Judas really didn’t have a lot going for him and history has not remembered him well. His name has been synonymous with treachery for the last two thousand years. But there he was among Jesus’s most trusted inner circle of twelve. So if the very first group of disciples who Jesus trusted, trained and sent out to make disciples who make disciples contained a man like Judas Iscariot, why would we be surprised to find hard hearted, spiritually deaf and blind Christians evenly woven throughout the fabric of the church today? Non believers the world over, alongside angry and isolated Christians who have turned away from the church in their droves, cry out in unified protest against the contradictions and abuses that are so plainly evident in the church. My point is simply this: Jesus loved Judas and included him in his closest circle. Judas played a crucial rôle in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. Who are we to judge him or those like him in our churches today. Who are we to gauge their worth to the Lord?
John 12:1-6 NLT
Six days before the Passover celebration began, Jesus arrived in Bethany, the home of Lazarus —the man he had raised from the dead. A dinner was prepared in Jesus’s honour. Martha served, and Lazarus was among those who ate with him. Then Mary took a twelve-ounce jar of expensive perfume made from essence of nard, and she anointed Jesus’s feet with it, wiping his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance.
But Judas Iscariot, the disciple who would soon betray him, said, “That perfume was worth a year’s wages. It should have been sold and the money given to the poor.” Not that he cared for the poor —he was a thief, and since he was in charge of the disciples’ money, he often stole some for himself.
Judas was like one of those “holier than thou” Christians we all know. He could talk the talk but utterly failed to walk the walk. My goal today is two-fold. I pray I might find a new and compassionate love for those hypocritical, “holier than thou” Christians I know. And secondly, I pray that I might acknowledge my own failure to be all that Jesus has taught me to be. I pray that I might remember that Jesus thinks I am worthy to be his disciple despite my obvious and constant failure to live up to the task.
1 Samuel 29:1-31:13, John 11:55-12:19, Psalms 118:1-18, Proverbs 15:24-26