March 11, 2013

Luke 6:12-16     Introducing Judas Iscariot

Judas Iscariot is the most notorious and universally scorned of all the disciples. He was the betrayer and the traitor. He is the most colossal failure in all of human history because he committed the most horrible, heinous act of any individual. He betrayed the perfect, sinless, holy Son of God for a handful of money. Judas spent three years in with Christ. He witnessed the miracles, he heard the teaching, and he knew the heart and purpose of Jesus. But all the while, his heart was growing cold and hard. Judas' dark story is a poignant example of the depths to which the human heart is capable of sinking. Judas was never transformed by faith like the other disciples. All of them were sinners, yet he refused the grace and redemption Christ offered.

His name is ironic. Judas is a form of "Judah" and means "Jehovah leads." His parents must have had high hopes for their boy's future and for him to be led by God. The irony is that no individual was ever more clearly led by Satan than Judas. Iscariot signifies the region he came from. The rest of the disciples were from Galilee, but Judas probably came from Kerioth, a Judean town.