One of the most troubling characters of the entire Bible is Judas Iscariot. There were many scoundrels and betrayers in the history of God’s people, but Judas stands out because of his intimate closeness to Jesus Christ.
At the Passover celebration, Jesus washed the disciples’ feet and then they ate together.
At one point Jesus told them that there was one of them who would betray Jesus. Puzzled and anxious, they asked Jesus to clarify.
26 Jesus answered, "It is the one to whom I will give this piece of bread when I have dipped it in the dish." Then, dipping the piece of bread, he gave it to Judas Iscariot, son of Simon.
27 As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him. "What you are about to do, do quickly," Jesus told him,
28 but no one at the meal understood why Jesus said this to him.
29 Since Judas had charge of the money, some thought Jesus was telling him to buy what was needed for the Feast, or to give something to the poor.
30 As soon as Judas had taken the bread, he went out. And it was night.
Before we heroically convince ourselves into thinking that we would never betray Jesus, let’s think about the kind of person Judas was.
1. He was hand-picked to be mentored by Jesus. Jesus called him.
2. He experienced Jesus and the power of God firsthand. He took part in the miracles.
3. He was trusted. It was his job to handle the team’s money.
4. He was concerned about moral correctness and just, social action. When the woman washed Jesus’ feet with her hair and the costly perfume, he objected saying the money could have been spent on the poor instead of the wasted perfume.
Many ideas have been floated as to why Judas betrayed Jesus in setting up an ambush with the religious leaders. The sad truth is he had reasons and let the Devil take over. From the presence of Jesus to allowing the Devil to enter him happened in one bite of the bread.
The Devil is always looking for someone with mixed motives to do his dirty work. We need to guard our hearts from secret agendas that run in opposition to the ways of Jesus. When we eat the bread of life and betray our brother or sister, we make room for the Devil to accomplish his will.
Do our actions toward one another bring life or do we rob, kill and destroy the work of God that is being accomplished?
When we eat the bread and drink the cup, we remember that Jesus gave up his life so that we could find life. Let’s eat and drink in honour of the One who loves His betrayers. Let’s eat and drink with a heart that forgives all those who betray us.