12/9 "Jesus Changes Our Stories - Herod's Story"

Title: Herod’s Story Texts: Mt. 2:1-12Mt. 14:1-10; Ac. 12:19-23; Ja. 3:14-16; Tit. 3:9-11

In a Nutshell:  There are some people who’s stories Jesus will not in this life change for the good.  They can’t see the need for them to change.  Interestingly, there are some common threads of causes and indicators to help us understand who they are, why they are that way, and how we might react.  Bottom line when you see relational chaos and destructive relationships you can count on bitter jealousy and selfish ambition being at the core of someone’s virtue.  (James 3:14-16) King Herod and his family line is a perfect example of how bad it can get!

Ice Breaker: Can you describe a time you were unable to see a selfish attitude or behavior until someone in an unusual way got your attention?  Maybe it would be safest for you to describe someone else’s selfishness… Yeah – probably not!


  1. Herod the Great, though known to the world as “A Great Builder” is known to many because of his paranoia over his throne.  What caused this reputation of fear?  Mt. 2:1-12
  2. What seemed to drive most every decision Herod made?  Mt. 2:1-12,
  3. How did his offspring seem to mimic his core value of control? Mt. 14:1-10Ac. 12:19-23;
  4. What does Scripture  suggest as the root of chaos and  every vile  action? Ja. 3:14-16
  5. What does Paul say is the problem with a person that continually argues and causes division in the church?  Tit. 3:9-11


  1. Ja. 3:14-16 mentions “every vile practice.”  List “vile practices” that might be seen in relationships and organizations?
  2. Does it seem easier to see selfishness in others than it is to see it in ourselves?  Why or Why not?
  3. Is it possible to be a “Self-deprecating Narcissist? blog by Jack Watts 
  4. How would you recommend someone approach you if they feel you are being selfish?
  5. What’s the danger of calling someone Narcissistic when actually they just seem selfish at times?


  1. How might a church promote Narcissism in its ministry?
  2. Would someone in your CARE group confront someone else  in your group  if they showed signs of being Narcissistic?  How should that be done?

 Some Resources:

Narccism in Christian Leaders

Selfishness and Narcissm in Family Relationships by Lynne Namka, Ed. D.

Herod’s Family Tree -

The Lost Tomb of Herod  by National Geographic 


Title:  “Joseph’s Story”

Text: Matthew 1:18-24

Questions:  It is true that every story has two sides,  his and hers.  This week read Matthew 1:18-24  & Luke 1:1-56.  How might Mary’s view and Joseph’s view of the situation be described uniquely.

Parents with your children: To say Mary’s pregnancy was a surprise is an understatement.  Depending on the age of your children you might consider talking about Mary and Joseph’s decision to trust God during difficult times, or with older children you might role play being Mary and trying to explain to Mom & Dad your pregnancy, or being Joseph and defending to his friends his choice to trust Mary and get married anyway.  Parents of toddler might check this out:  Focus on the Nativity at Creative Connections for Kids