What Killed King Herod In The Bible?


5 Answers

Ann Dougherty Profile
Ann Dougherty answered
There were two kings called Herod and both of them are mentioned in the Bible.

Herod the Great ruled from 37 to 4 BC. His death is perhaps not described in the Bible, but we do know from other sources that he died of a lingering and painful illness. Always a cruel tyrant, given to executing his supporters and even members of his own family on a whim, this disease seems to have magnified his cruelty. His death occurred in March of 4 BC of such a dreadful illness that it was widely believed to be a judgment of God for his wickedness. It has been suggested that he may have died of a particularly horrible cancer like disease called Fournier's gangrene. It is described as a form of necrotizing fasciitis of the private parts most common in men over 50. Predispositions include diabetes and a compromised immune system. This diagnosis is probably derived from the historian, Josephus' exhaustive description of Herod's symptoms, which includes his genital area becoming so severely necrotized that it bred worms. It does seem though that Herod lingered much longer than average for sufferers from this disease, which can kill quickly.

Herod Agrippa I was the second of the two Herods who were given the title of King and was the grandson of Herod the Great. I do not know whether or not anyone has been able to identify precisely what disease it was Herod Agrippa I died of. He died in AD 44, exactly forty years after his grandfather's death, after a reign of seven years.

Luke, in the Acts of the Apostles, states that Herod Agrippa, wearing his royal robes and sitting on his throne, gave a public address to a deputation from Tyre and Sidon. They started to shout "This is the voice of a god, not a man". Herod apparently accepted this grovelling instead of giving glory to God and an angel of God "struck him down", apparently during the course of this speech.

The historian, Flavius Josephus tells much the same story. He says that Herod Agrippa appeared to accept the grovelling worship of the people. But he says that he was almost immediately struck by extremely violent pains in the belly. He realised immediately that God had struck him, and that he was dying, he believed as punishment for accepting worship which should only belong to God. Josephus states that he had to be carried back to the palace. His pain was agonising and unremitting. He died five days later, exhausted from the agony.

Josephus' account could suggest something such as a burst appendix or the later stages of bowel cancer, which very often does not become agonizingly painful until the very end. The account in Luke could suggest anything, because it does not describe in detail how he was struck down. There have also been suggestions that he was poisoned by Roman agents because he was becoming too powerful.

The interesting thing is that Luke says that Herod Agrippa was "eaten by worms" and died. Whether that relates to how the extreme agony of his disease felt to Herod Agrippa, or whether Luke is, at this point, describing the death of Herod the Great is hard to tell.
Selie Visa Profile
Selie Visa answered
We find five Herods in the Bible:

1) Herod the Great slaughtered the children in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under in his vain attempt to destroy Jesus. His punishment from God was immediate. He died within six months after contracting a loathsome disease. Physicians were helpless and Herod was also taken to the hot springs on the east of the Dead Sea (which are believed to have healing properties) in the hope of a cure.
2) Archelaus ruled over Judea, Samaria and Idumea from 4 BC to AD 6. But due to misrule he was removed from office and exiled to Gaul for the rest of his life (Matthew 2:22). 3) Herod Antipas rule over Galilee and Perea from 4 BC to AD 39. He incarcerated John in the Castle of Machaerus (Matthew 14:1-12; Luke 3:19-20; Mark 6:14-29). 4) Herod Agrippa I ruled from AD 40 to 44. He killed James the Apostle and imprisoned Peter (Acts 12:1-23). His death noted in the Book of Acts is also fully recorded by the Jewish historian Josephus.

5) Herod Agrippa II, known in history as King Herod Agrippa II and in the NT as Agrippa. Paul appeared before him (Acts 25:23 to Acts 26:32). He died in AD 100.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Emanuel Watkins Profile
Emanuel Watkins answered
God sent as plague that ate his flesh away while he was still alive. It was like worms or something that He sent to torment him.
mark ssali Profile
mark ssali answered
Acts in the bible shows that after being worshipped by people and accepting this.then God sent an angel who struck him dead .the bible clearly shows tat he started rotting there and then.

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