Every day Jesus went to the Temple to teach, and each evening He returned to spend the night on the Mount of Olives. The crowds gathered at the Temple early each morning to hear Him.
The Festival of Unleavened Bread, which is also called Passover, was approaching. The leading priests and teachers of religious law were plotting how to kill Jesus, but they were afraid of the people’s reaction.()Luke 21:37 – 22:2
Don’t miss the importance of this moment. The Lamb of God has arrived in Jerusalem at Passover time. All of the opposition in gathering force and momentum. The Festival of Unleavened Bread was approaching. Matthew 26:2 and Mark 14:1 tell us that the Feast was only two days away. That moment when the Passover lamb would be sacrificed, is perfectly timed for the Son of Man to come and offer Himself as a ransom for many.
Luke tells us two out of three sub-sections of the Sanhedrin had made up their minds to kill Him. The Elders were not listed as among the co-conspirators by Luke, but Matthew 26:3 tells us the Elders were involved too. The members of the Sanhedrin had already intended to kill Him. The problem was HOW. The people hung on every word Jesus uttered. They flocked around Him from early in the morning to late at night. There just didn’t seem to be an opportunity to do it. They would have to do it legally for there to be a chance to make it work. If they were to arrest Him openly, in front of all the pilgrims who had flocked into Jerusalem for Passover and already considered Him to be Messiah, they would run the risk of a riot. So they plotted to find a way to do it that would not stir the reaction of the crowds. There were many rabble rousers, as the authorities would have viewed them, who had come down from the North. As we know, many of these had followed Jesus down from Galilee.
As the Festival of Unleavened Bread drew near, the “leaven” present in the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem and the “leaven” present among the disciples comes to the fore. Satan entered into Judas and he goes to the leading priests and captains of the Temple guard to discuss the best way to betray Jesus. Seemingly, Judas willingly becomes a pawn in the hands of the leaders to betray his Master. What would possess him to do that? Was it, as some suspect, that he became demon possessed and satan took him over? Or was there a more gradual process? If it was a sudden demon possession, what precipitated the event?
Take some time to consider for yourself why Judas would do such a thing?
What do you think his motivation was?
Remember that John tells us that the disciples themselves didn’t immediately suspect Judas. It was not like it was obvious. We blame him now because we have known for so long that he is the one who betrayed Jesus. But it was not clear to them. It could have been any one of them.
Now Jesus was deeply troubled, and He exclaimed,”I tell you the truth, one of you will betray Me!” The disciples looked at each other, wondering whom He could mean. The disciple Jesus loved was sitting next to Jesus at the table. Simon Peter motioned to him to ask, “Who’s He talking about?” So that disciple leaned over to Jesus and asked, “Lord, who is it?”John 13:21– 25
Almost all our faults are more pardonable than the methods we think up to hide them.F. LaRochefoucauld
Smooth words may hide a wicked heart, just as a pretty glaze covers a clay pot.Proverbs 26:23
Nothing and no one is perfect. It just takes a good eye to find those hidden imperfections.Daphne Delacroix
God will force you to deal with a condition that’s hidden beneath your armour.Daphne Delacroix
Love takes off masks that we cannot live without and know we cannot live within.James Baldwin