Scripture for Friday after the Second Sunday in Lent 2013

9 Herodias had a grudge against him and wanted to put him to death and could not do so; 20 for Herod was afraid of John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and he kept him safe. And when he heard him, he was very perplexed; but he used to enjoy listening to him. 21 A strategic day came when Herod on his birthday gave a banquet for his lords and military commanders and the leading men of Galilee; 22 and when the daughter of Herodias herself came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his dinner guests; and the king said to the girl, “Ask me for whatever you want and I will give it to you.” 23 And he swore to her, “Whatever you ask of me, I will give it to you; up to half of my kingdom.” 24 And she went out and said to her mother, “What shall I ask for?” And she said, “The head of John the Baptist.” 25 Immediately she came in a hurry to the king and asked, saying, “I want you to give me at once the head of John the Baptist on a platter.” 26 And although the king was very sorry, yet because of his oaths and because of his dinner guests, he was unwilling to refuse her. 27 Immediately the king sent an executioner and commanded him to bring back his head. And he went and had him beheaded in the prison, 28 and brought his head on a platter, and gave it to the girl; and the girl gave it to her mother. ~ Mark 6:19-28 (NASB)

Heavenly Father, Herod knew that John was a righteous man and didn’t plan to put him to death. However, when he foolishly promised Herodias’ daughter anything she wanted as a reward for her dancing, he wasn’t strong enough to admit his error and let John live. He killed another human being just to avoid being embarrassed or humiliated. That seems incredible, but I have said or done things I shouldn’t for the same reason. Even though I’ve never killed anyone, in Your holy eyes, sin is sin—a lie is as evil as murder. Empower me by the Holy Spirit to put righteousness before self and honor You with my life. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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