Friday 26 September, 2014

Matthew 27:1-10

27 It was early in the morning. All the chief priests and the elders of the people decided to put Jesus to death. 2 They tied him up and led him away. Then they handed him over to Pilate, who was the governor. 3 Judas, who had handed him over, saw that Jesus had been sentenced to die. He felt deep shame and sadness for what he had done. So he returned the 30 silver coins to the chief priests and the elders. 4 “I have sinned,” he said. “I handed over a man who is not guilty.” “What do we care?” they replied. “That’s your problem.” 5 So Judas threw the money into the temple and left. Then he went away and hanged himself. 6 The chief priests picked up the coins. They said, “It’s against the law to put this money into the temple fund. It is blood money. It has paid for a man’s death.” 7 So they decided to use the money to buy a potter’s field. People from other countries would be buried there. 8 That is why it has been called The Field of Blood to this very day. 9 Then the words spoken by Jeremiah the prophet came true. He had said, “They took the 30 silver coins. That price was set for him by the people of Israel. 10 They used the coins to buy a potter’s field, just as the Lord commanded me.” (Zechariah 11:12,13; Jeremiah 19:1–13; 32:6–9)

This is tragic.

I have no idea what Judas had expected would happen when he betrayed Jesus or why he took the money. But now he sees Jesus condemned he wants to undo it. But it can’t be undone. Jesus dies because of Judas’ sin.

But he died just as much because of my sin. My sin can’t be undone either. So Jesus took spiritual consequences of my sin (death) from me onto himself. But Judas does things the other way around: he embraces the death he brought on Jesus.

(There can be physical consequences too which damage me or, worse, damage others. The world and I both need His healing too.)

I find the response of the priests equally tragic: so concerned about the wrongness of taking the blood money back into the temple treasury, yet oblivious to the wrongness of buying the death of an innocent man (let alone the unfathomable wrongness of putting the Son of God to death).

Yet out of all this wrongness God brings the most wonderful act of rightness.

This is wonderful!

Written by David Cornell

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