Worship Service 15 July 2018
Delivered By
Pastor Doug Groen and LaVerne Wiginton Accompanist
Delivered On
July 15, 2018 at 10:00 AM
Central Passage
Mark 6:14-29

Mark 6:14-29 New International Reader's Version (NIRV)

John the Baptist’s Head Is Cut Off

14 King Herod heard about this. Jesus’ name had become well known. Some were saying, “John the Baptist has been raised from the dead! That is why he has the power to do miracles.”

15 Others said, “He is Elijah.”

Still others claimed, “He is a prophet. He is like one of the prophets of long ago.”

16 But when Herod heard this, he said, “I had John’s head cut off. And now he has been raised from the dead!”

17 In fact, it was Herod himself who had given orders to arrest John. He had him tied up and put in prison. He did this because of Herodias. She was the wife of Herod’s brother Philip. But now Herod was married to her. 18 John had been saying to Herod, “It is against the Law for you to be married to your brother’s wife.” 19 Herodias couldn’t forgive John for saying that. She wanted to kill him. But she could not, 20 because Herod was afraid of John. So he kept John safe. Herod knew John was a holy man who did what was right. When Herod heard him, he was very puzzled. But he liked to listen to John.

21 Finally the right time came. Herod gave a banquet on his birthday. He invited his high officials and military leaders. He also invited the most important men in Galilee. 22 Then the daughter of Herodias came in and danced. She pleased Herod and his dinner guests.

The king said to the girl, “Ask me for anything you want. I’ll give it to you.” 23 And he gave her his promise. He said to her, “Anything you ask for I will give you. I’ll give you up to half my kingdom.”

24 She went out and said to her mother, “What should I ask for?”

“The head of John the Baptist,” she answered.

25 At once the girl hurried to ask the king. She said, “I want you to give me the head of John the Baptist on a big plate right now.”

26 The king was very upset. But he thought about his promise and his dinner guests. So he did not want to say no to the girl. 27 He sent a man right away to bring John’s head. The man went to the prison and cut off John’s head. 28 He brought it back on a big plate. He gave it to the girl, and she gave it to her mother. 29 John’s disciples heard about this. So they came and took his body. Then they placed it in a tomb.


Pastor;s Summary of Mark 6:14-29

Jesus' disciples have gone out, preached repentance, cast out demons, and cured many sick people but, while the crowds mill round him, the authorities are beginning to reject him. Some people think he is John the Baptist (now dead) working powers, miracles. But others see Jesus' actions as sign of the end of the era: that he is "Elijah" (who was taken up to heaven, 2 Kings 2:11, and was expected to return at Judgement Day, Malachi 4:5), or a prophetic figure, or a prophet like Moses (promised in Sinai)-but not that he is the Messiah, also expected at that time. Herod's rection is: Not John back again! (v. 16)

Mark inserts a flashback to the story of John the Baptist to tell what discipleship may cost; anticipate Jesus' fate, and that of some disciples. Herod Antipas, Tetrarch of Galilee, has had John arrested (v. 17) because he had denounced Herod for marrying his brother's wife, illegal per Leviticus 18:16; 20-21. Even so, because he found John fascinating ("liked to listen to him", and recognized his worthiness, he did not wish him dead. But Herodias "wanted to kill him" (v. 19). The story of her victory is horrifying tale. V 29 foreshadows Jesus' buried in 15:45-46, but there his disciples desert him.