Early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders of the people made their plans how to have Jesus executed. 2 So they bound him, led him away and handed him over to Pilate the governor.
3 When Judas, who had betrayed him, saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders. 4 “I have sinned,” he said, “for I have betrayed innocent blood.”
“What is that to us?” they replied. “That’s your responsibility.”
5 So Judas threw the money into the temple and left. Then he went away and hanged himself.
6 The chief priests picked up the coins and said, “It is against the law to put this into the treasury, since it is blood money.” 7 So they decided to use the money to buy the potter’s field as a burial place for foreigners. 8 That is why it has been called the Field of Blood to this day. 9 Then what was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet was fulfilled: “They took the thirty pieces of silver, the price set on him by the people of Israel, 10 and they used them to buy the potter’s field, as the Lord commanded me.”[a]
Judas Hangs Himself
I have sympathy for Judas, Jesus. I don’t know what drove him, but I know that you loved him. I know that so many of us get things wrong about you. I have thought of you in so many ways which are not worthy of you. I have underestimated you, misconstrued your motives, and I have just not given you the devotion you require for relationship. I see Judas and am afraid. I think that if I was one of the twelve, it could have been me. We know he betrayed you, but he wasn’t a twisted figure of overt evil salivating at the back of the line. He was like me. He wasn’t able to control his desire for money. He had his hands in the funds.
Lord have mercy on us. Help us not to start strong and have a life that is led astray by financial concerns. Let us not betray you with only a concern about what happens to us.
- Where did Judas return?
- Describe his reception.
- Why do you think we are shown the fate of Jesus’ betrayer?
- What is your personal reaction to Judas?
- How does a person today steer away from the fate of Judas?