Now the Festival of Unleavened Bread, called the Passover, was approaching, and the chief priests and the teachers of the law were looking for some way to get rid of Jesus, for they were afraid of the people. Then Satan entered Judas, called Iscariot, one of the Twelve. And Judas went to the chief priests and the officers of the temple guard and discussed with them how he might betray Jesus. They were delighted and agreed to give him money. He consented, and watched for an opportunity to hand Jesus over to them when no crowd was present.
The sad, sad story of Judas Iscariot unfolds during this week that changed the world. We don’t know much about Judas. He was the treasurer for the group. He didn’t have a problem “borrowing” money from the purse. The title Iscariot means he was probably a zealot, which makes the story even more confusing. He jumps into bed with the leadership who was collaborating against Jesus with the Roman government.
So, why did he do it? Why did he betray Jesus? Well, certainly greed was a motivator? Thirty pieces of silver was a hefty sum. But I think, with many others, that he discovered that Jesus wasn’t the kind of Messiah he wanted, one that would overthrow the Roman occupying force. Some think he was trying to force Jesus’ hand, as if anybody could do so.
And look at the authorities. They are still trying to find a way to get rid of Jesus, but in a private, secluded place. Secretly. Just like the prince of darkness plots his evil deeds. And the best possible solution for them drops in their laps, one of Jesus’ own companions is willing to hand Him over.
Of course, Luke is clear to show who is the mastermind of this betrayal. “Satan entered Judas.” In order for that to happen, I believe Judas must have been a willing subject. Greed, lust for power and position, impatience, all can be tools in Satan’s hands.
The act was done. The way to Jesus’ death lies with a friend.
Lord, keep me pure and true and honest in my commitment to you. In Your name, Amen.
Until next time,
TO THE GLORY OF GOD!