Judas Iscariot: Part One
Did Judas commit adultery? Fornication? Pornography? Masturbation? Have any sexual sin? Was he a Glutton? A Gossip? A Liar?
During the 3.5 years of doing ministry with Jesus and the other apostles, he was not suspected of any crime against God, or his brothers. Except the sin that were exposed the week before his death by suicide.
Judas was never accused of doing anything abnormally wrong by his peers. At least we have no record of it, until the very end.
The only Testimony we have against Judas is three fold.
- He took money from the ministry and spent it on himself. (Which may not have been public information until after his death, this unclear.)
— How many pastors of churches, leaders of ministries, and denominations today: fudge on ministry finances?
- He boldly proclaimed to be caring about the poor, but later we learn that he cared more about the money (which later was known to be hypocrisy.)
— How many pastors of churches, leaders of ministries, and denominations today: proclaim to serve the poor and needy for ulterior motives?
- He betrayed Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. (And yet even Judas felt contrition and condemnation and confessed that what he did was wrong.)
— How many pastors of churches, leaders of ministries, and denominations today: serve Jesus for the silver pieces? and end up denying his person?
In other words, the sin of Judas was the worship of Mammon.
More Questions about Judas…
- Did Judas ever preach a false doctrine? (We have no record of that.)
- Was Judas ever discovered or identified as a false teacher? (We have no record of that.)
- Did Judas ever utter a false prophecy? (We have no record of that.)
- Did Judas not preach the Gospel as commanded by Jesus? (We have no record of that.)
- Did Judas not heal the sick as commanded by Jesus? (We have no record of that.)
- Did Judas not go out to the towns to witness to them as commanded by Jesus? (We have no record of that.)
- Did Judas not cast out devils as commanded by Jesus? (We have no record of that.)
- Did Judas not give to the poor as commanded by Jesus? (We have no record of that. He apparently advocated that fairly strongly. That is one of the few things mentioned about Judas, he was an advocate for the poor. Note: You can be a strong advocate for the poor and still not care about the poor.)
- Did Judas openly refuse to follow any of the commands of Jesus? (We have no record of that, except two.)
- Did Judas not leave everything to follow Jesus, as commanded by Jesus? (Apparently, He did.)
- Did Judas refuse to lay down his life for Jesus and his brethren? (Apparently, no. Not until the very end.)
- Did Judas ever demonstrate outward rebellion to the work of Christ? (We have only one record of that.)
- Did Judas ever sin against the Son of God? (We have only one record of that.)
- Was Judas ever condemned for anything besides stealing money from the ministry, and spending it on himself, and betraying Christ for 30 pieces of silver?
Think about that …
By most standards and appearances, Judas was a model believer and follower of Jesus, even much more so than many seminary trained pastors today.
Except for his mostly hidden sin, the love of Mammon, Judas would have been considered a model student of Christ.
Judas was such an exemplary follower of Christ, that the other disciples did not think or consider him to be the obvious one who would betray Jesus. In fact, since Jesus entrusted the money management of the ministry to Judas, it was probably believed that Judas was a highly honored and respected disciple of Jesus, possibly in a higher station that the others.
The Take Away
What can we learn (or “take away” and use in our personal understanding) from the life and testimony of Judas?
One: “He who endures to the end, shall be saved.”
Judas is a poster child example, that He who does not endure to the End, will not be Saved.
We cannot stop running the race we started, and expect to be saved.
This should be a real concern for every believer. It was a real concern for Paul. Can we see the echoes of Judas’ scary testimony, somewhat affecting sober Paul’s testimony?
1 Corinthians 9:24-27 (KJV)
24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. 25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. 26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: 27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.
Two: “No man can serve two masters.”
Matthew 6:24 (KJV)
No man can serve two masters:
for either he will hate the one, and love the other;
or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.
Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Any person trying to mix Jesus with their love for personal gain, or their worship of materialism, will be unsuccessful in the kingdom of God.
James 4:1-4 (KJV)
1 From whence come wars and fightings among you?
Come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members?
2 Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain:
ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.
3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss,
that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God?
Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
Three: “Every man will proclaim his own goodness.”
In other words, the power of self deception is great. It is a pit, a trap, a lie, and a web, that many a man fall into.
Proverbs 20:6 (KJV)
6 Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness:
but a faithful man who can find?
As in Judas’ case many a man will take up a cause like feeding the hungry, but in the process, will become attracted to the money generated by the ministry, and get their heart corrupted. A man will start doing ministry in the Name of God and Christ, but really deep down the minister is ministering for his own benefit, his own glory, making a name for himself, and using that to build his own personal money empire. No one is immune to the love of money, and the love of control that money can bring.
Have you noticed: it seems in this day and hour, most every supposed Christian Website you visit, has a monetary gain connected to it. A beggar’s button (Donation Button), a plea for money connected to the noble service they are providing. Here one should be asking this question: Am I (or they)doing this work, or ministry, or service as unto God? or unto men? Am I obeying Jesus’ command: “Freely you have received–Freely Give.” Do I want to be supported and honored by God, or by Men? Paul had this question ever before his ministry. As mentioned above. Yes, a workman is worthy of his wages, but one must draw a line and not cross it. One must not become an addict for money and fame, if he does he will end up denying the Gospel of God. The real reward of following Jesus will be that we are treated like Jesus. We cannot rejoice in our persecutions, and tribulations if we are focused on the money, the fame and popularity. That will take us far away from the narrow path, the walk of intimacy with Christ.
Every day it would be a good practice, to do a self check, to confirm our motives and ways are pure before Christ:
2 Corinthians 13:5-6 (KJV)
5 Examine yourselves,
whether ye be in the faith;
prove your own selves.
Know ye not your own selves,
how that Jesus Christ is in you,
except ye be reprobates?
6 But I trust that ye shall know that we are not reprobates.
Judas Iscariot: Part Two
Living Things Grow
The Doctrine of Growing: We are called to continually Grow up in our Salvation.
We are called into “on going,” progressive, deliberate, necessary, increasing,
and maturing character in the work of salvation is a given in the Gospel of Christ.
The Day we stop growing is the day we start dying.
1 Peter 2:2-3 (KJV)
2 As newborn babes,
desire the sincere milk of the word,
that ye may grow thereby:
3 If so be ye have tasted
that the Lord is gracious.
After a certain unspecified period of time every baby is expected to mature.
At some point the child is expected get off a milk diet, and start eating some meat.
It is the same with the Gospel.
1 Corinthians 13:11 (KJV)
When I was a child,
I spake as a child,
I understood as a child,
I thought as a child:
but when I became a man,
I put away childish things.
If I am 5, 10, or 20 years old in the Gospel and still drinking only babies milk,
something must be very wrong in my spiritual walk of faith.
1 Corinthians 3:1-3 (KJV)
1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual,
but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.
2 I have fed you with milk, and not with meat:
for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.
3 For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying,
and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?
That is a cutting indictment from Paul. “they are walking as men.” Men are selfish, Jesus is selfless. Men create envy and strife through greed and self promotion, Jesus brings Love and Peace, through giving and serving.
We cannot do that in maturity if we do not grow up in our Salvation.
Many have been lulled to sleep believing in their own beliefs. They hare been told, all they need for Salvation is to believe. Nothing more.
Personally, I believe that is a complete misunderstanding of the Gospel.
I must “just believe” in Christ fully trusting in Him, to begin our walk with him.
But the story doesn’t end there.
If you enter into a marriage, and all your have ever done in the marriage is say: “I do.” And from that day on, you go on a selfish vacation, and never come back. You have done nothing for your bride, nothing to show your love and devotion, nothing to express your deep appreciation and concern, nothing to provide, protect, and nurture the love you have for your wife: What kind of Husband (or wife) would you be?
Christ faithfully gave his ALL for us. What should we be giving back to Him?
Anything short of that will be missing the mark.
That is one reason why we constantly need to be stirring ourselves up to love and good deeds. Because in our flesh we are lazy.
Hebrews 10:23-25 (KJV)
23 Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)
24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:
25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together,
as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another:
and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
The expectation of any living plant, that is alive, is this: That it will grow.
Mark 4:26-29 (KJV)
26 And he said, So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground; 27 And should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should:
- spring and
- grow up, he knoweth not how.
For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself;
- first the blade,
- then the ear,
- after that the full corn in the ear.
But when the fruit is brought forth, immediately
- he putteth in the sickle,
- because the harvest is come.
The expectation of any living human being is that they would continue to mature:
Ephesians 4:13-16 (KJV) 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: 14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, [how many things? All Things] which is the head, even Christ: 16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love. God sets the bar of His Expectation Quite High.
- Grow up
These are just a few of the words used to describe our calling to grow up and mature our faith in Christ.
How much growth is expected of those who have come into the Unity of the Faith?
Quite a lot actually.
It is expected that we should:
- Come into the Unity of the Faith
- [By growing in] the Knowledge of the Son of God, [How far must we grow?]
- Unto a Perfect Man
- Unto the Measure of Christ
- Unto the Full Stature of Christ.
So what is the False picture of Salvation fed to modern christians who know not the word of God, and are eager to lower the High Standards of God, and are taught by false teachers, who likewise want to lower the standard of God’s Word, and even confess that they don’t believe in the Complete Word of God, but rather cherry pick and choose certain verses and certain parts that agree with their false theology and false teaching, and openly reject or simply just ignore those Bible Passages that openly and persuasively refute their cherry picked doctrines and false teachings that lower the bar of expectation and totally stunt the growth of their congregations, and require little if any genuine faith and believing to look good on the outside, but inwardly remain unchanged.
What will a false Teacher do?
Immediately, he will lower the bar of expectation.
He will through in the point: “We are all sinners.”
We all sin. [That is the false teachers first go to point. Not the righteousness in Christ Jesus.]
Don’t feel bad, God knows you are going to sin.
You can’t help but sin.
But God still loves you.
In fact, His love for you is “Unconditional” [literally without conditions].
Did you say, the sinner’s prayer?
Were you sincere, when you said that prayer?
Then you must be born again?
You have nothing to Worry About?
Your salvation is secure. OSAS
Once Saved Always Saved.
You don’t have to do anything to be saved.
In fact, all your works are like dirty filthy rags.
Therefore you should avoid doing good works to earn your salvation.
You are saved by grace through faith not of works, which are not of yourselves, lest any man should boast.
So don’t worry about your salvation, worrying is a sin.
- Just come to church,
- pay your tithes,
- say the sinner’s prayer,
- Get baptized.
- Take communion,
- rededicate you life from time to time, [after you have backslidden]
- that’s all you need to be saved and go to heaven.
Ephesians 2:8-10 (KJV) 8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
Compare Judas to the Average Pastor in the Modern Day Christian Church Pulpit …
How many pastors, elders, leaders, deacons, missionaries, evangelists, etc., who are proclaiming God’s Word, have spent money from the ministry on themselves, and have not repented? When confronted instead of repenting they double down? How many are in their position of authority to benefit themselves? Who want that position to make a name for themselves? How many are interested in self-promotion come in
And instead of acting in humility, confessing their sin, showing genuine remorse, they justify themselves, or even outright deny any wrong doing?
Instead of being open and honest, they rather attack the person exposing their duplicity, and dishonesty, and do everything possible to cover their spirit of covetousness, greed, gluttony, selfishness, nepotism, sin, compromise, or corruption, trying their best to cover up their stealing from the ministry of Jesus.