Remember Judas

Judas
Judas Repentant, Returning the Thirty Pieces of Silver by Rembrandt

Matthew 27:3

I wonder what Judas thought. He changed his mind when he saw that Jesus was condemned. What was he thinking? Did he think the Jewish rulers merely wanted a word with Christ?

He cheapened Christ, betraying him for thirty pieces of silver. He obviously saw no value in Christ beyond the monetary gain he could derive from him. In fact, he had been at this before the thought of betrayal crept into his mind. For he had been stealing from the common purse (John 12:4-6).

Judas loved money, and probably nothing else. No wonder Jesus himself warned that we cannot serve God and money (Matthew 6:24). If we love one, we would despise the other. If we love material wealth, we could either cheapen and despise God, like Judas did to Christ. Or we could simply convert him to a tool to help us get more money.

Alternatively, if we love God, we would see money as a means for serving God and others. We would give it away and not hoard it. We wouldn’t put our trust in it. Neither would we build our identity and value on it.

Judas eventually realized his worldview was flawed, but it was too late. He wanted to redeem himself by returning the price he was paid, but it didn’t work. Out of despair, he killed himself. A sad ending to a false life.

We need not go the way of Judas. A choice is placed before us: Christ or Wealth. The pursuit of wealth is a dead end; it destroys. The pursuit of God through Christ brings life and peace.

May we choose wisely.

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