Judas has been wandering around all over the place recently. There was a video showed in church yesterday where Judas made a big appearance. I read another blog about him. He turned up in my bible readings.
Judas was as committed to Jesus as any of the other disciples. He gave up his life and followed Jesus around, saw all the miracles, heard all the things Jesus said. He knew the scriptures and he very probably believed that Jesus was the messiah. He’d witnessed Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem and he’d seen that all the people were on Jesus’ side. The timing was right, the people were ready, all Jesus had to do was rise up and remove the Roman occupying forces and restore Jerusalem to an independent state… but it didn’t happen. Jesus didn’t do anything.
So Judas pushed him, just a little, to get him to take action.
Except it didn’t work out. Jesus didn’t rise up his army. Jesus died. And Judas didn’t let himself see the end of the story.
It kind of reminds me of the story of Abraham.
God called Abraham and Abraham believed enough to leave his home and start a nomadic life. Abraham had faith, he believed the promises he was given and yet, when God promised him a son, Abraham took matters into his own hands, he pushed God, just a little bit, just to get the ball rolling. But Ishmael was not the child God promised and instead of Abraham creating the right situation for God to work in, he created a more difficult situation for himself.
Sometimes it is easy to read the bible and to believe God’s promises and to have faith and yet to also push God just a little bit, just to get to those situations you (rightly or wrongly) believe have been promised to you.
It doesn’t work out well, for Judas or for Abraham. But how do we respond to those dark times, when we’ve pushed and instead of making things work out everything has gone even worse? How do we react when it looks like everything we’ve worked for, everything we’ve believed in, has been destroyed because we were too impatient?
Judas didn’t get to witness how awesome his messiah was. He didn’t get to witness the fact that Jesus wasn’t around to destroy the Romans, he was there to destroy an entire way of life, an entire way of living, and entire way of facing death.
Abraham stood firm, he knew he’d make a mistake (lets be honest, it wasn’t his first), but he trusted that his God was bigger than the situation he had put himself in. He continued to walk by faith. And he saw the promised outcome.
How do you respond to mistakes?