Now the betrayer had arranged a signal with them: “The one I kiss is the man; arrest him.” Going at once to Jesus, Judas said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” and kissed him.
Jesus replied, “Do what you came for, friend.”
Then the men stepped forward, seized Jesus and arrested him. Matthew 26:48-50
Have you ever been connected with someone who flattered you with kisses (or something similar) only to have them turn on you later?
If you have ever experienced it you know it is quite unpleasant. When I have been in this type of situation I wonder where was my discernment? Why was I vulnerable to fall for something like that?
Who does that to people?
But knowing that this happened to Jesus helps. Betrayal happens.
What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. Ecclesiastes 1:9
Of course, our betrayal experiences do not compare with those of Jesus but it is good to know that pain we feel – He can relate. And God can use it for a greater good.
The sooner you can forgive a betrayer the better off you will be. But just don’t expect that to be something you can do without Jesus. He is the one who makes forgiveness possible.
On the Road,
Today’s PrayerPoint ~ God’s Classroom
Have you ever felt unnecessarily squeezed into a painful circumstance only to realize later that God used that time to deepen and shape your character in profound ways?
A friend recently reminded me about a very difficult time in her life she looks back on and knows she was in God’s Classroom. Sure, there were things she needed to work on–she won’t deny that. But she found herself in the midst of a Frank Peretti type novel in the small town God placed her in. Significant spiritual warfare. Generational ugliness. Betrayed families. And yet, some of the most depth to relationships she has ever felt occurred there. It seemed that the whole community was undergoing significant shifts regarding what was True and Right and Godly. It’s amazing how God can teach His Truths to all but the lessons are so individualized, while being inexplicably connected to one another.
Ever been a pupil in God’s Classroom? Sometimes it is just a word or verse that seems to be popping up everywhere. Sometimes it happens as a consequence when your incredible selfishness and arrogance makes a grand debut into the lives of others. Other times, through no fault of yours, you find yourself in the wrong place at the wrong time and in the middle of a spiritual mess.
Step back and take a look at who is ‘in class’ with you. Sometimes you have already learned what they are learning now. Maybe they have walked a path you will soon be walking. There is no coincidence that the people around you are in your life. Some you need to learn from. Others you need to model to.
What is God teaching you today? There is always something to learn!
Show me your ways, O Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long. Psalm 25:4-5
There are a couple of lines in this song that keep running through my mind:
Why by Michael Card
Why did it have to be a friend who chose to betray the Lord?
and why did he use a kiss to show them, that’s not what a kiss is for?
Only a friend can betray a friend, a stranger has nothing to gain.
And only a friend comes close enough to ever cause so much pain.
Why did it have to be a thorny crown place upon his head?
It should have been a royal one, made of jewels and gold instead.
It had to be a crown of thorns, because in this world that we live,
all that would seek to love a thorn is all the world has to give.
Why did it have to be a heavy cross he was made to bear?
and why did they nail His feet and hands; His love would have held him there.
It was a cross for on a cross, a thief was supposed to pay.
and Jesus had come into the world to steal every heart away.
Yes, Jesus had come into the world to steal every heart away.
Betrayal is one of those experiences we have all gone through at one point or another in our lives. Sometimes it is a secret shared, a boundary violated, a promise broken, an intentional wound. Have you forgiven your betrayer?
Have you considered your actions that have betrayed your true feelings and beliefs? Those times you knew what was the right course of action and chose the other path? If we nurse the wounds and the pain we have experienced in a betrayal, we continue to allow ourselves to be victimized. Christ came for our victory over victimization by demonstrating God’s forgiveness in His action on the Cross. Allow His forgiveness of your betrayal of Him lead the way and surrender any perceived justification your have against your betrayers.
God’s blessings to you as you release the burden of betrayal into His arms of redemption and restoration!