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Potter's Field

Aceldama was the Aramaic name given to the field that was purchased with the bribe money that had been given to Judas Iscariot for betraying Jesus Christ. Previously known as "the potter's field" when it was used as a burial place for indigent transients, Aceldama means "field of blood" - a name that is based on that Judas' plot there was purchased with the "blood money" that he received for betraying the Messiah (and also, perhaps, at least partly because of the gory condition of Judas' body when it was buried there, i.e. Acts 1:18). Aceldama is located on a narrow terrace on the south face of the Valley Of Hinnom (the Hinnom Valley is shown in the photograph); perhaps as no coincidence, Judas' dead body (see What Happens When You Die?) went to "hell" on the day that he died (see Where Is Hell?).

Judas' Blood Money

After Jesus Christ was arrested The Fateful Night, Judas attempted to return the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders who had given it to him for his betrayal of the Messiah, but they refused to accept it:

Valley Of Hinnom

"When the morning was come, all the chief priests and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus to put Him to death: And when they had bound Him, they led Him away, and delivered Him to Pontius Pilate the governor."

"Then Judas, which had betrayed Him, when he saw that He was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood."

"And they said, What is that to us? See thou to that."

"And he cast down the pieces of silver in the Temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself."

"And the chief priests took the silver pieces, and said, It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood. And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in. Wherefore that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day. Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value; And gave them for the potter's field, as the Lord appointed me." (Matthew 27:1-10 KJV)

As Matthew 27:9-10 plainly states, Judas' betrayal of the Christ was prophesied centuries before by the prophet Jeremiah (or "Jeremy"). It was also written by King David in the Psalms:

"And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty, Men and brethren, this Scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which The Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus. For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry."

"Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out. And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood. For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishopric let another take." (Acts 1:15-22 KJV)

Fact Finder: Who was chosen to replace Judas as an apostle? Why was someone needed to fill that empty space?
See Matthias


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