Jesus is participating in the final meal He would have with His disciples before His crucifixion. In this last supper with them, He would take the opportunity to teach His disciples valuable lessons they would need to learn to enable them to carry on, after His ascension into heaven, the ministry He had started.
Though it would prove to be a momentous event in the history of the church, it was marred by one black moment, one moment of betrayal that would set in motion the events that would lead to our Savior’s extreme suffering and death on an instrument of torture, the cross.
This betrayal was by no means the only one that Jesus would witness. As His influence multiplied, the leaders of the church would turn on Him, more interested in their quest to maintain their authority over the people then in opening their minds to the possibility that Jesus was the true Messiah.
As He entered Jerusalem by the East Gate with palms waved and cloaks strewn before Him, he knew He would soon be greeted by the sounds of betrayal from some of the people who were now cheering Him, as they exchanged their cries of “Hosanna” for cries of “crucify Him!”
As He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane, the stillness in the air would be broken by the arrival of those who came to arrest Him, guided by one who Jesus called friend. With a kiss Judas would betray His master. For thirty pieces of silver, He would condemn Him to die.
As the tension rose in the garden, those who followed Him in His earthly ministry would scatter. Though picked by Jesus Christ Himself, they would find their faith falter when He needed them most.
Betrayal was certainly not limited to the time in which Jesus walked the earth. For all time before Him and for all times since, betrayal has tarnished almost every life. This trend will unfortunately continue as Jesus prophesied concerning the end of times in Matthew 24: 9-10, “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another.”
From the serpents first lies to the final days before God issues in a new heaven and a new earth, betrayal will play its part because of sin. Even the Savior of all could not escape its darkened shadow.
But that fate doesn’t have to defeat us. Though people will always be at times undependable, untrustworthy, and unworthy, our God will always remain true. His love for us will never waver, His concern for us will never weaken and His plans for us will never change. He will never betray us, though at times we will test His patience by our unfaithfulness.
God made Abram a promise saying, “I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Genesis 12:3). God was good to that promise, and He has been good to every promise He has made since.
He didn’t let our undependability, our untrustworthiness and our unworthiness stand in the way. Rather, He saw the miracle in each one of us and gave His only Son so that He could take all of that upon Himself. Because he made us a promise never to forsake us, he provided a way to salvation. He had every right to betray that promise, but He proved that His love was real.
Now the challenge is upon us. Will we betray our Creator by listening to the devils lies or will we remain vigilant in faith despite His temptations? Will we trust in our God when He says that blessings will fall among the faithful or will we look for blessings to be bestowed by the corrupt gods of the earth?
If your choice is to live apart from betrayal, follow the Lord’s advice: “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm” (Ephesians 6:10-13). Please pray with me:
Heavenly Father, thank you for never letting us down or betraying us in our times of need. Help us to do like wise towards You and keep us in Your grace. Amen.