Skip to comments.King Herod is Undergoing an Odd Reinvention
Posted on 04/12/2013 7:26:15 AM PDT by marshmallow
Curators of a blockbuster exhibition have sought to sanitise his reputation
Herod has become a new Jewish super-hero in Jerusalem. This elevation, which has come about since the unearthing of his tomb in 2007, comes as a shock for most Christians. Most of us are horrified by Matthews account in the New Testament, which tells how this tyrannical king, fearful of a competitor after the birth of Jesus, ordered the Massacre of the Innocents. A large number of Jews have reviled him for other reasons for collaborating with the Romans and the murder of his Jewish wife, Marianne, his two half-Jewish sons, plus a great many rabbis.
Resentment against him was also caused by this kings ancestry. According to one synagogue-attending friend: Herod was Arab by descent. His mother was a Nabatean from Petra, now part of Jordan. His father was from southern Palestine, an Edomite who converted to Judaism.
But the new appreciation of Herod is clear to see. First, plans were announced last January for a monumental replica of his tomb at Herodium, the arid hilltop in the West Bank, where he had been buried in 4 BC. This proposed 75ft high construction, part of the Israeli Prime Ministers Office of National Heritage Sites Project, would be as lofty as an eight-storey building and visible from Jerusalem. Objections are presently being assessed.
Second, the exhibition Herod the Great: The Kings Final Journey at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem is drawing such crowds that I had to queue on the two occasions I visited it. The quarter of an acre of fascinating exhibits includes finds from Jerusalem, Herodium and Jericho, including the masonry and sarcophagus thought to have contained the royal body. There are some 30 tons of material and 250 artefacts from Herodium alone, plus much from Jericho.....
(Excerpt) Read more at catholicherald.co.uk ...
The killing of innocent babies by Herod is considered a great accomplishment by today’s liberals.
He’s a fascinating despot, but he was a vile guy, and I don’t know of any Israelis who like him -— other than as a significant part of out history.
He was a fake convert.
He persecuted faithful Jews.
He was a puppet of Rome at times and then a stupid opposer at others.
He was a murderer.
In fact, on one point Jewish people and Christians of 2,000 years ago agreed was he was an animal for his murder of John, called “John the Baptist” by Christians, and was punished by this murder by the defeat of his armies.
Arise, shine; for Thy light has come. Isaiah 60:1
The “Herod” in Acts 12 is Herod Agrippa, the grandson of Herod the Great.
That would be Herod Antipas, tetrarch of Galilee, son of King Herod the Great. There are several "Herods" mentioned in the NT, all from the same family, all bad guys.
Different Herod, but point well taken.
Sorry to pile on. Nevermind.
Ah, as you could guess, my knowledge of Christianity is exceedingly weak, except for I can spot American Baptist Tourists in wine country because they drink when touring alone/with their family and don’t drink when in packs.
As to the baby killing thing, I believe it is a kings right to decide what to do with his bodies. /sarcasm
....Yet he was called “great”. Go figure.
Bible Archaeology Review magazine has a nice treatment of Ehud Netzer’s discovery of Harod’s tomb at Herodium. Nov 14, 2011 issue:
More BAR articles:
Google Maps location of Herodium / Herodyon:
Better to be Herod’s pig than his subject, other than that he was a great guy.
Sounds like today's LIBERALS...
Today's Herrod is King Obamo the Marxist
Today's Massacre of Innocents is ABORTION... which killed more than Herrod did!!
Wrong! Relative to what we have Herod was great.
Franco Zeffirelli’s depiction of the Killing of the Innocents still brings tears to my eyes. The scene with the Palace Soldier chasing the mother carrying her baby son is horrifying.
Say what you want about Herod there’s still ONLY 2 “Greats” in the bible, Herod and Cyrus...
...and that’s the way it is.
The media wouldn't even report it, unless he used an "assault weapon" to do it.
In all fairness, the historical accounts of Herod are very complex, and very mixed as far as “good” or “bad” for Israel. This is not unexpected, as he reigned for a very long time, by the standards of the time.
If you read his biography, there are any number of intrigues, alliances and animosities, and the histories of the period are anything but accurate, filled with obvious bias and character assassination, all around.
And remember, this was a very small place in a very large empire. Christianity was formative, so few at the time even took notice of it, as such.
Even a profound incident, such as the slaughter of the innocents, based on the population at the time, was likely to have been 20 or fewer total babies. This at a time when wholesale butchery ordered by kings was not uncommon.
In any event, it will be interesting to all to see what the archaeologists discover.
Today’s Demoncrat party is moving towards his accomplishment of port-birth abortion in the 4th, 5th, 6th, and further trimesters!
Although today’s numbers dwarf Herod’s murders.
The ancient Greek pun is actually better his pig than his son (he killed most of his sons).
BTW—the pun was first made by Caesar Augustus upon hearing that Herod had executed another of his sons.
What am I missing here? If this Herod was the same King Herod who was responsible for the slaughter of the Holy Innocents, how could he have been buried 4 years before the birth of Christ? It seems to me that he would have had to have died some time in AD? Maybe I’m just confused about the events, and if so, I’d hope you could clear it up for me. Perhaps the tomb that was uncovered was that of his father, who was also a Herod.
How do you expect me to know that? It happened before I was born.
You can't call him a fake convert as he didn't convert but was born into Judaism. Arguably, of course, he was not a believing Jew by any means
Even if you had been alive at the time, unless you knew Greek the precise phrasing wasn’t that funny. Of course, when you’re Caesar, everyone laughs at your jokes anyway, so it wouldn’t really have mattered at the time.
“First, plans were announced last January for a monumental replica of his tomb at Herodium, the arid hilltop in the West Bank, where he had been buried in 4 BC. This proposed 75ft high construction, part of the Israeli Prime Ministers Office of National Heritage Sites Project, would be as lofty as an eight-storey building and visible from Jerusalem.”
In the name of ecumenism and interreligious dialogue, I’m pretty sure Rome will send a representative. Perhaps they’ll pull the apostate, Cardinal Kasper, out of retirement. After all, Kasper questions the Resurrection of Christ.
Not sure where you are getting I said he was an arab.
Not a Jew, by all reliable accounts.
But do note that the Western Wall is part of the temple complex that Herod rebuilt. He put up an external show of piety in order to cement his position as King of the Jews (it didn't seem to work then or now...)
It is kind of ironic that the Maccabbees forcibly converted the Idumeans and then one of the Idumeans overthrew the Maccabees
It's also ironic that the Idumeans as a nation died in the defence of Jerusalem in 69 AD
He did build some nice buildings, like all really good dictators.
Herod, Stalin, Hitler, FDR, Obama like government buildings.
Of course, like most dictators, he was a Keneysian (sp?) government spender as his prefered form of economic control. Herod taxed hard and gave special contracts to favorable crafts (literally trade unions of the day).
Re: the Maccabeans, they started off awesome and then went to Hell. People are like that, absent G-d. Even Jews. Or perhaps, especially Jews.
We Jews, as a people, have a dangerous vacuum that is designed to be filled with G-d, and when we reject it, we go bad in the most spectacular ways, probably worse that any people in the world.*
* I opined that in a Chabad Center, and they agreed with me. I opined that in a JCC and was accused of “being a f-—ing Israeli.”
i would challenge that "probably worse" -- there were bad Jews, but in the past 200 I can only think of Trotsky (Marx wasn't a Jew -- he was only genetically on his father's side and his father had converted) and Trotsky, for all the evil that he did in co-opting the Tsarist army to the Bolshevik cause, was not a monster in the same mold as Stalin...