15 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.
16 And from that time he sought opportunity to betray him.
Today is called “Spy Wednesday” for obvious reasons. We will never really know why Judas betrayed Jesus. We know he did it for money, but was money enough to explain betraying a close friend and companion? We know that he regretted what he did, but instead of asking for forgiveness, he went out and hanged himself after giving back the money. Perhaps he wasn’t fully aware of what the chief priests had planned. Is this a good enough reason to justify his actions?
I know that there have been times in my life that I haven’t been aware of the consequences of my decisions. Sometimes the damage caused was minor and other times the unseen consequences caused damage that could not be rectified. We all make choices every day and some of them may result in damage to ourselves or others. The person who had that extra drink before driving didn’t know that his delayed reactions would cost a mother her life. The choice to spread rumors could cost an employee her job.
There are so many opportunities to get ourselves into trouble and they usually begin with thinking about what we want, and not what is good for someone else. There’s a saying, “Act in haste; repent at leisure.” This is what happens when we speak or act before we think. When these things happen, we are also betraying Jesus. We may not be handing him over to the chief priests to be killed, but our sins are a part of the burden that Jesus bore on the cross.
May we examine our hearts and ask forgiveness for the times our thoughtless actions have caused pain to others. As Jesus forgave us, let us also be willing to forgive those who have caused us pain.
Loving Father, you would have forgiven even Judas if he had only asked. Forgive us for the times when we have sinned against you and others. Amen.