The Kiss of Life or Death
His betrayer had given them a sign: “The One I kiss, He’s the One; arrest Him!” So he went right up to Jesus and said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” – and kissed Him.
Judas betrayed Jesus with a sign of affection. What should have been a sign of love and deep admiration was a signal to arrest Him and an act of betrayal – perhaps the most hurtful of all sins. Was Judas really trying to hurt Jesus or force His hand to act?
Like the other disciples, Judas had just spent three years learning at the feet of Jesus. He had witnessed many miracles and knew of His power. Why would he betray Jesus? John 12 tells the story of Mary of Bethany and how she anointed Jesus with expensive oil. She, too, kissed Jesus – on His feet as she washed them. Hers was a sign of true devotion and submission to His will. Judas did not like the fact that the expensive oil was used for this purpose. He knew how much it was worth and sought to take the oil from her and sell it. Jesus rebuked him. Judas did not get what he wanted, and the next time he is mentioned in Scripture, he is plotting with the chief priests and elders to arrest Jesus.
Perhaps, Judas was getting revenge on Jesus for rebuking him and not selling the oil. He may also have been trying to force Jesus’s hand to act and take authority from the Romans, as the disciples hoped He would do. Either way, Judas took matters into his own hands, and the result was deadly. Most scholars believe Judas hung himself within three days of the arrest. He finally realized who Jesus really was and could not live with the sin he had committed. He could not face Jesus again.
If things just aren’t going your way, understand that you cannot take revenge on Jesus or force His hand to act. Like Mary of Bethany, your only recourse is to submit fully to His authority. As her kiss was genuine and life-giving, so your submission to His will is your life-giving alternative. Jesus cannot be manipulated or controlled. He is either Lord of your life or your judge. Rebellion only brings death. Choose life by submitting to His plan for you. He can turn all your disappointments into joy, but you must die to your own will first so His perfect plan can emerge.
Have a blessed day!