Not a name most would like to call themselves but I am Judas. You may be thinking I am the other Judas, not Iscariot but the one mentioned in John 14:22 but that is not what I am saying. I am Judas, Judas Iscariot. In case you have not been following the “I am _______” series (I am Mary, Thomas, Samuel Peter and Adam) I want to assure you that I have not suffered some sort of mental illness that causes me to think I am anyone and possibly everyone other than Dave. I am Dave Peever but for this post I must state that I am Judas.
I have been called by Jesus.
I entered Bible college all excited; I was going to be a pastor. I was called and nothing could stop me. I may not have been the best student or the best example of a Christ follower but that didn’t matter, I was one of them. Life had meaning and goals, all I had to do was finish out my 3 years of training and I would be able to fulfill my calling. No longer would I be a student among students but rather I would be able to make a name for myself. I was Judas.
Money and position were important.
Summer break came and it was time to work, time to make money. It felt good to have cash in my pocket and a place to contribute. I was needed at work and I was rewarded at work. Position and profit soon called louder than commitment and Christ following. It didn’t matter who called me or what they called me to do, I had new meaning in life and new goals. I was Judas.
I didn’t leave the group, just backed off.
I didn’t return to Bible college, instead I pursued a career that had nothing to do with my calling. I’m not sure what others thought. I figure many saw me at church and assumed that my commitment to Jesus had not changed just my choice of how to live it out. I lived one way when Christians were looking so as to gain their approval while living totally different when they were not around so I could feed my lust for money and worldly position. I was Judas.
The only one I was truly fooling was me.
Maybe others thought I was still a follower of Christ but I would have to say that as time went on people stopped seeing me that way. They may not have written me off but it was becoming apparent that I was not the man I tried to trick people into thinking I was. The truth is I am not sure anyone was falling for my act although they all treated me the same as before. I had sold my relationship with Jesus for money and the approval of others and somehow I fooled myself into thinking He didn’t know. I was Judas.
Then one of the Twelve—the one called Judas Iscariot—went to the chief priests and asked, “What are you willing to give me if I deliver him over to you?” So they counted out for him thirty pieces of silver. From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over. Matthew 26:14-16 (NIV)
As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him. So Jesus told him, “What you are about to do, do quickly.” John 13:27 (NIV)
I may not have handed Jesus over to be killed but it isn’t beyond me to kill Him off in my everyday actions so that I can gain wealth and the approval of those who do not follow Him. I am Judas.