The Mission of Judas

March 17, 2010

The Mission of Judas

Early one evening, while the other disciples were busy preparing for the upcoming feast of unleavened bread, Judas fell into a deep and troubled sleep. While he lay motionless on the hard ground, he received a terrifying vision.

In this vision, Judas found himself around a table with the other disciples, sharing an intimate Passover meal with Jesus. At this meal, Jesus spoke solemnly about broken flesh and sacrificial blood while breaking bread and pouring wine. Judas was then transported to the local Jewish temple, where he promised to identify Jesus with a kiss so that the religious authorities could arrest him.

In the blink of an eye, he found himself in the Garden of Gethsemane, embracing Jesus and tenderly kising him on the cheek. This was followed swiftly by the arrest, trial, torture, and death of his Lord.

Yet the dream did not end there; instead Judas went on to experience his own sorrow and remorse at this act of betrayal and see firsthand his own harrowing suicide. As if this were not enough, he then found himself in a courtroom with disciples through the ages condemning his actions and pouring out insults.

Yet in this vision he went on to witness the resurrection and ascension of his Beloved. He say the spread of Jesus’ message across the entire world, with its victory over the forces of Rome and the way in which it would transform the lives of countless millions. When Judas awoke in a cold sweat from this nightmare, he recalled a teaching that had recently been given by Jesus. Only yesterday Jesus had addressed his disciples, saying, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains on a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates hi life in this world will keep it for eternal life.”

As Judas reflected again on these words and on the vision he had just experienced, he felt a profound sadness well up within his heart, for he finally knew why he had been called. He knew what needed to be done. He understood now what his destiny was.


I’m going to keep my comments short here, because I feel sick and want to go back to sleep.

This parable takes the idea of fidelity in betrayal to the very extreme, and I’d suggest there’s something we could learn from this. For all the abuse he receives, were it not for the actions of Judas Easter wouldn’t even be a thing. Sure, you could argue that sooner or later Jesus would have gotten in over his head and the authorities would have got him, but the story is as it is. Keeping that in mind, Christians everywhere owe a great debt to Judas, then, because if he had not done what he did then it is arguable that Christianity does not exist.

This is the paradox of the betrayal: in order for something good to come to fruition, it needed to be betrayed in the most horrible way first.


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