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Jul 5 / Chuck Smith, Jr.

Day Eighty-three – Matthew 26:14-25

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you

The Son of Man is to go, just as it is written of Him; but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been good for that man if he had not been born. Matthew 26:24

The life of Judas would make an interesting documentary. Where was he born? Who were his parents and how did they raise him? Was he teased and bullied by other children? What were his personal struggles? Was he insecure in life and feel pressured to grasp at money? How did he meet Jesus and why did he choose to become a disciple? What made him the sort of person who would betray Jesus?

The purpose of the documentary would not be to portray Judas as a victim of his circumstances who could not do anything other than what he did–after all, any of the disciples could have played his role, for one by one they each asked Jesus, “Surely not I, Lord?” Rather, we would want to know if Judas ever saw a glimmer of the truth of Jesus, felt a twinge of joy when people were healed, or for a moment was enthralled by Jesus’ message. In his last action, did Judas put an end to a miserable life, a happy one, or a mediocre one?

What a contrast between Jesus and Judas! “That man” sitting next to “the Son of Man.” While the Son of Man would soon go, it would have been better for that man had he never been born. Was Jesus seriously sad for Judas? Was the Lord making one final appeal to him? giving him one last warning?

In humble reverence, we thank You Jesus for never giving up on us. We who have betrayed You in thought or deed, who have turned from Your will to our own, and have given other loves the devotion that is Yours alone. Find in our hearts a reward for Your suffering. Set Your flame to our love and make it pure, breathe on our faith and make it strong. May we belong to You completely today, tomorrow, and forever.

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