Herod – The Original Christmas Grinch

“Matthew 2:1 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,”

We open the Christmas narrative in the Matthew 2, and are greeted with one of the most despicable characters of the New Testament: Herod the King. He had risen to power through corruption and ruthlessness. Herod also has the distinction of being the original Grinch of Christmas! What earns him this dubious title?

He was Obliviously Self-Absorbed (2:2)

The most interesting, astronomical event of the millennium had occurred and Herod, like most everyone else, had been too self-absorbed in their own plans and self-importance to even notice. They missed the birth of Christ the King!

He was Troubled with Truth (2:3)

Everyone else who heard the triumphant truth that the Saviour had come was absolutely but not Herod. He was troubled at this truth. He had his agenda and wasn’t interested in God’s purpose or plans.

He was Ignorant of Scripture (2:4)

He had heard that Christ would come, that was for sure. But beyond a general vague idea of this Herod had zero interest in getting into the Bible for himself and learning God’s truth. He spent 40 years building and beautifying the temple of God, yet he never applied himself to listen to the teaching of the Word of God.

He was Hypocritical in his Interest in Christ (2:7-8)

Faking a keen interest in Christ, Herod sent the wisemen to find this King of the Jews. Yet all this was just a hypocritical show. If he was interested in the real King of Jews, he would have gone himself. Herod was only interested in protecting his power and wealth.

He was Wicked in his Scheming (2:16)

In what could only be grasped as the one of the most wicked and cruel acts of history, Herod ordered all the young babies under two years old to be ruthlessly murdered. The heartlessness of Herod can barely be comprehended by a rational and caring person.

Herod was a Grinch. A self-absorbed and self-centered jerk with no interest in God. Yet, he like everyone else has or will, died one day and went into eternity. One day he will stand before the real King of Israel, Jesus, and give an account for his dastardly deeds.

Bro. Robert Pophal

Rose Park Baptist Church

Holland, Michigan