Each year at our church we have a Maundy Thursday service during the week of Easter. During the Maundy Thursday service they have a living portrayal of the Lord’s Supper. One of the characters that is depicted is Judas Iscariot. We like to think of how bad Judas must have been to give up Jesus to the chief priests, but how many times have we sold Jesus ourselves?
Then one of the twelve, whose name was Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, “What will you give me if I deliver him over to you?” And they paid him thirty pieces of silver. And from that moment he sought to betray him. Matthew 26:14-16
How often have we had moments in our own lives where we were just like Judas? There are times when we let down Christ’s role in our own lives. There are times when we fail Him. There are times when we deny Jesus. There are times when we desert our Savior. I am sure each and every one of us can remember countless times that we turned our back on him and turned our face to other things.
We sometimes do a lot of talking about how strong our faith in Jesus is. How often when we are faced with temptation do we allow apathy, selfishness, and greed to show us just how small our faith is? We know that we are not perfect in any way, but we expect that we should know better.
Fortunately, Jesus didn’t die on that cross to put huge loads of guilt on our shoulders, to shame us into trying harder, but to show us how much He loves us. In spite of our dents, our failures, our sin, He loved us enough to give His life to free us from our sin. Despite our betrayal, He continues to pursue us, to want time with us, to forgive us, and call us. What an amazing God we serve.
We have all sold Jesus away many times. It may have been for money, momentary pleasure, self-gratification, selfishness, pride, lust, achievement, greed, or apathy. Can we really blame Judas? Is he any worse than we are? We are more like him than we would like to admit.
We can rest assured because we have a Hope this Easter.
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.