Herod today.  Now, this was not Herod the Great, the king who was king when Jesus was born. This was his son. But, like his dad, he wasn’t a great guy. He didn’t like John, because John, a prophet, called him out. And as a king, you don’t really like people getting up in your business.  But John did. 

Herod didn’t want to kill him. He felt sorry. But his pride was too great.  His power was too great.  And because of that, because of these two things, a good man was killed.  

Today, what does our pride do to us?  What does our power do to us?  Are we humble enough to admit a mistake?  Are we humble enough to right a wrong?  Are we humble enough to repent?  

The Bible says the pride goes before the fall. That’s what happens today.  May we not make the same mistake.  

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