April 5, 2023

Matthew 26:20–25 (NKJV)

20 When evening had come, He sat down with the twelve.

21 Now as they were eating, He said, “Assuredly, I say to you, one of you will betray Me.”

22 And they were exceedingly sorrowful, and each of them began to say to Him, “Lord, is it I?”

23 He answered and said, “He who dipped his hand with Me in the dish will betray Me.

24 The Son of Man indeed goes 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.”

25 Then Judas, who was betraying Him, answered and said, “Rabbi, is it I?” He said to him, “You have said it.”

Ash Wednesday. It is customary in some denominations of Christianity to receive a mark of ashes on the forehead in the shape of a cross. The ashes are made from burned palms of the previous year’s Palm Sunday. This is a reminder to Christians of their mortality and the need to repent and seek forgiveness for their sins.

Judas was given the opportunity to confess his sin and repent. He did not, instead, he got up and ran to betray Jesus!

Buried deep in the heart of Judas was a sin, a sin of betrayal. Maybe in the eyes of many the betrayal by Judas was the worst of all sins. But I wonder how often we betray Jesus in our lives.

Romans 10:9–10 states “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”

Judas confessed with his mouth his belief in Jesus but his heart was far from belief. In his heart he betrayed Jesus. We must look at our own heart, our own life, our own confession. Judas was a hypocrite. Many might say a charlatan. A charlatan is a swindler practicing a confidence game, trickery in order to obtain money, power, or other advantages. Whatever Judas’ motive was, he betrayed Jesus. He may have deceived others but there were two he could not deceive, himself and Jesus.

This is true in our own lives. We must ask when we speak of Jesus being our Savior and Lord of our lives is it just words coming from our mouth or are our words truly coming from our heart.