Summary: A look at Jesus’ warning to beware the darkness and realizing that it was at dark when Judas betrayed Him.
“When Darkness Falls”
*God was moving in a mighty way at a church in Florida. At one point during a service, an image of the face of Jesus appeared on the wall behind the pulpit. The people were amazed and many people were saved and added to the Kingdom as a result of the manifest presence of the Lord. Word spread quickly, and people traveled from all around to see the face of Jesus.
Then one of the Twelve—the one called Judas Iscariot—went to the chief priests and asked, “What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?” So they counted out for him thirty silver coins. From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over.
Now the feast of Unleavened Bread, called the Passover, was approaching, and the chief priests and the teachers of the law were looking for some way to get rid of Jesus, for they were afraid of the people. Then Satan entered Judas, called Iscariot, one of the Twelve. And Judas went to the chief priests and the officers of the temple guard and discussed with them how he might betray Jesus. They were delighted and agreed to give him money. He consented, and watched for an opportunity to hand Jesus over to them when no crowd was present.
*Judas was enraged at the act of worship displayed by Mary. He had been around the Light of Life for 3+ years, but had never allowed the Light to shine in his heart. He held to the darkness within, until he was eventually overtaken by that darkness.
*JUDAS AGREED TO BETRAY JESUS ON WEDNESDAY AND HE BETRAYED JESUS ON THURSDAY NIGHT. WHENEVER YOU STEP INTO A SPIRITUAL DARKNESS, THE NATURAL DARKNESS IS NOT FAR BEHIND.
*”In this life there is always the possibility that we might grow cold toward Christ, allow Satan little by little to lead us into compromise with the world, and then in the end betray the Lord and his cause.” (FLSB)
1. Jesus had warned of walking in darkness (John 12:35-36, 46)
Then Jesus told them, “You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. The man who walks in the dark does not know where he is going. Put your trust in the light while you have it, so that you may become sons of light.” (v 35-36)
“I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness. (v 46)
2. Jesus releases Judas for the betrayal (John 13:26-30)--*IT WAS NIGHT*
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 Iscariot, son of Simon. As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him. “What you are about to do, do quickly,” Jesus told him, but no one at the meal understood why Jesus said this to him. Since Judas had charge of the money, some thought Jesus was telling him to buy what was needed for the Feast, or to give something to the poor. As soon as Judas had taken the bread, he went out. AND IT WAS NIGHT. John 13:26-30
*Jesus had held Judas close for over 3 years and had done all that He could do to shine Light into his heart. But, it was obvious that Judas preferred the darkness. So, Jesus released him.
*JESUS HAS NEVER NOR WILL HE EVER FORCE HIMSELF UPON ANYONE. THOSE WHO PREFER THE DARKNESS, HE RELEASES INTO THE DARKNESS.
3. Judas leads the crowd to arrest Jesus carrying lanterns and torches (artificial light)—John 18:1-3
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. John 18:1-3
People had been coming from far and wide to check out the image of Christ. One gentleman in particular was convinced that it was fake. He felt that if he could block the light from shining just right, he would be able to prove that the face of Christ was not there at all. It was his belief that the image was being produced by the right assortment of artificial light. In an attempt to cover the image to block the light, the man realized that there was no artificial light causing this image to appear. Rather, the Light of Life was manifesting Himself to a world in darkness.