14 Then one of the Twelve—the one called Judas Iscariot—went to the chief priests 15 and asked, “What are you willing to give me if I deliver him over to you?” So they counted out for him thirty pieces of silver. 16 From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over – Matt. 26:14-16
Colin S Smith in one of his books, ‘Heaven, So Near – So Far: The Story of Iscariot,’ retells the gospel story from the perspective of Judas Iscariot, who betrayed Jesus. Judas, the son of Simon was bribed to betray Jesus (Jn 6:71). Judas’s life and ministry became an occasion to uncover the awfulness of sin (Matthew 26:14-16). The greed Judas evidenced by that act was another indicator of his wicked heart. Driven by greed, he betrayed the Lord for thirty pieces of silver, and damned his soul to hell. Wednesday of the Holy Week reminds us that a person may experience the closest possible contact with the Lord Jesus and still not come to Him for salvation.
The Bible says, “A double-minded man is unstable in all his ways” (James. 1:8). Judas, a follower of Jesus for three years and a preacher of the gospel was a double-minded and unstable man in all his ways, hence he later abandoned the faith he once professed. Judas’s active involvement in the ministry, though good at the face value, a treasurer, but it was not a guarantee of his spiritual life and health. Judas had Jesus as his model of faith and a better environment for forming his faith. Judas had a better evidence for faith and witness many miracles, “With Judas’s own eyes, he saw the clearest evidence. With his own ears, he heard the finest teaching. With his own feet, he followed the greatest example. And yet this man still betrayed Jesus.” According to Colin, “It’s hard to understand how a young person raised by godly parents in the context of a healthy church, taught the truths of Scripture from an early age, and grounded in apologetics can give up on Jesus. Judas’s story contains an important lesson for parents, leaders, and friends who grieve over someone they love who has abandoned the faith.”
Wednesday of the Holy Week reminds us how Judas went out into the darkness he had chosen just as many churches, nations and individuals are making their choices today. There is not middle ground in Christianity, in the words of Colin, it is either we become wholly His, or we end up more alienated from Him. The lesson for us is that ‘nothing good can come from giving up on Jesus Christ. It is very suicidal.
Prayer: O Lord, deliver Your church and leadership from double-mindedness in Jesus name.