Herod dressed himself in his royal robes and took his seat on the official platform to make a public address to them.
The people began to shout, “The voice of a god, not of a mortal!”
Immediately an angel of the Lord struck him, because he didn’t give God the glory.
He was eaten by worms and expired.
Our author Luke and ancient historian Josephus (in his work Antiquities) are in agreement that the reason for Herod’s being struck was due to his acceptance of praise and glory that only God is worthy of. Josephus says he developed horrible stomach pains and died four days later.*
The essence of all sin is idolatry–a violation of the very first of the famous Ten Commandments. All sin goes back to this: Refusing to let God be God. It has also been phrased “the deflection of divine praise”.
Whatever you honor above God oppresses you and becomes your captor. God asks our surrender not because he is that big egomaniac in the sky, but because there is an order of creation and a way things work. Whatever you enthrone in your life–give most energy to we could maybe say–that is what has control of you.
Jesus has defeated all powers of darkness, so it is our surrender to those powers that gives them control, not that they have more power than God.
When you surrender to Jesus and make him Lord over your life, only then will you have victory, freedom, peace, and release from your captors and the power of their oppression.
There’s just a way things work.
Give God the glory and praise in all things and see what happens. Everyone I’ve ever known who has done this, or who I’ve read about doing this, lives in freedom.
What do you devote most of your energy to?
Where do your thoughts mostly go?
Where does your time mostly go?
Where does your money mostly go?
Whatever/whoever your answer is is your lord, and likely has control of you.
Hopefully it is the kind and benevolent Jesus.
*Probably a gangrenous bowel disease involving maggots.