King Herod the Great

Matthew 2:16-18. Herod the Great becomes the ruler of Israel.

He ruled Judea, Samaria and Galilee, most of what is often incorrectly called Palestine today. He died in 4BC.

Herod built MASADA as his summer palace.

The Roman Senate had appointed Herod, an Idumean, as king of Judea in 37BC. He died during 4BC

In Greek Herod means: heroic.

Background Reading:

Herod’s Plot to kill Jesus

2:16 Herod flew into a rage when he learned that he had been tricked by the wise men, so he ordered the execution of all the male children in Bethlehem and all its neighboring regions, who were two years old and younger, according to the time that he had determined from the wise men. 17 Then what was declared by the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled when he said,

18 “A voice was heard in Ramah:
wailing and great mourning.
Rachel was crying for her children.
She refused to be comforted,
because they no longer existed.”
Matthew 2:16-18
Also Matthew 26:3-4.

More Information:

Herod the Great was an Idumean and was made king by the Romans 40BC and took office in 37BC and died in 4BC.

How do we find which Herod is which?
There are a number of men called HEROD in the Bible, starting with Herod the Great who died in spring (March, April, May) 4BC. There are also a number of rulers descending from this man to whom the Bible gives names other than Herod in their Title e.g. Herodian Dynasty.

Herod died aged 69 possibly of chronic kidney disease.

Which Herod was Jesus referring to in Mark 8:15? It was Herod Antipas (Galilee & Perea), “that fox.”

Other slides in this module: