I should have had him executed right there and then.
Can you imagine, the audacity, this crazy foreigner and his scrawny camel crew, riding up to MY city, asking directions to the king of the Jews! I am the king. I, Herod, I rule this land. By Ceasar's degree I have assumed the throne, and by my ruthlessness it has remained mine, and mine alone.
Challenge me and die.
The king of the Jews! Ha! We have seen his star! Really? Crazy Babylonian! The stars can tell that a king has been born, lead you through the desert, and then you get lost on his doorstep? And you come to me for directions? Me? The true king? I have slaughtered my own family to protect my throne, and you come tell me that a new king has been born?
And now this whole mad city is in turmoil. "The king of the Jews has been born". Rattle a scroll and they revolt. How long before someone say "Messiah" and start another war? Somewhere out in the sticks a peasant gives birth, and suddenly they turn on me? After all I've done for them? We shall see.
But foreign visitors should be treated with respect - Caesar's eyes and ears are everywhere. So I wined them and I dined them, and pretended to be interested in their star-talk. I had their flearidden camels fed and pampered in my stalls. Even their drummer boy got meat to eat. Let it be known: Herod knows how to treat his guests. And his rivals ...
"Go and pay him homage". Oh, I can be so smooth when it suits me. "Make a careful search for this child. As soon as you find him, let me know, so that I too may go and worship him."
Worship him? Are you out of your mind? If anyone should be worshipped, it's me! But let this little drama play itself out. They will see. No one will challenge me and live ...
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