Judas Iscariot - Page 6


By the time Judas reached Gethsemane at the head of the armed mob, he was completely abandoned.  His mind had even conceived the plan of indicating Our Lord to the mob by giving him a kiss, thus turning what is the pre-eminent sign of affection into an instrument of the Devil.  Indeed, it was not even necessary, for Our Lord walked forward and made himself known.

But now every spark of goodness had for the moment been extinguished in the darkness which filled his soul, and he approached Our Lord to kiss him.  Even then Jesus still tried to recall the Apostle to what he was doing, “Judas, is it with a kiss that you are betraying the Son of Man?” (NRSV, Luke 22:47,48).  But the words of Jesus had no effect and Judas came up to him and said, “Hail, Master!” and kissed him.  Once more Jesus tried to help Judas understand what he was doing: “Friend,” he asked, “why are you here?” (Catholic edition RSV, Matthew 26:49,50).  For regardless of his own plight, Jesus was concerned only to make Judas realise the monstrous thing he was about.

But Judas realised that only when it was all over.  After the Crucifixion he made his way to the Temple, and flung the 30 pieces of silver through the doorway of the Holy Place, where only the priests were permitted to go.  Then, having thus rid himself of the mocking reward, he went and hanged himself.

“He was bad enough to do the deed of infamy, and good enough to be unable to bear the burden of its guilt”. (1)

“He acted like Satan, but like a Satan who had it in him to be an Apostle”. (2)