“And said unto his servants, This is John the Baptist; he is risen from the dead; and therefore mighty works do shew forth themselves in him.”
Herod found himself between a rock and a hard place when John the Baptist preached against his adulterous relationship with his sister-in-law. Herod was certainly the ruler and could do anything he wanted to do, which he did, but he also had people who would do what they could to remove him from office if he had him killed. Unfortunately, it was the manipulative move of his sister-in-law that caused him to eventually have John the Baptist beheaded. The reason Herod didn’t make the right decision with that situation is because he didn’t remove the negative pressure points in his life.
Every person must be careful about those negative pressure points that put so much pressure on us that we make bad decisions. I often tell people that you can make thousands of good decisions and one bad decision, and the one bad decision will destroy the thousands of good decisions. If you are going to make the right choices in life, you are going to have to remove the negative pressure points in your life. In this story with Herod, three negative pressure points are discovered that you must remove if you don’t want them to influence you to make a bad decision.
The first negative pressure point is peer pressure. One of the reasons Herod couldn’t make right decisions is because he allowed his sister-in-law to influence his decisions. You always have a choice between positive and negative peer pressure. If you allow the pressure from your peers to influence your decisions, you are bound to make wrong decisions. Peers must never be a part of your decision-making process. Certainly, positive peer pressure can help you make right decisions, but what are you going to do when the positive peer pressure turns negative? The decisions you make should never be based on what your peers think or are doing.
The second negative pressure point is sin pressure. Herod was afraid his affair would be discovered, and that pressured him into making a bad decision. Sin’s revelation always influences you into making wrong decisions. One reason you must always deal quickly with sin is so that it doesn’t put pressure on you in your decision-making. The fear of sin being discovered always pressures people into making more faulty decisions. The best way to remove this negative pressure point is to confess your sin to God and do right.
The third negative pressure point is expediency pressure. Herod was more concerned with how his decision affected his present affair. Decisions based on how you are presently influenced always leads to negative consequences in the future. Every decision you make should be looked at through the prism of the future. Just because a decision makes the present more enjoyable and easier doesn’t remove tomorrow’s negative effects. Decisions based on how it affects you today is a negative pressure that leads to bad decisions.
My friend, always base your decisions on the Word of God. You can always have a good reason as to why you should do something, but that doesn’t make it right. Be sure that at the core of every decision is God’s Word. You will never regret scripturally-based decisions.