ALL THE HERODS:
A few weeks back, we discussed the difference between Herod the Great in Matthew 2, and Herod the Tetrarch in Matthew 14. The question then came up about Archeleus in Matthew 2:22, who was said to be "ruling in place of his father Herod." I promised to do some research into the line of Herod for us all. Here we go:
- Herod the Great ruled from about 37 B.C. to about 1 B.C.* Before he died, he split up his kingdom with his 4 sons (tetrarch means "ruler of one fourth"). When he died, his sons took over the last pieces he had ruled.
- Archeleus ruled Judea (one fourth of Herod the Great's kingdom) from about 4 B.C. to about 6 A.D. He's only mentioned once in scripture.
- Herod the Tetrarch (a.k.a. Herod Antipas) ruled Galilee (including Nazareth) and Perea from about 4 B.C. to about 40 A.D. He is both the man who killed John the Baptist and the one who Jesus comes before during his trial (Luke 23:6-12).
- Philip ruled 4 B.C. to about 34 A.D. over Ituraea. He's only mentioned in scripture as the husband of Herodias (Luke 14:3)
- Herod Agrippa I took over Herod the Tetrarch's kingdom and ruled from 41 A.D. to 44 A.D. He is the one who arrested James and Peter in Acts 12:1-3.
- Herod Agrippa II (known as "King Agrippa") was the son of Herod Agrippa I and ruled from 50 A.D. to 93 A.D. He was the one that Paul was brought before in Acts 25 & Acts 26.
*This, of course, raises the obvious question: "How could Herod the Great die in 1 B.C., if B.C. means 'Before Christ'?" It's because the exact B.C./A.D. split was set down a long time ago, when the exact dating of Christ's birth was uncertain. We now believe Jesus was born around 5 B.C., although even now it is impossible to be certain, because the gospel writers did not write down an exact date.