In comparison to many bible stories, the figure of Herod plays a large and complex role throughout the texts. While other characters may come and go amidst one category or another throughout the bible, it would seem that there is two Herods mentioned –– one in the books of Luke and Matthew, and another in the books of Mark and John. So why does the bible have two Herods? Let’s get a closer look.
According to most contemporary scholars, the two Herods mentioned in the bible are Herod the Great, and his son Herod Antipas. While there are many possible theories as to why they are listed twice, the most likely explanation is that both kings jointly hold the same name and office.
Herod the Great is mentioned in the book of Luke, specifically in 2nd chapter, 2nd verse. He is the father of John the Baptist and the ruler of Judea. The other Herod, referred to as Herod Antipas, is mentioned in the New Testament gospels among other books. He was the son of Herod the Great and the ruler of Galilee. It would appear that both kings held the same name and office, and as a result, both are mentioned in the bible.
There are many different theories as to why the bible mentions both kings. One possible explanation is that both kings were closely associated and shared many duties, which would explain why both are listed. Another theory is that the biblical authors wanted to emphasize the importance of the kings’ power, either as a warning or a statement of faith. Another possible explanation is that both kings were heavily involved in the religious and political turmoil that took place during Jesus’s day, and as a result, both deserved a place in scripture.
It should be noted that, while the bible mentions both Herods, the two rulers lived at different times and are not directly related. Herod the Great died in the year 4BC, while Herod Antipas died around AD 39. The two men were, however, closely related, as Herod the Great was the father of Herod Antipas’s mother.
In conclusion, it would seem that the bible mentions two Herods, who are closely related, but lived at different times. There are many possible reasons why the bible mentions both king, including to emphasize their power and importance, as well as their involvement in the religious and political turmoil during the time of Jesus.
Herod’s Contribution In Judea
Herod the Great is arguably one of the most important figures in Judea during the time of Jesus. This is partly due to his contributions to the region. As a Roman client king, he was responsible for increasing the size of the Judean population, as well as building many roads and fortifications throughout the region.
He was also responsible for many architectural advances, including the building of the famous temple of Jerusalem, which was later destroyed by the Romans. He also oversaw the expansion of cities such as Caesarea Maritima and the construction of Sebastos Harbor at Caesarea. His son, Herod Antipas, was arguably even more influential.
Herod Antipas was a relatively competent ruler who was invested in the religious and political life of the region. He was responsible for building a new palace in Jerusalem and extending the city’s walls. He also reformed the currency and was responsible for introducing many innovations in governance. He even attempted to impose social order in Jerusalem and attempted to project an air of fairness in his court.
Ultimately, it could be argued that both Herods had a great influence in the region, and it is important to remember that both kings held the same name and office. While they were not directly related, they were closely intertwined and their influence can still be seen in many aspects of modern day Judea.
Conflicts Between Judeans And Romans In Relation To Herods
Herods the Great and Antipas have an intertwined relationship with the governments of Rome. Both Herod the Great and Herod Antipas were Roman client kings, meaning that the Roman emperor would remain in power so long as the Herods kept Judea stable. Herod the Great’s reign was marked with infighting amongst members of the Herodian Dynasty and tension with the Jews, however his reign did remain largely peaceful.
His son, Herod Antipas, is best known for his relationship with the Roman Empire. His reign is marked with a complex relationship between his own ambitions, the Roman Empire and the Jews. He was heavily taxed by the Romans, something which sparked a great deal of opposition amongst the Jews. As a result, many opposed him, and his policies were largely seen by the Jewish population as oppressive and corrupt.
Ultimately it would appear that both Herods were inextricably linked to the Roman Empire, and both faced opposition from the Jews. This opposition can be seen as a minor spark for the Great Jewish Revolt, which would later lead to a full-scale rebellion against the Roman rulers and the eventual destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70.
The Role Of Herod In Jesus’ Story
Herod the Great and his son, Herod Antipas, also played an important role in Jesus’ story; Herod the Great is mentioned in the gospel of Luke, while Herod Antipas is mentioned numerous times throughout the New Testament. Herod the Great is best known for being the father of John the Baptist and his interactions with Jesus’ parents when Jesus was born. Herod Antipas, on the other hand, is best known for his interactions with Jesus when He is handed over by Judas Iscariot.
Elsewhere, Herod is known for his tumultuous relationship with the Jews, particularly after his efforts to placate the Jewish population backfired. He is also known for attempting to kill the baby Jesus; a story which has been immortalized in art, literature and film.
Ultimately, it would seem that Herod was an important, if often overlooked, character in the stories of Jesus and the New Testament. His influence can be seen throughout the bible, and he is an important part of many of Jesus’s miracles and interactions with his disciples.
His Influence After Death
While it can be argued that Herod the Great and Herod Antipas were two important figures in the bible, their influence did not end when they both died. It can be argued that, even after their deaths, their legacy has been a lasting one. After their deaths, the Herodian dynasty continued in power, ruling a weakened Jewish population. This legacy echoes in today’s modern Middle Eastern politics.
Furthermore, the presence of these kings, along with their contribution to the Judean region, created an environment for which Jesus may have been more successful. Without their support, it would have been much more difficult for Jesus to spread his message. Furthermore, both Herod the Great and Herod Antipas were able to keep the region largely peaceful –– something which is reflected in the stories in the New Testament.
Ultimately, it would seem that the two Herods of the bible, Herod the Great and Herod Antipas, were important players in the bible, both in their own right and in relation to each other. Their influence can be seen in many aspects of Jesus’s story, and their legacies continue to this day.