“Then one of the Twelve–the one called Judas Iscariot–went to the chief priests and asked, ‘What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?’ So they counted out for him thirty silver coins. From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over.” – Matthew 26:14-16 (NIV)
Why did Judas Iscariot betray Jesus? While the Bible gives us lots of character (or lack thereof) snapshots of Judas, any attempt to answer the question of why he chose to betray Christ is speculative.
- Maybe his realization that Jesus was destined for a cross and not an earthly throne led to his decision to stand with whom he thought would be the winner between the Pharisees and Jesus.
- Maybe he saw his “stock investment” in Jesus plunging and wanted to cash out, before it was worth absolutely nothing.
What we do know is that Judas was hanging around with Christ for the better part of three years. Judas had a great seat at many other people’s life changing moments. Judas benefitted from provisional and social blessings that came from being associated with Christ. But, at the moment Judas had to decide whether he was truly in or truly out, he chose to not believe and not to claim the promises of Christ and his end was destruction.
Do you have a selling price? Is there something you ultimately crave so bad that if were offered you might choose it over Christ? Is there something you ultimately fear so much that if you could escape it by denying Christ, you would? Each day, there are true believers in Jesus who turn down a job, refuse the cash, disappoint their kids… oh, yes and face not just being made fun of, but death because they have made the forever choice that Jesus Christ is the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords, the only Son of God and Savior of the World!
Is Jesus your association… or your life? If Jesus is only someone you are associated with, do you really think that there is anything that will compare to being forgiven of your sins and standing next to Him in eternity forever? Why not opt out of your association and into a total “buy in” to the life changing truth that Jesus Christ loves you, died to take away your sins, and can and will enable you to fulfill your purpose on earth and take your eternal place in heaven.
If Jesus is your life, give Him your praise and thanks. Declare to Him a “never ending commitment” to acknowledge Him no matter what offer to choose against Him might come. He is worthy of worship and praise.