Summary: In teaching about Judas' betrayal of Jesus, we learn about how to handle it ourselves
Anatomy of Betrayal
CCCAG April 2, 2017
Scripture: John 13:21-30
One of the most famous betrayals in history was the betrayal of Julius Caesar. Julius Caesar was a general and politician in Rome during it’s years of being a Republic prior to becoming an empire. He is responsible for conquering parts of Germania and France and even had a few excursions into the British Iles.
After a great deal of drama and political strife, Caesar led his army into the city of Rome, and wrestled power away from the current leader, Pompey, and set himself up as the Dictator of Rome. This initially was not a normal dictatorship where a person rules for life, but one that was elected on a yearly basis.
Initially, this move was very popular with the people. He was a much loved figure, and for the most part his rule was fair.
Then Caesar got the Roman senate to declare him Dictator for life.
This was very concerning to many of the senators who valued the freedom that Rome represented being a democratically elected government. They formed a conspiracy that assassinated Caesar on March 15th, 44 BC. The Ides of March if you remember your high school reading.
These events were immortalized in William Shakespeare’s play that we all probably had to read in High School.
I read the account of this assignation from a historian that said Julius Caesar, being a soldier and general before he became a politician, fought back against his assassins ferociously, until he saw the face of his friend Brutus. Seeing the face of his most loved friend, and faced with this betrayal, it is said that Caesar cast his robe over his head allowing the knives to fall while uttering the famous Latin words, “Et Tu Brute?”
Even you Brutus? Caesar couldn’t face the betrayal of one of his closest friends, and let the knives fall.
I was reminded of this incident this week when I was reading about Judas Iscariot.
What immediately comes to your mind when you hear that name-
Traitor- traitors are always evil!
Benedict Arnold- served the British against Americans
Richard Ried- the shoe bomber
Julius and Ethel Rosenberg- sold the secrets of the nuclear bomb to the Soviets
Even considering all of these people,
Judas’ betrayal of Jesus dwarfs them. Judas betrayed God Himself for his own selfish gain.
Or was that the only reason?
Let’s read this morning from John’s account of the moment Judas decides to betray Jesus-
21 After he had said this, Jesus was troubled in spirit and testified, “Very truly I tell you, one of you is going to betray me.”
22 His disciples stared at one another, at a loss to know which of them he meant. 23 One of them, the disciple whom Jesus loved, was reclining next to him. 24 Simon Peter motioned to this disciple and said, “Ask him which one he means.”
25 Leaning back against Jesus, he asked him, “Lord, who is it?”
26 Jesus answered, “It is the one to whom I will give this piece of bread when I have dipped it in the dish.” Then, dipping the piece of bread, he gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot. 27 As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him.