Acts 1:15-20 – “And at this time Peter stood up in the midst of the brethren (a gathering of about one hundred and twenty persons was there together), and said, 16 “Brethren, the Scripture had to be fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit foretold by the mouth of David concerning Judas, who became a guide to those who arrested Jesus. 17 “For he was counted among us, and received his portion in this ministry.” 18(Now this man acquired a field with the price of his wickedness; and falling headlong, he burst open in the middle and all his bowels gushed out. 19 And it became known to all who were living in Jerusalem; so that in their own language that field was called Hakeldama, that is, Field of Blood.) 20 “For it is written in the book of Psalms, ‘Let his homestead be made desolate, And let no man dwell in it’; and, ‘His office let another man take.’” NASB
In the last devotional we discussed Judas’ right beginning and identified that he had what it takes to succeed. Today I ask that you indulge me as we press a little deeper into this Lesson in Losing.
JUDAS ALLOWED SIN TO ENTER HIS LIFE…
Sin becomes a taskmaster when permitted to take root in the life. Jesus addressed this in John 8:34 – “…whoever commits sin is the servant of sin.” Paul emphasized this truth in Romans 6:16 – “Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness?”
Man is in one of two camps in this life. He is either in the Camp or Family of God or in the Camp of the devil. It is a matter of being lost or saved and there is no middle ground. Even though Judas had enjoyed fellowship with Jesus he turned from that calling and began to allow the devil to guide his life.
He gave place to the devil. How many times have we either thought or heard, “a little won’t hurt”? I am all for moderation but there is no moderation in sin. Judas failed to deal with covetousness in his own heart. He permitted sin to go unchecked and it gained control of his thoughts and his heart. He became a faultfinder as he tried to hide the blackness of his own heart. It could easily be argued that he experienced the pangs of jealousy and became envious. Sin is deceitful and always tries to hide itself. It attempts to elevate itself by lowering others. Romans 6:23 reveals that sin has wages and its wages are death. There is always a payday for sin.
JUDAS GOT HIS PAYDAY…
Whatever it was that drove him to his decision to become a traitor to our Lord brought about his destruction. It may have been greed, covetousness, jealousy or something else but he became an instrument of the devil. He may have been rebuked by Jesus or one of the other apostles and experienced a wounded pride. I do not know what caused him to turn back but he did.
The material payment for his sin was 30 pieces of silver. That payment brought him guilt that he could not hide. It produced a regret and awareness that drove him to suicide. Shame and guilt will do incredible harm in any life. He traded his hope of heaven for 30 pieces of silver and what could be assumed as an eternity in hell. He was forever stripped of what he could have had and been. All because he gave place to the devil. He allowed sin to enter and take root in his life. Sin must be dealt with and no sin should be left unconfessed or unrepented of.
Judas got far more than he bargained for. Satan is a liar and only tells partial truths. Judas got caught in the devil’s trap and sold out for a small portion of money. Tragically, some trade their souls for less. It may be pleasure, power, position, prestige, or something else but nothing is worth our souls… (Mark 8:37).
Today is the day of salvation. The promise of Jesus is that He is willing to forgive if we will come in repentance and believe! I don’t know where you are spiritually. You may be in a backslidden condition or never have received Christ as Savior. If you will call upon Him, He has promised to both hear you and receive you.
God bless you as you enjoy this wonderful day in Him!