Summary: Could it be me? Could I be the one who betrays Jesus? No matter how long we serve the Lord, there’s always a chance that we could fail.
Could it be Me?
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
On the night before Jesus’ crucifixion we find him in the upper room, with all of the disciples as they prepared for the last supper.
John 13:21-30, "When Jesus had thus said, he was troubled in spirit, and testified, and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me. Then the disciples looked one on another, doubting of whom he spake. Now there was leaning on Jesus’ bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved. Simon Peter therefore beckoned to him, that he should ask who it should be of whom he spake. He then lying on Jesus’ breast saith unto him, Lord, who is it? Jesus answered, He it is, to whom I shall give a sop, when I have dipped it. And when he had dipped the sop, he gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon. And after the sop Satan entered into him. Then said Jesus unto him, That thou doest, do quickly. Now no man at the table knew for what intent he spake this unto him. For some of them thought, because Judas had the bag, that Jesus had said unto him, Buy those things that we have need of against the feast; or, that he should give something to the poor. He then having received the sop went immediately out: and it was night."
None of us like that word “betray”. There’s no worse feeling in the world than to know that someone whom you thought you knew and that you could really trust, violates that trust and turns against you.
Marriages and relationships are often split and destroyed because of the betrayal of one against another. I think that all of us have experienced betrayal in one form or another.
When JESUS made this announcement, all the disciples wondered who he might be speaking about. They all tried to look like angels to each other. After all, this was an elite group. These were handpicked men, men who would be the first apostles of the church. They should have been above reproach. Surely it couldn’t be one of them. Or could it?
John was so close to JESUS he is leaning against Jesus and even he asks,
Hey LORD tell me who’s going to betray you?
Look closely and you will see that every one of them began to say, “is it me, LORD? Surely it can’t be me. Why I’m a disciple, a Preacher, an evangelist. I walk with you every day, “It surely cannot be me”.
In Matthew 26:25, we see that even Judas asked that question. "Then Judas, which betrayed him, answered and said, Master, is it I? …Judas knew the answer. He was still trying to put on a good front. But he was about to be exposed for the snake that he was.
Every single one of them, from John on down, all said the same thing, “I would never do that. There’s no way it could be me.”
(1) Simon Peter (the Rock) says it couldn’t be me because
I am a charter member – I’ve been with Jesus longer than any of the rest. I’m a good man and I am the Rock of this group. Why Jesus himself called me a stone, and that didn’t mean that I had a head as hard as a rock either. It meant that you can really count on me.
I am the security force of this little group. No one will fight off an enemy or stand up for Jesus as much as I will. I’m willing to fight to the death right now.
I am solid (Jesus knows that even if every one of you left him, I’d still be there. I will go with him all the way.) Yet only a few hours later Peter would be cursing the Lord and betraying him before the accusers outside of Pilate’s hall.
(2) James (the Martyr) says it couldn’t be me
I am in the inner circle. There’s Peter, John and myself. We are the most privileged of all. We have seen more, been with Jesus more and will see more than anyone else.
I am a giver and a faithful servant. Jesus knows that I would sacrifice everything for him. Yet James asked, “could it be me that betrays the Lord?”
(3) John (His name means gracious) wonders, “who could it be? Could it be me? Surely it couldn’t be me; anybody but me!”
I am closer to JESUS than any body. He knows how much I love him. Why should I betray the Lord? Why even right now I am the only one in this room who is in the perfect position, close enough to Jesus to talk to him face to face and ask this question. Surely Lord, it can’t be me who will betray you? Yet, even though John loved the Lord, he wasn’t sure that he was incapable of betraying Jesus.