When Was Jesus Born?
Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death, Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.
The Death of Herod – Matthew 2:14–23
Aside from the accounts in Matthew which include the visit of the Magi to worship the Christ child and of the family’s subsequent escape to Egypt, there is very little in the Bible regarding the death of Herod and the early years of Jesus’ life.
Herod’s death is mentioned in three verses in the Gospel of Matthew:
“So he [Joseph] got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt, where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: ‘Out of Egypt I called my son’
When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi. . .
After Herod died, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt and said, ‘Get up, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who were trying to take the child’s life are dead.’ So he got up, took the child and his mother and went to the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning in Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. Having been warned in a dream, he withdrew to the district of Galilee, and he went and lived in a town called Nazareth. So was fulfilled what was said through the prophets: ‘He will be called a Nazarene.’” (Matthew 2:14–16, 19-23 NIV)
From Matthew we can therefore see that Herod’s death most certainly occurred after the birth of Jesus, after the Magi’s visit, and after the family’s sojourn to Egypt.
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