Journey to the Cross part 4
Then one of the Twelve—the one called Judas Iscariot—went to the chief priests and asked, “What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?” So they counted out for him thirty silver coins. From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over.
Ever since the beginning of Christ’s ministry, he was not the most popular among the leading religious officials. Especially after Lazarus was raised from the dead. John 11:47-57 tells us that after this moment the officials were looking for a way to kill Jesus.
Enter Judas Iscariot onto the scene. He was part of the inner 12 of Jesus’ disciples. He was also the dirty treasurer who kept the group money bag and stealing from it regularly to suit his needs.
He approached the High priests with an irresistible offer. Jesus for what ever money they were willing to pay. The priests make the trade, knowing that they will have gotten rid of Jesus once and for all (kinda, but they don’t that yet).
This is the beginning of the Ultimate Betrayal.
Betrayal. We have all felt it at one point or another. Whether through friends, family, or someone we trusted the most.
I cannot imagine the grief Jesus felt knowing that one of his own friends by the end of week following the Triumphant entry would betray him in the end. Nor can I imagine the emotional struggle going through Judas’ mind. Judas had traveled with Jesus, knew what the consequences would be if he followed through with the plan. Knew what the high priests were planning. What an emotional roller-coaster that must have been.
Judas had become so obsessed with money that he did the unthinkable. He betrayed his best friend. How often do we as humans seek to go after the material tings in life? How often do we let these things control our actions, our thoughts?
I recently listened to a speech made at a Ministry Department luncheon here at Huntington University, in which the speaker stated two things about Ministry. 1) It is about relationships and 2) Ministry is a battle. Ministry is relationships in that not only do we have to form relationships with those that we serve, but also a relationship with God. Ministry is a battle in the fact that Satan is trying to win us over through temptations of this world.
I will admit that I fail in the relationship part. I let this life get in the way of spending time with my Heavenly Father, instead of the other way around and going to the Father first. In this way I am letting Satan win the battle over my life and my ministry to others.
Judas allowed Satan to get the best of his life. He was constantly tempted by the money bag of the group. This led to his ultimate downfall of broken relationships and eventually Judas’s life. After the event was done, the guilt and thoughts of what he had just done caused him to buy a field, and hang himself in it.
Have you forgotten that the Christian life is about relationships with both God and others?