He Lost His Head

January 15, 2022 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions

By Cynthia Ruchti –

“I promise it won’t hurt.”

“I’ll be there on time. I promise.”

I heard it again the other day. A dad promised his young son something not within his power to control. “I promise we’ll find your bike.”

He can promise they’ll try as hard as they can to find it. But no dad can truthfully promise the bike will be found.

King Herod feared John the Baptist. He was confused and convicted by John’s teaching, but the Bible tells us the king liked to listen to him.

John the Baptist was a truth-teller who plainly told Herod he was in an adulterous affair with Herodius, his brother’s wife. Herod had John arrested but gave him preferential treatment because he understood John was a righteous, holy man.

But Herod made a foolish promise for a foolish reason. He liked the way Herodius’ daughter danced. He promised her anything she wanted.

The girl, egged on by her hateful mother, asked for the head of John the Baptist on a platter. “The king was greatly distressed, but because of his oaths and his dinner guests, he did not want to refuse her.” (Mark 6:26 NIV)

Herod knew the right thing to do. But he caved to the wrong thing because he’d made a rash, unwise promise. And John the Baptist lost his head because of it.

What kind of trouble can parents cause when they promise something to please a child, but can’t deliver on the promise? We can promise we’ll do our best. We can promise the pain is survivable and temporary. We can promise we’ll try. But only God’s promises are unfailingly reliable, because He has the power to control the outcome.

PRAYER: Lord, keep me from making ridiculous promises, and keep me faithful to my Christ-created promises to You.

“For no matter how many promises God has made, they are ‘yes’ in Christ.”( II Corinthians 1:20 NIV)

About Cynthia Ruchti

Cynthia Ruchti tells stories of Hope-that-glows-in-the-dark through her novels and novellas, devotion collections, speaking, teaching, and a history of 33 years as a radio writer/producer. Her books have been recognized by RT Reviewers’ Choice, Retailers’ Choice, Family Fiction Readers’Choice, and other honors. Her novel When the Morning Glory Blooms (Abingdon Press Fiction) releases April 1, 2013. A nonfiction project—Ragged Hope: Surviving the Fallout of Other People’s Choices—releases July 2013 from Abingdon Press Christian Living. www.cynthiaruchti.com
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One Response to “He Lost His Head”
  1. Patricia Linson says:

    Wow! Great truth. An adult fails a child when he or she doesn’t keep his or her word. That’s child trust becomes broken because the child doesn’t feel love, but feels betrayed. Adults should never promise something they can’t do.

    Even more important is the representation of the Truth, God is trustworthy. His promises are reliable because He always keeps them.

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