17:15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16 Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. 17 Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.
18 “I am not referring to all of you; I know those I have chosen. But this is to fulfill this passage of Scripture: ‘He who shared my bread has turned against me.’
19 “I am telling you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believethat I am who I am. 20 Very truly I tell you, whoever accepts anyone I send accepts me; and whoever accepts me accepts the one who sent me.”
21 After he had said this, Jesus was troubled in spirit and testified, “Very truly I tell you, one of you is going to betray me.”
22 His disciples stared at one another, at a loss to know which of them he meant. 23 One of them, the disciple whom Jesus loved, was reclining next to him. 24 Simon Peter motioned to this disciple and said, “Ask him which one he means.”
25 Leaning back against Jesus, he asked him, “Lord, who is it?”
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, the son of Simon Iscariot. 27 As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him.
So Jesus told him, “What you are about to do, do quickly.” 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 festival, or to give something to the poor. 30 As soon as Judas had taken the bread, he went out. And it was night.
The betrayal of Judas is one of the most fascinating stories in all of scripture. How could someone who knew Jesus so well sell him out for a few lousy coins? It seems unimaginable that it could happen. But it did and here are some things we can learn from this story:
Lessons of Judas’ betrayal:
1. Proximity to Jesus does not guarantee intimacy with Jesus
There are a lot of people who are around Jesus who don’t love Jesus. There are people who come to church and who are around church people and who are in worship and involved in worship and who know the the gospel and know the teachings and are around the church but there are hearts are cold to Jesus.
Proximity to Jesus does not guarantee intimacy with him. It is as true today as it was back then.
2. If Jesus can be betrayed, anyone can be betrayed
What to do when you feel betrayed:
- Put betrayal in proper perspective
- Understand you’re in good company
- Learn from Jesus
3. Our idolatry keeps us from receiving Jesus
The reason Judas could not receive Jesus was because he was all about Judas. He had the same time with Jesus as other disicples, but he did not become what the other disciples became. The other disciples lead thousands but not Judas- Judas became a small miserable man.
Judas sold out Jesus to a bunch of religious people. Religion keeps us from seeing Jesus. Religion is about works and about moralism and about pride. The Religious leaders couldn’t understand who Jesus was because their religiousness kept them from seeing him.
4. The solution is the gospel.
You are not surprised to hear me say that the solution is the gospel. But the answer to all betrayal is that Jesus himself took all out betrayals onto himself when he died on that cross so that we could be forever accepted.
Look at the example of Peter. Peter ran back to Jesus and Jesus forgave him. Jesus aske him three times, “do you love me?” And three times Peter affirmed his love.
Receiving the unconditional and irresistable love of Jesus is the answer to our betrayal.
- Why do you think Judas was capable of betraying Jesus?
- What made Judas different from other apostles?
- What does this story teach us about how to get through our betrayals
- What is the danger in projecting our own agenda on the purposes of Christ?
- What was the differences between the betrayal of Judas and the denial of Peter?
- How do we ultimately get through our feelings of betrayal and inadequacy in life?