Betrayal Or Portrayal
It's Easter week. A week to remember the greatest love story every told. And every good love story has an element of conflict or betrayal, right? When you think about betrayal in the Easter story, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Judas. He was in Jesus' inner circle, walking beside Him for three years; how could he possibly betray Jesus? He was a sell-out, literally. He used his close connection to lead the accusers to where Jesus would be in exchange for 30 pieces of silver. And on top of it all, he chose to identify Jesus to the crowd by kissing him, thus taking the betrayal and making it even more personal and intimate.
Why did Judas do it?
In #ec1dot22 we discussed a few theories as to why Judas would have betrayed Jesus. I brought up one I had heard years ago in a sermon. This was before sermons were readily available via podcast, so unfortunately I cannot find the exact words the preacher used; however, I did find a similar opinion as to why Judas would betray Jesus. The line of thinking is that Judas never intended for things to play out the way they did, but rather hoped that this would be the catalyst for the overthrowing of the Roman government. I'm not saying this is accurate, none of us know exactly what was going on in Judas' mind in the days leading up to his betrayal. This theory, however, did resonate with me for some reason. Maybe because it is hard to imagine that someone who was that close to Jesus — the King of Kings and Lord of Lords — would ever choose to betray Him.
Listen to our entire conversation.
He wasn't the only one.
Judas may have turned Jesus over to His accusers, but he wasn't the only one who turned his back on Jesus that night. Remember Peter? Jesus told Peter "this very night, before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times." (Matthew 26:34 ESV) Peter was shocked by the accusation, denying it immediately. I probably would have denied it too; I mean, it's Jesus — the King of Kings and Lord of Lords — why would anyone deny Him, right?
Later that night we see that Jesus was correct and Peter did deny him not once, but three times. Reading that story, maybe you too can relate to Peter's dilemma. He just witnessed Jesus' capture and is surrounded by an angry crowd now fearing for his own life. If you were in the same situation, would you have denied knowing Him?
Betraying Jesus On The Daily
In #ec1dot22, Josh and Sean mentioned how we "betray Jesus on the daily." I can't speak for anyone but myself; I know there have been times where I played down my belief in Jesus to fit in. I have kept my mouth shut when other people were speaking out against God. I have in many ways betrayed Jesus and turned my back on all He has done for me. One definition of betrayal is "to be false or disloyal to." I can honestly and regretfully say that I have betrayed Jesus.
I'm beginning to realize that in those moments I have a choice, I can betray Jesus or I can portray Him. One definition of portrayal is "to describe or represent in words." What it all comes down to is that we can either be disloyal to Him or we can represent Him. I'm not perfect and I am sure that I will probably betray Jesus again. My hope is that I will learn to live my life in such a way that I am portraying Jesus on the daily.