6 Question 2

While the Lord Jesus walked the earth, He chose twelve men to accompany Him in His ministry.  They were a diverse group, but each one chosen of the Lord.  Luke 6:13-16 – “And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also he named apostles; Simon, (whom he also named Peter,) and Andrew his brother, James and John, Philip and Bartholomew, Matthew and Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon called Zelotes, And Judas the brother of James, and Judas Iscariot, which also was the traitor.”  Did Jesus know that Judas was a traitor and would betray Him?  He certainly did!  John 6:70-71 says, “Jesus answered them, Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil?  He spake of Judas Iscariot the son of Simon: for he it was that should betray him, being one of the twelve.”

So, it’s true that the Lord knew Judas’ heart and knew that Judas would betray him.  Consider Matthew 26:21-25, which says, “And as they did eat, he said, Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me. And they were exceeding sorrowful, and began every one of them to say unto him, Lord, is it I? And he answered and said, He that dippeth his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me.  The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born. Then Judas, which betrayed him, answered and said, Master, is it I? He said unto him, Thou hast said.”  Of course, Judas knew he would betray the Lord.  By this time, he had already bargained with the chief priests to betray the Lord for thirty pieces of silver. Let’s look at Matthew 26:14-16 – “Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went unto the chief priests, And said unto them, What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you? And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver. And from that time he sought opportunity to betray him.”

So, why did Judas betray the Lord Jesus into the hands of the chief priests for thirty pieces of silver?  Well, Judas, while chosen of the Lord and living alongside the other apostles did not truly believe in the Lord Jesus as the only begotten son of God.  John 6:63-64 says – “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.”  We also know that Judas, while he was the treasurer of the apostles, was a thief.  John 12:3-6 says, “Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment. Then saith one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, which should betray him, Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?  This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.”

So, Judas was not a true believer on the Lord and he was a thief.  It seems he had fooled all the other apostles.  When the Lord told them that one of them would betray Him, none of the apostles accused Judas of being the one.  The portion we just read in John 12:3-6 about Judas being a thief was written in retrospect by the Apostle John, so we have no indication that the other apostles ever suspected Judas.

There seems to be some debate over whether Judas went to Heaven or Hell after he betrayed the Lord.  Some have read Matthew 27:3-4 and thought that Judas repented of his evil deed.  Let’s read that.  Matthew 27:3-4 says, “Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us? see thou to that.”  It certainly seemed to sadden Judas when he realized the results of his betrayal.  However, looking closely at his confession, we see that Judas fell short of a Godly repentance.  His words were, “I have betrayed the innocent blood.”  He realized the Lord Jesus was innocent of all the charges leveled against him.  While not believing in the Lord Jesus as the Son of God, Judas could certainly see that the Lord Jesus was a righteous and good man that did not deserve to be condemned.  Judas did not say that he had betrayed the Holy Son of God; just that he had betrayed an innocent man.  That is not repentance towards God, and that is not salvation.

As an unsaved man, Judas was subject to the influence and possession of Satan.  Twice, we read that Satan entered into Judas.  Luke 22:3 says, “Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve.” Then again in John 13:27 we read, “And after the sop Satan entered into him. Then said Jesus unto him, That thou doest, do quickly.”  I encourage you to read both of these verses and their passages so that you can get a better understanding of what was going on in each instance.  It seems that after using Judas for his purposes, Satan abandoned Judas to his own remorse.  Of course, his remorse led him to hang himself as we read in Matthew 27:5 – “And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself.”

In Acts, chapter one, we find the eleven remaining disciples looking to the Lord to show them who should take Judas’ place as an apostle.  We have these words in Acts 1:24-25 – “And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, shew whether of these two thou hast chosen, That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.”  In reference to Judas, this addresses his eternal dwelling place.  Let’s listen to the Lord’s words in the upper room just prior to His betrayal and crucifixion in Matthew 26:24 – “The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.”  There can be no doubt that Judas entered into eternal torment at his death.

Judas betrayed the Lord because he was a thief.  He went into a lost eternity because he was not a believer on the Lord Jesus.  What about you?  Are you like Judas?  Have you heard of the Lord Jesus, heard of His glory and His love, even seen His work in the salvation of others, but still have never trusted in him as your savior?  You can be sure that the Lord loves you, but you can also be sure that the Lord is righteous and he will judge sin.  If you have never accepted the Lord Jesus as your savior, you are still in your sins and one day the Lord will judge you in complete righteousness.  Not mercy, but righteousness.  We read this in Acts 17:31 – “Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.”  One day God will judge the world, and if you are in your sins, you will face God in a righteous judgment of sin.  He will not spare.  He will not show mercy.  You do not want to face a righteous God in your sins.  Hebrews 10:31 says, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.”  Right now, won’t you bow your knee to the Lord and believe in Him as your savior?  Romans 10:9 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”  If you would like to talk to someone about your salvation, just get in touch with us at answersfromthebook@gmail.com.  We would love to talk to you and show you from the Word of God how you can be saved.  Don’t put this off…eternity is closer than you think.  (6.2)