Summary: An examination of the betrayal of Judas and the tragic fact that EVERY person will have a testimony...either for Christ or Satan.
CrossPoints – Part Nine
“The Deceptive Disciple”
John 18:1-7 • Page 766 • Dr. Larry L. Thompson (2002)
“When he had finished praying, Jesus left with his disciples and crossed the Kidron Valley. On the other side there was an olive grove, and he and his disciples went into it.  Now Judas, who betrayed him, knew the place, because Jesus had often met there with his disciples.  So Judas came to the grove, guiding a detachment of soldiers and some officials from the chief priests and Pharisees. They were carrying torches, lanterns and weapons.  Jesus, knowing all that was going to happen to him, went out and asked them, "Who is it you want?"  "Jesus of Nazareth," they replied. "I am he," Jesus said. (And Judas the traitor was standing there with them.)  When Jesus said, "I am he," they drew back and fell to the ground.  Again he asked them, "Who is it you want? "And they said, "Jesus of Nazareth.”
“Now Judas, who betrayed Him, knew the place, because Jesus had often met there with his disciples.” (18:2)
If there were but one message that I could share through the CROSSPOINT sermon series it would perhaps be this message. This is the message for those who act as if they are devoted disciples but in reality know in their heart, just as Judas knew; they are nothing but a deceptive disciple, a defective follower of Jesus Christ.
Today we focus our attention on what I call the “The Deceptive Discple!”
At the Last Supper we see Jesus telling the disciples that one of them would betray Him. The disciples immediately question themselves, “Is it I?” Finally Christ speaks and says the one I dip with in this bowl is the betrayer. Then Christ privately tells Judas, “Go and do what you must do.”
The Focus today is on the Pain…the pain of a man who betrayed Christ and the pain of Christ to know that one who claims to be a follower is nothing but a deceptive disciple and finally the pain that we may see in our own lives as we realize that we may be closer to a “Deceptive Disciple” than we are a “Devoted Disciple.”
So what went wrong with Judas? How did Judas move from being called as one of the 12 disciples who would devotedly give their life for the Gospel of Jesus…to a cowardly deceptive disciple that took his own life having understood he couldn’t live with the thought that he had betrayed “The Innocent Blood?” In order to understand how to identify a Deceptive Disciple we will turn our attention to Judas Iscariot, the betrayer.
Judas was a handpicked disciple of Jesus Christ: a Proclaimer of the truth, a healer of the sick, a traveling companion of Jesus. He was so respected and trusted among the disciples that he was made treasurer of the Twelve. He wasn’t elected to the position - Jesus personally chose Judas for the job.
The Augustine tradition says this about Judas: “Jesus had delivered Judas often from death, and for his sake healed his father of palsy and cured his mother of leprosy, and next to Peter, Jesus honored Judas above all the other apostles.”
Yet ‘The Devoted Disciple’ is revealed to be nothing more than ‘The Deceptive Disciple’ – with the tragic revelation of the, “a kiss of death!” Judas led the wild mob of Roman guards and Jewish officers to the garden, where he identified Christ with a kiss. After the kiss, Jesus looked into Judas’ eyes and said in Luke 22:48: “…Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?” Jesus was saying, "Is this really how you would betray me, Judas - with a kiss, a sign of love and affection?" This is nothing more than the ultimate act of hypocrisy.
Judas’ betrayal of Jesus was so heinous, so diabolical, that one early church father said: “It would have been good if there had been only one Judas.”
But the truth is the world is full of Judas followers, The Deceptive Disciples! The church still witnesses the betrayal of Jesus Christ every day. The spirit of Judas is very much alive in the hearts of many former followers of Christ - and within the walls of the church as well! I have a frightening proposal to ask you: Could you be a Deceptive Disciple, a traitor to Christ and not know it? Have you sold out Jesus and betrayed Him? Traitors are those who once were loyal to the one they betray. Only those within the camp can be traitors. ONLY THOSE WHO FAIL TO RECEIVE TRUTH WILL BE TRAITORS.
There are two facts I want to share with you about Judas. They may surprise you - but please do not take them lightly. I believe they were given to me by the Holy Spirit as a warning for every one of us who hears this TRUTH of GOD’S word proclaimed today.