As I was reading my Bible for the study today, I couldn’t help but feel sadness for Judas Iscariot. What would make him want to betray Jesus? Was it really worth the thirty pieces of silver? Sadly, no. As a matter of fact, it was the worst thing he could have possibly done.
It says in Matthew 26:21-25 (NIV):
“And while they were eating, he said, “Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me.” They were very sad and began to say to him one after the other, “Surely you don’t mean me, Lord?”
Jesus replied, “The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with me will betray me. The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him. But woe to that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would be better for him if he had not been born.”
Then Judas, the one who would betray him, said, “Surely you don’t mean me, Rabbi?” Jesus answered, “You have said so.”
This part of verse 24 really stood out to me:
“But woe to that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would be better for him if he had not been born.”
Wow. Those are some mighty huge consequences!
It got me to thinking about betrayal. Nobody likes to be betrayed. It hurts. You feel alone. You feel abandoned. You wonder how the person who said that they cared about you, maybe even loved you, betray the relationship you thought you had?
Betrayal comes in many forms. It happens in friendships, in family relationships, in marriages. No matter how it happens, the pain of it is real. When you think of how much it hurts us as humans, can you imagine how much it must hurt God when we betray Him?
Now think about this; how many times has Jesus really been betrayed?
It has to be millions of times per day. Every time someone scoffs at Him. Every time someone refuses to acknowledge Him. Most importantly, every time someone who calls themselves a Christian or a Christ follower and deliberately turns a blind eye to what they know is right, Jesus is betrayed.
His compassion, His great love for us, His mercy, His forgiveness, His very death is thrown back in His face each time we fail to follow the guidelines He has set out for us.
It’s like we are saying, “Eh. Yeah. I know you suffered horribly on the cross for me, and I know you ultimately died for me, but right now I want to do my own thing.”
How much that must hurt Him!
I’ve made so many mistakes in my past. I’ve sinned. I’ve hurt people. I’ve probably broken at least half of the Ten Commandments. As I sit here now and think of it, it shames me and I wonder why it took me 30+ years to realize the depth of God’s love for me, and why didn’t I see it … truly see it … so many years before?
I have always known God was real. I have always known that I needed to live my life for Him. That being the case, why did I make so many stupid choices in my life, and why did I not always put Him first?
I sometimes wonder how God can stand us, His rebellious children. I guess it just goes to show how true His love for us really is.
I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to betray my Lord again. I want to live as He would have me to live. I know I can never be perfect, and I cannot live the rest of my life without committing any more sin, but from the depths of my very being I want to honor Him. I want Him to be proud of me. I sincerely want to do my very best to live my life for His glory.
When the day comes that I meet Him face to face, I want Him to look at me and say, “Well done, daughter. Welcome home!”