From Where I Sit: Again, children murdered around ChristmastimeBy: Tom Rupp, Special to the Telegraph
Little children were also killed when Jesus was born. Herod sent out a decree that all males aged 2 and under be slaughtered. This was done probably because of his insane jealousy prompted by the question that the visitors form the East asked him – “Where is He who is born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the east and are come to worship him” (Matthew 2:2).
Herod sent them on a mission to do his research for him and report back with the results. He said, “Go and search diligently for the young child; and when you have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also” (Matthew 2:6). You can almost hear the irony in his voice as he says the word “worship.”
Well, Joseph and Mary were warned by God in a dream to flee to Egypt for their safety. God had also warned the visitors from the east to flee. So Herod was left alone in Judea and embarrassed. Something significant happened under his jurisdiction and he had no knowledge of it. It was akin to a public humiliation.
Listen to how the Bible tells what happened next – “Herod was furious when he realized that the wise men had outwitted him. He sent soldiers to kill all the boys in and around Bethlehem who were two years old and under, based on the wise men’s report of the star’s first appearance.
Herod’s brutal action fulfilled what God had spoken through the prophet Jeremiah: ‘A cry was heard in Ramah -- weeping and great mourning. Rachel weeps for her children, refusing to be comforted, for they are dead.’”(Matthew 2:16-18)
It is difficult to remember that the joyous Christmas story we hear every year was couched in hideous murder. Those first Christmases weren’t very merry. And once again, as it were, Rachel weeps for murdered children this Christmas season.
For now, I have no answer for the events of last week – the mass shooting at an elementary school where little children were killed. Some questions need not be asked. Some answers cannot be given. I do know “there is an evil I have seen under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 10:5).
I’ve about said enough. Anyone and everyone who has any sort of opinion about this whole sorry mess should think twice, and twice again, before saying anything. Believe me – I surely did.
Reach Tom Rupp at firstname.lastname@example.org.