Bible Reference: Luke 22:47-48
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)
Bible Text: 47 No sooner had he finished speaking when suddenly a mob approached, and right in front of the mob was his disciple Judas. He walked up close to Jesus and greeted him with a kiss. For he had agreed to give the religious leaders a sign, saying, “The one I kiss is the one to seize.” 48 Jesus looked at him with sorrow and said, “A kiss, Judas? Are you really going to betray the Son of Man with a kiss?”
OBSERVATION: A story that we’ve read and/or heard many times, yet the Holy Spirit will challenge you each time that you read it again. I bolded a statement that I was challenged with today as I read this Scripture. I trust that as we meditate on this, we might ponder what actions we take individually in betraying, or denying our Lord.
APPLICATION: Betrayal is one of the most painful human experiences. Discovering that someone we trusted has deeply hurt us pulls the reality rug from under us. We might look at Judas and wonder how could he possibly betray his Lord after seeing Him heal the sick; bring the dead back to life; feed the 5,000; show love to the unlovable; and sit down at the table with he and the other 11 disciples. Why Jesus even showed deep humility in washing the disciples’ feet. Yet for a small bag of coins, and a moment of recognition by the religious leaders, Judas escaped the reality of a loving Savior and joined the side of the enemy to crucify Jesus. I couldn’t help but ponder what we would feel like if Jesus looked into our eyes and asked the same question of us. Will you betray me with ______ Ed? Friends, we may not be in the same position as Judas, where we are selling out to the religious leaders, but I’m afraid that there are times that we hide our relationship with the Master. Perhaps in a public setting known for their stand against religious lingo, or Christian practices; Perhaps in the presence of government officials who are bombarded by fellow representatives who frequently speak of the separation of church and state; Perhaps just in a public setting, like a restaurant, where others may steer at you if you pause to give thanks for your food. I believe that anytime we fail to recognize Jesus in all walks of life, or are embarrassed to claim Him as your Lord and Savior, you are betraying the trust that He expects from you. Can you imagine hanging on a cross half naked and beaten to a pulp, because it was His way of displaying His ultimate love for us? Imagine if He would have backed out of that, because we were just not worth the pain it would cause our Lord? How would you feel about Him? Friends, is there anything you wouldn’t do in return for our Savior’s love and the provision of salvation made possible just for us? For Judas, it was a simple, everyday kiss that told the whole story of denial for him. What is it for you?
PRAYER: Precious Lord, thank You for never backing down on Your commitment to Your Father. Thank You for always loving us, and Your willingness to even be crucified just for us. Please touch our hearts today with a renewed sense of boldness and love for You. May our commitment to serving You be so strong that nothing will ever separate us from the love of God. Yes, we want to please our friends, please our government leaders, and be a noble citizen, but please give us the strength to never do any of that at the expense of serving You and being true to our commitment in loving You for all eternity. Oh that others may see Your love in us today and want to know You personally, before it’s too late. AMEN!