Well, why did you send for me, brother dear?"
“I sent for you to ask you to do something about it--try to instigate another insurrection--this time against my dear nephew."
Manaheem frowned. "I’m sorry, brother dear, but I’m out of the insurrection business. You forget that since I met Jesus, I’m a new man."
Herod sighed. “I know all about your Jesus. But it doesn't mean you can't do a little dirty work on the side, does it?"
Manaheem sighed. "Apparently you don't know all about Jesus. He didn't come to establish an earthly kingdom as some suppose. His kingdom is within the hearts of men like me, and He would never sanction such a thing as you are purposing."
"Why not? It would just be evening things out a bit."
"--From your point of view. But, He taught us that rulers are placed where they are by the design of God. It is He who has given you this kingdom and it is He who has given your nephew his, despite the fact of his friendship with Caligula. Perhaps that friendship was the means to it, but it was still ordained by God or it wouldn't have happened."
Herod sighed and took a big gulp of wine. "Well, I see that we will get nowhere like this. So, you absolutely refuse to help me, no matter how much I would pay you?"
Manaheem sighed again. "Money is no longer important to me. You should know that by now. Since my conversion to become a follower of Jesus, I only seek spiritual good--such as the salvation of your eternal soul, brother dear."
Herod sighed. "Well, brother dear, the day you get me to believe in your Jesus will be a cold day in hell."
"Well that's exactly where you'll end up and it will be far from cold. Oh, Herod I so want you to go to heaven like me."
“And I just may." Herod took his crown off of his head and held it. "You see, I plan to repent on my deathbed."
"But who’s to say you'll have that chance? You could be struck down suddenly."
"Well, I guess that's a chance I’ll have to take. But, enough of this absurd conversation! If you're not going to help, be off with you!"
Manaheem bowed politely and left.
After Manaheem left, Herod got up from his throne and yelled toward royal bedchamber, the door of which Herodias had neglected to close: "Herodias, dear! Come here will you!"
"Yes, Herod my dear?" she said as she entered.
"Did you have a nice rest dear?"
"Oh, yes. I’m feeling much better." She sat down on the throne beside him. "How did it go with Manaheem?"
"The old geyser refuses to work for me anymore. All he wants to talk about now is this Jesus of his. Oh, my dear, I don't know what to do now. With Caligula granting favors to Agrippa I’m sure I shall be out of favor and out of my position before long."
She frowned and placed her head in her hands thoughtfully. Then she looked up smiling. "Well, Herod, dear, why don't we go to Rome and ask a favor from the emperor as well?"
"Do you really think he would grant us one, dear?"
“I don't see why not. You're just as deserving as your lousy nephew."
"Fine. Make arrangements for the voyage, then, won’t you."
"Certainly, my dear."
CHAPTER 20: BANISHMENT AND TERRITORY
God does not suffer presumption in anyone but himself.
It was a lovely voyage. The wind was a bit stronger than when Agrippa had sailed, so they arrived quicker. As they were about to land at Capri, they felt quite refreshed.
"It was a lovely voyage, wasn't it dear?"
"Lovely indeed. And here we are at the very lovely isle of Capri. We shall go straight to the royal palace for a visit with the emperor. Perhaps he will allow us to stay in the palace temporarily."
"Do you think anyone around here will know where it is?"
"Certainly, my dear. Everyone should."
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