After Jesus was born in Bethlehem village, Judah territory— this was during Herod’s kingship—a band of scholars arrived in Jerusalem from the East. They asked around, “Where can we find and pay homage to the newborn King of the Jews? We observed a star in the eastern sky that signaled his birth. We’re on pilgrimage to worship him. “When word of their inquiry got to Herod, he was terrified… Matthew 2:1-4 The Msg
King Herod was a little paranoid, to say the least. His reaction to the news that a new king was born was defensiveness, fear and eventually even murder. He asked his advisors what the prophecy said about where the little one would be born, but maybe he should have asked them more about the prophecies. He would have heard how this baby would grow to be the Messiah, to save people from their sins and bring deliverance. It was going to be a really good thing, not a threat. Jesus was not going to grow up and organize a coup to overthrow Herod. If Herod only knew, the new king Jesus could have saved him, too.
Some people may look at Christians and think we’re a silly bunch allowing Jesus to be Lord of our lives, allowing someone else to be in control, living within boundaries set by God. If they only knew that God’s boundaries are set in love, that He is in control anyway so we might as well acknowledge that, and having Him lead gives us hope and purpose. Some think of God as a dictator or puppet-master and resist Him. Some feel threatened when they’re given the opportunity to join God’s family. If they only knew! God is for them, not against them.
So, what do you think? With God on our side like this, how can we lose? If God didn’t hesitate to put everything on the line for us, embracing our condition and exposing himself to the worst by sending his own Son, is there anything else he wouldn’t gladly and freely do for us? And who would dare tangle with God by messing with one of God’s chosen? Who would dare even to point a finger? The One who died for us—who was raised to life for us!—is in the presence of God at this very moment sticking up for us. Do you think anyone is going to be able to drive a wedge between us and Christ’s love for us? Romans 8:31-38 The Msg