“He (Herod) said to his servants, ‘This has to be John the Baptizer come back from the dead. That’s why he’s able to work miracles!’” Matthew 14:2
Harod, the regional ruler of Israel, knew John the Baptist well. During one of his drunken birthday parties, he granted the daughter of his brother Philip anything she wanted. After being coached by her mother, Herodias, she ordered John’s head to be presented to her on a platter to satisfy her mother, who despised John for implicating Herodias and Herod for having an affair.
When Jesus of Nazareth began his ministry in Galilee, Herod feared John had come back in the form of this man who worked miracles to haunt him. Apparently, the vision of John the Baptizer’s head on a platter continued to haunt him, and he began to plot Jesus’ death.
It’s hard to believe God orchestrated this whole tragic ordeal with the end in mind–salvation and eternal life for all the sinners of the world–including Herod and Herodias–should they ask for forgiveness and seek a new life in Christ.
Dear God, thank you for John the Baptist who paved the way for Jesus, who paved the way for eternal life in your kingdom. Amen.