What might we learn from “The Betrayal Of Jesus”? Lest we follow the same path of Judas, let’s
reflect for a few moments on what we can glean from the Scriptures… Jesus was betrayed by a close friend. Judas was no stranger to Jesus. As already mentioned, he was one of the apostles – Mt 10:2-4 “The names of the twelve apostles are these: first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Cananaean, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.” He was among those whom Jesus loved – Jn 13:1 “Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart out of this world to the Father, having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.” Yet as prophesied, Jesus was betrayed by “a familiar friend” – Psa 41:9 “Even my close friend in whom I trusted, who ate my bread, has lifted his heel against me.”
Being close to Jesus is no guarantee. Just being His disciples is no assurance we could not betray Him. Like several of the churches in Asia Minor, we could leave our first love – Re 2:4-5 “But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.” We could begin to tolerate false doctrine – Re 2:14-16 “But I have a few things against you: you have some there who hold the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the sons of Israel, so that they might eat food sacrificed to idols and practice sexual immorality. So also you have some who hold the teaching of the Nicolaitans. Therefore repent. If not, I will come to you soon and war against them with the sword of my mouth.” We could permit false teachers to spread their doctrines – Re 2:20 “But I have this against you, that you tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess and is teaching and seducing my servants to practice sexual immorality and to eat food sacrificed to idols.” We could fail to perfect our works, and not be watchful – Re 3:1-3 “‘And to the angel of the church in Sardis write: ‘The words of him who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. “‘I know your works. You have the reputation of being alive, but you are dead. Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God. Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you.” We could become lukewarm – Re 3:15-16 ‘”‘I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.” Yes, we can betray Jesus by denying Him who bought us – 2 Pe 2:1 “But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction.” Therefore we need to heed Jesus’ admonition to be “faithful unto death” (Re 2:10 “Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have tribulation. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life.”), and not assume that close proximity to Jesus in the past guarantees faithfulness in the future.