Herodias's chance [for vengeance against John] finally came on Herod's birthday. He gave a party for his high government officials, army officers, and the leading citizens of Galilee. Then his daughter, also named Herodias, came in and performed a dance that greatly pleased Herod and his guests. "Ask me for anything you like," the king said to the girl, "and I will give it to you." He even vowed, "I will give you whatever you ask, up to half my kingdom!"
She went out and asked her mother, "What should I ask for?"
Her mother told her, "Ask for the head of John the Baptist!"
So the girl hurried back to the king and told him, "I want the head of John the Baptist, right now, on a tray!"
Then the king deeply regretted what he had said; but because of the vows he had made in front of his guests, he couldn't refuse her.
— Mark 6:21-26 NLT
This horrible story is a reminder that God's people often face direct opposition from those in power. Proclaiming truth does not always lead to pleasant short-term results for God's truth-telling people. John lost his life because of the unscrupulous desires of an immoral Herodias and the political cowardice of Herod — who added incest to his adultery by taking Herodias (his half-brother's wife and the daughter of another half-brother) as his own wife. Shamefulness and blatant sin hate truth-telling and will do whatever is necessary to hide the truth, including sometimes killing the truth-teller. So we shouldn't be surprised in our day when the truth is not desired and is often opposed by those who choose the way of immorality. Let's pray for truth-tellers! Let's ask God to make their influence felt and for their lives not to be lived in vain!
O God, please protect and empower your truth-tellers. Make their voices effective. Keep their enemies from silencing them. When their ministry is complete, please bring them home to you with great joy. In Jesus' name. Amen.