14 Then one of the twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests 15 and said, “What will you give me if I betray him to you?” They paid him thirty pieces of silver. 16 And from that moment he began to look for an opportunity to betray him.

Holy Wednesday is the day when, if we know nothing else, we know that it was the day wherein Judas decided to betray Jesus, the man he had lived, dined, and learned from for 2-3 years, we believe. Was it because Judas did not realize that Jesus was the Messiah? Did he still think Jesus had to be like an earthly king and thereby was not living up to that, especially after Palm Sunday, so he now saw him as a con-man? Was it simply because money ruled Judas and his life, way more than love of God or Jesus? Some think that Judas actually knew that this betrayal was needed, in the scheme of things God had planned, so that the crucifixion and the resurrection could occur.

What I think is better for us to think of is what can cause someone, like ourselves as followers, to change their course and betray what we believe in. Today, as we are in Holy Week, think of this, read each of the Gospels for around this time period, hear the writer’s viewpoints, but then try to think of those we lose from the church after they go to college, after they experience something unpleasant in the church, or perhaps about those that lose faith because they are taken more to the side by wolves in sheep’s clothing than by the truly faithful to God and fluid readings of the scriptures as time goes by. Could you be Judas? What will you do to make sure you do not become Judas? How do we help our next generations to see the value of good theology, faithful followers as mentors, and the value of God in their lives?
Spend some time thinking, praying and “being Judas”, so to not become Judas. May we understand and not dismiss what could happen to many of us. Amen.