Judas (Matthew 26) | Story

Judas Iscariot 
If you want the teachers page then please click on the image for the pdf.

Today’s hero is Judas Iscariot because he show us the gift of betrayal

Essential Teachers notes:
Some paint Judas as bad, others idealistic, it’s been argued he was a pawn moved about as much by Jesus’ plan as the powers that be, and that the blame he attributes himself is not his to own. This lesson takes a middle road, it paints Judas as someone misguided, mis-sold the truth and unable to fully grasp the alternatives that Jesus was offering. Although Judas comes to a grisly end (not included here) it’s important to note that most disciples misread Jesus’ message and his power, even the closest James and John spoke of having his right and left seats when he came into his kingdom!

Main Passage : Matthew 26
Additional passages : Luke 22, + other parallel passages

I wonder, have you ever made a mistake?
A big mistake?
I wonder if anything good came from that mistake?
I wonder, if you knew the future, would you still have made that mistake?

Today’s story is about a mistake. A huge one, but it turned out not to be a mistake at all or did it?
Today’s hero is called Judas Iscariot. Judas’ mistake was to betray Jesus.

Judas heard there were looking for ways to trap Jesus. Some men offered him 30 pieces of silver to help. He waited until there were no crowds and then lead the men to Jesus, he even showed them exactly who was Jesus by kissing Jesus on the cheek. Those men took Jesus away and eventually killed Jesus.

Why did Judas want to help these men? Jesus was his friend, Jesus had even chosen Judas as one of his special apostles. It doesn’t make sense….

Until you look at the bigger picture….

Judas had grown up being told a messiah was coming, a messiah who would would save his people. In the land where Judas and Jesus lived the Roman army had taken control, it makes sense that people thought the messiah would save them from the Romans. Then along comes Jesus, he talks about the Kingdom all the time, he must be the King in this Kingdom! Kings fought to defend their Kingdoms… Judas wondered when the war would start?

Perhaps Jesus needed a push in the right direction? They could arrest Jesus but he’d done nothing wrong, ever, so they couldn’t punish him… could they? Jesus being arrested could be the spark that started the fire? Perhaps Judas thought the people would rise up behind Jesus as their leader and fight?

Jesus always seemed to know what was going on before everybody else. That night, just before the meal, Jesus announced someone was going to betray him. Jesus looked straight at Judas, Jesus knew it would happen, but he never stopped Judas or asked him not to do it. Judas left the meal and went to get the men. Judas knew Jesus would go to the garden to pray later, it would be quiet there.

So Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss and they grabbed Jesus to take him away. But Jesus wasn’t alone, Peter pulled out a short sword to fight them off, he cut off one mans ear as he swung his blade about. Jesus shouted at Peter; “Stop, Put that away” and everyone stopped. Jesus gently reached towards the man and healed his ear. “No more of this” said Jesus sternly. “You didn’t need swords and guards, I was with you in the temple everyday teaching, you could have found me there.”

Suddenly Judas realised how big a mistake he had made. Jesus was not going to fight back, he wasn’t going to let anyone else fight either, not even his closest friends. He looked around, why did they need swords? Oh no, these people would not play fair. What had he done? Jesus was on his way to death and there was nothing Judas could do. Judas took the money and threw it at the feet of the men who had paid him, but it made no difference.

Unlike Judas we know the end of this story. We know that Jesus had to die, that Jesus was going to fight, and that Jesus would win the battle. Not a battle against the Romans or the Jewish leaders, but a battle against death itself!

Today’s hero is Judas Iscariot because he show us the gift of betrayal



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