This is not what I signed up for! Sure, I liked what he had to say in the beginning. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have joined the rest in this startup company. The leader’s revolutionary ideas smacked of a new world order, but I’m a man who wants to see results. Everybody knows you have to follow through. Put your money where your mouth is, as the saying goes. If I’d been invited to the private meetings he had with those three stinking fishermen, I would have come up with a surefire scheme.
He does know how to draw a crowd, I’ll give him that. But it’s been three years. Where are the changes?
Those other guys seem to think he is the be-all and end-all. Sometimes they act like they want to fall down and worship him. Not me. I’m smart enough to know he’s a teacher–a mentor–nothing more. I’m not putting him on a pedestal.
It’s time for me to move on. My days are numbered, anyway. I figured that out on Monday at Martha’s house when her silly sister wasted the ointment on the teacher’s feet. I still want to vomit when I think it was equivalent to a working man’s salary for an entire year.
How I wish I hadn’t had that knee-jerk reaction and blurted out the money would have been better spent on the poor! Matthew looked at me as if he wasn’t fooled. Does he suspect I’ve been pilfering from our cash box? He’s too good with numbers not to have put two and two together. So what’s wrong if I do dip into the kitty now and then? I’m just as poor as the next beggar. It’s all relative, isn’t it? Furthermore, I was made the treasurer. Doesn’t that give me the right of full discretion? But if Matthew says something . . . oh, I don’t want to deal with it.
I’m going to have a real life. Go where I can be appreciated. But I’m not leaving without getting traveling coins. That’ll be easy. I know where to find the pompous stuffed shirts who will be more than happy to give them to me. It won’t cost me anything except a little time. Then I’m out of here!
Thus was spawned the pact that history never buried.
Judas didn’t mean for his decision to take the turn it did. He thought the conspirators just wanted to rough up the teacher. Send him and his followers a message. Make their point and move forward.
He learned the truth twelve hours after ID’ing Jesus in the garden’s hideaway spot. Those double-crossers want him dead!
Hearing the death sentence, Judas’ head reeled. His simple plan for moving on had spun out of control. Ah! With a sudden stab to his heart, he realized he was carrying blood money. Jesus had never done him any harm. Yes, he had been disappointed in the man, but Jesus didn’t deserve death. This was more than he could endure. Then from his roiling emotional cauldron there bubbled up a way to clear his conscience: Return the tainted coins.
His heart racing faster than his legs, Judas found the cohorts in conclave. Between gasps for breath, he confessed, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood” (Matthew 27:4 ESV).
What was that to them? Smirking, they told him it was his problem, not theirs. They got what they wanted. And no, they would not take back the coins. It meant blood money to them too, and the laws of their religion would not let them keep it. Judas, frustrated beyond comprehension, flung the thirty pieces of silver on the floor and ran out of the Temple. Unable, however, to throw away the guilt of his crime, Judas hanged himself.
“Thirty pieces of silver”
Burns on the traitor’s brain;
“Thirty pieces of silver!
Oh! it is hellish gain!”