4/7/2020 Lenten Luminaries

Posted on Apr 7, 2020 by
[Reclining at table with his disciples, Jesus was deeply troubled and testified,
“Amen, amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me.”
The disciples looked at one another, at a loss as to whom he meant.
One of his disciples, the one whom Jesus loved,
was reclining at Jesus’ side.
So Simon Peter nodded to him to find out whom he meant.
He leaned back against Jesus’ chest and said to him,
“Master, who is it?”
Jesus answered,
“It is the one to whom I hand the morsel after I have dipped it.”
So he dipped the morsel and took it and handed it to Judas,
son of Simon the Iscariot.
After Judas took the morsel, Satan entered him.  So Jesus said to Him, “What you are going to do, do quickly.”]  (Jn. 13:21-27)
Today we again see Jesus eating a meal with a group of His friends–the twelve Apostles at the Last Supper.  It can be easy to view Judas’s betrayal as just a guy who betrayed Jesus.  However that is not at all the case.  Judas was one of Jesus’s chosen apostles and one of His closest friends.  Judas even sat next to Jesus at the table.
So it wasn’t just a random person who betrayed Jesus, but one of His closest friends.  Jesus is God and so He knew Judas would betray Him.  Even so, Jesus still called Judas His friend.  Jesus does the same things with us.  He calls us His friends (cf. Jn. 15:15-17).  Yet, so often we, His friends, betray Him by our words and actions.   We hand Jesus over to be “crucified” again and again.  We betray His friendship.
Many times we look at Judas with utter disgust thinking, “How could you betray your friend?  How could you send your friend to darn near certain death?”  Yet, we must remember that we are not all that different from Judas.  Take some time today and pose those questions you’d ask Judas yourself.  How could I betray my friend?  How could I send my friend to darn near certain death?