Why Jesus Crossed The Road

(Based on the book by Bruce Main, 2010)

Sunday, Aug 20, 2023


Part I: Why Jesus Crossed the Road: Love. Grace. Mercy…

Part II: Roadblocks to Road Crossing: Fear. Indifference. Misguided Theology and Ideas.

Part III: Jesus’ Crossings: The Poor. Race. Spiritual Exclusivity. Enemies. Cultural. Worldview: Romans. Jews. Children. Women. Tax Collectors. Sinners. Lepers. The Sick. Scribes. Pharisees.


A.     The Road to the Romans

1.      My trip to Italy, Rome, Roma (June 5-17, 2023).


2.      To be covered: Caesar. Herod. Centurion. Taxes. Pilate. Romans. Crucifixion. Cross. Crucifixion of Jesus.


3.      Herod the Great: David A DeSilva. An Introduction to the New Testament, p. 65., R.H. Barrow (1949)

     The last few years of Herod’s thirty-three-year reign were plagued by suspicion and intrigue among his successive wives and their several sons. During his last years he executed three of his own sons on suspicion of conspiracy and reduced another (Herod Philip, Herodias’s first husband) to private life. Someone who would thus ravage his own house would have no scruples about killing a few dozen children in Bethlehem if he suspected a pretender to the throne (Mt. 2:16-18).

    In 4 B.C.E. Herod died, and his kingdom was divided between three surviving sons. Although the Judeans petitioned Rome to restore the temple hierocracy (that is, internal rule by the high priest rather than the family of Herod) Augustus essentially upheld Herod’s will. Archelaus became ethnarch of Judea, Samaria and Idumea (4 B.C.E. - 6 C.E.); Herod Antipas became tetrarch of Galilee and Perea (4 B.C.E. – 39 C.E.); and Philip became tetrarch of Iturea and Trachonitis (4 B.C.E. – 34 C.E.). Archelaus was a brutal ruler (see the comments about Archelaus’ jurisdiction in Mt. 2:22). Quelling disturbances with excessive violence. His policy only exacerbated unrest, culminating in a joint delegation of Judeans and Samaritans to Rome to request his removal. Augustus deposed Archelaus and exiled him to Gaul (modern France). Judea and Samaria became a Roman province administered by prefects until the outbreak of the Jewish Revolt in 66 C.E. (with a brief return to a Jewish king from 41 – 44 C.E.).


Table 2.4 Herod and His Major Heirs

·         Antipater (d. 43 B.C.E.) father of Herod the Great

·         Herod the Great (king of Judea, 37 – 4 B.C.E.)

·         Archelaus (ethnarch of Judea, 4 B.C.E. – 6 C.E.)

·         Herod Antipas (tetrarch or Galilee and Perea, 4 B.C.E. – 39 C.E.), son of Herod the Great by Malthace and second husband of Herodias

·         Philip (tetrarch of Ituraea and Trachonitis, 4 B.C.E. – 33 C.E.), son of Herod the Great by Cleopatra

·         Herod Philip (private citizen), son of Herod the Great by Mariamne II, half-brother to Herod Antipas, Herodias’ first husband, father of Salome.

·         Herod Agrippa I (king of Judea, 41 – 44), grandson of Herod the Great through Mariamne I (brother-in-law to Herod Antipas through his sister, Herodias)

·         Herod Agrippa II (ethnarch of Chalcis and various regions north of Judea after 50 C.E.), son of Agrippa I, husband to Berenice (Acts 25:13)



4.      In Scripture – Herod the Great (37 – 4 BC)

a.       Luke 1:5-13 … John the Baptist, Zechariah and Elizabeth

b.      Matthew 2:1-12, Herod and the Magi, Child Jesus

c.       Matthew 2: 13 – 23, Herod and the Child Jesus


5.      Herod’s Soon – Archelaus – Matthew 2:21-23