October 12

John 5:16-47; Mark 6:6b-11; Matthew 9:35-10:42; Luke 9:1-5

Judas was a believer, a follower of Christ. He was one of the twelve who was given power to heal the sick, drive out demons, and raise the dead. He, along with Peter, James and John, went into cities and shared the good news of Jesus.

I wonder what that trip was like for Judas. Is this where his heart began to change from wanting to follow Christ to wanting something else?

God is asking me today what it is that I want? Matthew 5:34-39 says following Jesus is serious business. His is not an easy road to travel. It certainly is not always peaceful.

And Jesus is very demanding. On one hand the Bible tells husbands to love their wives. But in 5:37 Jesus warns that if you love her more than you love God you aren’t worthy of him. If I put anything or anyone above my love for Jesus I am not worthy of him.

What does that even mean?

Jesus demands that he be our life’s focus. That all the things we do, the jobs we have, the people we love, are to come second to our relationship with The Lord. None of these things are wrong and we are to be busy doing what God intends for us to do, loving each other, serving each other.

But somewhere along the way Judas lost his focus. And we know how that story ends.

May we keep our eyes on Jesus. May we love him more today than we did yesterday. And may we serve him with joy.

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4 thoughts on “October 12

  1. vonhonnauldt

    Judas was a follower of Jesus, but for all the wrong reasons. He thought Jesus would conquer the hated Romans and gain Israel’s freedom. When it became obvious that Jesus was not going to do that, then Judas turned against Him, and finally betrayed Him. Judas was never a believer in the true sense of the word, but like many today only followed Jesus for what he thought he could get out of Him.

    Reply
    1. cazehner Post author

      Thank you for your insightful remarks, my friend. Scripture certainly does tell us Judas betrayed Jesus and I, too believe it was because he thought Jesus was here to conquer Rome. However, I cannot know his heart in the passages we read today. All I know for sure is that Scripture tells us he followed Jesus, he was one of the twelve who performed miracles and preached the good news. Whether or not he went in with the wrong motives or not is not clear at this point. He probably wasn’t the only disciple who was thinking Jesus was going to free Israel from Roman occupation. We just don’t know for sure because Scripture doesn’t share that detail. I liked what you said about so many of us today still trying to follow Jesus for what we can get out of Him. That is undoubtedly a lesson we can learn from the life of Judas as we read on in the New Testament. May God bless you and I hope you’ll continue to share your insight into the Word.

      Reply
      1. vonhonnauldt

        You’re right. Even after the Resurrection, the disciples were still expecting Jesus to set up His kingdom, Acts 1:6. They had a hard time accepting that God had other plans for them to follow.

        As for Judas, it’s true that we can’t know his heart, however, his actions do give some indication of it. For example, Scripture tells us he was a thief and helped himself to the treasury, John 12:4-6. Further, at the Last Supper, when Jesus washed His disciples’ feet, answering Peter’s outburst about washing his hands and his head, said, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet. And you [plural-perhaps looking at the other disciples as well] are all clean, but not every one of you,” John 13:10 (ESV). This indicates to me that Judas wasn’t a true believer.

        The ability to cast out demons or do other marvelous works, or even preaching in the name of the Lord, doesn’t automatically mean one is a true follower of the Lord, cf. Matthew 7:21-23.

        I do appreciate your desire to go only where the Scripture leads us. Would there were more of you!.

      2. cazehner Post author

        Once again, I appreciate your insight into Scripture. I certainly am not defending Judas’ actions as recorded in the chapters we will read in a few days. The man is going to betray my Lord! But if I look at Scripture as it unfolds, I still am cautious to judge his heart at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. I know there are denominational differences on this subject and I don’t mean to offend or even defend any particular position. I’m only sharing what God lays on my heart each day as I open his Word and pray. I know I have a lot to learn. God bless you as you continue to search the Scriptures and share with others the truth God has for us there.

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