Summary: The Materialism of Judas (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Reading: John chapter 12 verses 1-11.
• Each year since 1970 at Madam Tussaud’s Wax Museum in London;
• Thousands of international visitors are asked a question.
• They are asked to name which person, past or present, real or fictional
• That they hated or feared the most.
• The name that has topped the list the most number of times has been Adolph Hitler,
• This past couple of years it has been Osama Bin Laden.
• But through the years the list has included Idi Amin, Richard Nixon, Margaret Thatcher,
• Jack the Ripper, Liam Gallagher (front man for the British rock band Oasis).
One made who has never made the list was Judas Iscariot:
• Even though he commited the greatest act of betrayal for a human being to do;
• He is the man who betrayed Jesus Christ, the son of God, King of Kings, Lord of Lords.
• ill: His name is synonymous with betrayal.
• None of the other eleven disciples made Collins English Dictionary,
• But Judas did!
• Ill: Collins defines Judas as “Judas Iscariot, the disciple who betrayed Jesus, a traitor or betrayer.”
• Ill: The dictionary also tells us that a "Judas kiss";
• Is a false expression of affection.
• Ill: And that a "Judas hole";
• Is a hidden slit in the wall through which guards spy on prisoners.
• Judas is a great name, it means: ‘Praise’.
• Yet as a result of this one man, nobody ever names their baby Judas!
• For that matter you might remember;
• That Jesus younger brother’s name was Judas Mark chapter 6 verse 3).
• But when he wrote the letter that would eventually become a part of our New Testament
• He used the diminutive of his name which was Jude.
• Now we don’t read the books of I I and II and III Jack,
• So why was it that Judas felt that he had to shorten his name to Jude?
• Answer is simple:
• Because he didn’t want to be identified with Judas Iscariot...............would you?
(1). His Name:
• When it comes to Judas Iscariot, we don’t really know all that much about him,
• We do know that his father was Simon.
• We do know that his surname Iscariot was a combination of two Hebrew words;
• ‘Ish’ and ‘Kariot’, which would then be translated, ‘Man of Kariot’.
• The city of Kerioth belonged to the tribe of Judah (Joshua 15:25).
• And was in the South. (Cariot) was a city in Judea 12 miles south of Hebron
• This would mean Judas was probably the only disciple who was not a Galilean;
• The others were all northerners, but Judas was a southerner!
• Ill: You may have Noticed that in all of the lists of the names of the twelve disciples,
• Peter is always listed first and Judas Iscariot always last.
(2). His motive.
In most films about the life of Jesus;
• Judas is often pictured as a political figure, a nationalist, a disillusioned zealot.
• He is often portrayed as betraying Jesus to force him to politically ‘come out’;
• To force the hand of Jesus to establish his kingdom on earth.
• I cannot find that insight in the scripture;
In fact there is only one motive that consistently reveals itself in the gospels;
• One motive for his betrayal of Jesus;
• In verse 6 of our reading we are told (John chapter 12) that;
• Judas was the treasurer of the group of disciples.
• We are told that one of his jobs was to distribute money to the poor;
• (John chapter 12 verses 5 hints at this and chapter 13 verses 29 confirms it).
• Notice with hindsight; John is able to record;
• That Judas had been pilfering money out of the treasury:
• “He was a thief, and as he had the money box, he used to pilfer what was put into it"
• (John chapter 12 verse 6).
• John chapter 12 verse 4:
• When Mary is worshipping Jesus by giving to him expensive perfume.
• It was an extravagant act of love that Mary was demonstrating;
• The ointment was worth a year's wages, this was a costly act!
• All Judas was thinking about was not the Lord but the money;
• Judas' question is really quite telling; "Why this waste?" (Matthew 26:8)
• He has no appreciation of her act of worship;
• He is thinking about what a year's wages would have done for the treasury; & of course Judas!
• Matthew chapter 26 verse 15;
• Judas was given a bribe of 30 pieces of silver to betray Jesus;