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Jesus and Judas

“Jesus clearly knew that Judas felt no kindness or wise consideration for his master. He also knew that Judas was full of devilishly bitter poison, and even while [his feet were being washed by Jesus] he was devising the means to betray him. Nevertheless, Jesus honored him just as much as the rest of the disciples and washed his feet as well, continually exhibiting His own unique love…That Jesus put a thief [Judas Iscariot] in charge of the money shows that by every means He attempted to save Judas: He fulfilled Judas' lust for money; He allowed Judas to exercise apostolic authority…He washed Judas' feet with the other disciples…and He allowed him to partake at the table of the Mystical Supper…Yet Judas could never overcome his greed.” (St. Cyril of Alexandria, Orthodox Study Bible, John 12:3-8)

“The Lord meets us in a group, but again as an individual… Judas is treated with deference…He read the thoughts of Judas. He understood that His apostle had made a conscious decision to betray the Lord and was about to expose His location to the high priests and temple authorities. “Satan entered him” [Luke 22:3]. Judas surrendered his will to the devil. The fatal decision happened. There was to be no turning back… Jesus has the last word of pity for the man—“What you are doing, do quickly.” Get it over with. You have sold yourself to the enemy. Spare yourself added agony.”  (Fr. Vladimir Berzonsky)

“Christians will not be asked how they began but, rather, how they finished. St. Paul began badly, but finished well. Judas’s beginning was praiseworthy, but his end was despicable….The thief was on the cross and he was justified by a single word; and Judas who was counted in the number of the apostles lost all his labor in one single night and descended from heaven to hell. Therefore, let no-one boast of his good works, for all those who trust in themselves fall.” (St. Jerome of Stridon, Abba Xanthias)

“The entire Bible, from front to back, shows time and time again, God giving people every conceivable opportunity to repent, to turn to Him with contrite hearts, to open themselves up to change and His love. Sadly, we also read in the Scriptures, many continued to despise faith, were given over to self-will, and did not avail themselves of His deep love and mercy, shown most clearly in Christ…Jesus wants us all to receive Him. At the last supper account in the Bible, He offers His body and blood to everyone at the table, including Judas Iscariot who had already made up his mind to betray Jesus. Judas was about to commit one of the worst sins ever, betraying Christ, and still, even knowing what was in his mind and heart, Jesus was reaching out to him.” (Sacramental Living Ministries, Joseph Girzone)

“God is ever ready to forgive us when we confess our sins and truly repent. Among the Lord Jesus’ disciples, the repentance of Saint Peter confirms the ever-present possibility of forgiveness and restoration. By contrast, the dark, tragic example of Judas reminds us of what happens if we fail to seek forgiveness and change our values, but turn instead to self-destruction (Mt 27:3-5)…If we abandon our own desires and opinions, and endeavor to fulfill God’s wishes and understanding, we will save ourselves, no matter what our position, no matter what our circumstance. But, if we cling to our own desires and opinions, neither position nor circumstance will be of help. Even in Paradise, Eve transgressed God’s commandment, and life with the Savior Himself brought the unfortunate Judas no good.” (OCPM 3/2/2016, St. Ambrose of Optina)


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