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Friday, March 30 2012

The Traitor In History And Prophecy

The English word "traitor" originated from a Latin word, traditor, which meant to deliver up, or to surrender possession of. Surprisingly, the words trade and trader, which do not have the highly-negative meaning of traitor, originated from the same Latin word; a common origin, but different meaning (although, for example, a man who sells an animal may view himself as trader, while the animal may view him as a traitor for selling the animal away from their home, where they may have been born and lived all of their life up to that time - the look in the eyes often speaks much more loudly than any cry or whimper).

As we will see however, Judas Iscariot defined both meanings of that Latin word - he was a traitor, through betrayal, and he was a trader, from the thirty pieces of silver that he sold himself for.

Since the Passover when the Messiah was betrayed, the name of Judas Iscariot has become synonymous with traitor. It's important to include "Iscariot," so as not to confuse the traitor with numerous other righteous men of Bible History who were named Judas, including an actual sibling of Jesus Christ ("13:55 Is not this the carpenter's son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas?" Matthew 13:55 KJV) and another who was one of the twelve apostles (see Righteous Judas). Most people who look back at that time see that Judas in that way. But what did people who looked forward to Judas Iscariot, in Prophecy, think of him?

A little history lesson of prophecy, by the apostle Peter shortly after the death of Judas (The Messiah and Judas died on the same day - Judas early in the morning of Nisan 14, just after sunrise, the Messiah in late afternoon of Nisan 14, nearing sunset and the beginning of the first day of Passover/Unleavened Bread - see The Unleavened Days Of Passover and Why Observe The True Sabbath?), speaking of how King David wrote of Judas, in the Psalms (e.g. Psalm 69:25 and 109:8, as quoted by Peter below), centuries before Judas was born:

The High Priest's House

"1:15 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, 1:16 Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas [see also The Prophets: David and A History Of Jerusalem: The City Of David], which was guide to them that took Jesus. 1:17 For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.

1:18 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. 1:19 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.

1:20 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.

1:21 Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, 1:22 Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.

1:23 And they appointed two, Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias. 1:24 And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, show whether of these two thou hast chosen, 1:25 That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place. 1:26 And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles." (Acts 1:15-26 KJV)

Peter could have quoted other prophets about Judas as well, including Zechariah (see The Prophets: Zechariah) and Jeremiah (as we will read farther below).

"11:12 And I said unto them, If ye think good, give me my price; and if not, forbear. So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver. 11:13 And the LORD said unto me, Cast it unto the potter: a goodly price that I was prised at of them. And I took the thirty pieces of silver, and cast them to the potter in the house of the LORD." (Zechariah 11:12-13 KJV)

The Son of God also knew all along that Judas Iscariot would be the Judas "that should betray him."

"6:64 But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him." (John 6:64 KJV)

"6:70 Jesus answered them, Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil? [see the Fact Finder question below] 6:71 He spake of Judas Iscariot the son of Simon: for he it was that should betray him, being one of the twelve." (John 6:70-71 KJV)

"One of you is a devil"

Judas may have cast an appropriate serpent-like shadow from the low, early-morning sun as he twirled in the breeze from his self-made hangman's tree, but as we read above, Judas cast a long serpent-like shadow prophetically, long before he actually committed it - all culminating in a few hours before Passover. The traitor's deal was made after Judas was rebuked by the Messiah at Bethany.


"26:6 Now when Jesus was in Bethany, in the house of Simon the leper, 26:7 There came unto him a woman having an alabaster box of very precious ointment, and poured it on his head, as he sat at meat.

26:8 But when his disciples saw it, they had indignation, saying, To what purpose is this waste? 26:9 For this ointment might have been sold for much, and given to the poor.

26:10 When Jesus understood it, he said unto them, Why trouble ye the woman? for she hath wrought a good work upon me. 26:11 For ye have the poor always with you; but me ye have not always. 26:12 For in that she hath poured this ointment on my body, she did it for my burial. 26:13 Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, that this woman hath done, be told for a memorial of her.

26:14 Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went unto the chief priests, 26:15 And said unto them, What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you? And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver. 26:16 And from that time he sought opportunity to betray him." (Matthew 26:6-16 KJV)

John's account of the rebuke was more specific as to which of the disciples "had indignation" at the anointing of Jesus: "one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot." Despite his protests against the "waste," "This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag." Judas was a liar and a thief - that was his ingrained character before the betrayal.

"12:1 Then Jesus six days before the passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was which had been dead, whom he raised from the dead. 12:2 There they made him a supper; and Martha served: but Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with him. 12:3 Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment.

12:4 Then saith one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, which should betray him, 12:5 Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor? 12:6 This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein." (John 12:1-6 KJV)

Satan cannot penetrate a "heart" where the Holy Spirit dwells, but Satan can easily infect a "heart" of a liar and a thief - and so he did with Judas, who then went and made a deal with other men whose hearts were filled with lust for carnal pride and gain, rather than the love of the Truth (see also Lethal Lust).

"22:1 Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover. 22:2 And the chief priests and scribes sought how they might kill him; for they feared the people. 22:3 Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve. 22:4 And he went his way, and communed with the chief priests and captains, how he might betray him unto them. 22:5 And they were glad, and covenanted to give him money." (Luke 22:1-5 KJV)

Perhaps the most stark statement made about Judas Iscariot, by the Son of God, was "it had been good for that man if he had not been born." That occurred at "the last supper," which unlike for Judas, for the Messiah and all of the others was not their last supper - they have an eternity of suppers coming.


"26:17 Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare for thee to eat the passover?

26:18 And he said, Go into the city to such a man, and say unto him, The Master saith, My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at thy house with my disciples. 26:19 And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them; and they made ready the passover.

26:20 Now when the even was come, he sat down with the twelve. 26:21 And as they did eat, he said, Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me.

26:22 And they were exceeding sorrowful, and began every one of them to say unto him, Lord, is it I?

26:23 And he answered and said, He that dippeth his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me. 26:24 The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.

26:25 Then Judas, which betrayed him, answered and said, Master, is it I?

He said unto him, Thou hast said.

26:26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.

26:27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. 26:29 But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom.

26:30 And when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives." (Matthew 26:17-30 KJV)

Once again, John's account is more specific about Judas. It seems that John had found reason to "keep an eye on" Judas. John records that Judas left the "last supper" while all of the others remained with the Messiah. Judas "went immediately out: and it was night" - to gather the gang that he would then lead right to the Son of God.

"13:24 Simon Peter therefore beckoned to him, that he should ask who it should be of whom he spake.

13:25 He then lying on Jesus' breast saith unto him, Lord, who is it?

13:26 Jesus answered, He it is, to whom I shall give a sop, when I have dipped it. And when he had dipped the sop, he gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon. 13:27 And after the sop Satan entered into him.

Then said Jesus unto him, That thou doest, do quickly. 13:28 Now no man at the table knew for what intent he spake this unto him. 13:29 For some of them thought, because Judas had the bag, that Jesus had said unto him, Buy those things that we have need of against the feast; or, that he should give something to the poor. 13:30 He then having received the sop went immediately out: and it was night." (John 13:24-30 KJV)

The Messiah and the eleven apostles (minus the traitor) then crossed over to the nearby Mount of Olives (see Crossing The Kidron). The Lord prayed (see How To Pray), and then the betrayer came with the mob to arrest Him.

The Kidron Valley

"26:37 And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. 26:38 Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me.

26:39 And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.

26:40 And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour? 26:41 Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.

26:42 He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.

26:43 And he came and found them asleep again: for their eyes were heavy. 26:44 And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words.

26:45 Then cometh he to his disciples, and saith unto them, Sleep on now, and take your rest: behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 26:46 Rise, let us be going: behold, he is at hand that doth betray me.

26:47 And while he yet spake, lo, Judas, one of the twelve, came, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and elders of the people. 26:48 Now he that betrayed him gave them a sign, saying, Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he: hold him fast. 26:49 And forthwith he came to Jesus, and said, Hail, master; and kissed him.

26:50 And Jesus said unto him, Friend, wherefore art thou come?

Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took him." (Matthew 26:37-50 KJV)

Peter then drew his sword and attempted to defend the King. Unfortunately, Judas was not the one that Peter connected with, but instead "struck a servant of the high priest."

"26:51 And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest's, and smote off his ear.

26:52 Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword. 26:53 Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels? 26:54 But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be?" (Matthew 26:37-54 KJV)

The Messiah was then tortured and mocked through the night. After hearing and witnessing at least part of the atrocity, Judas "repented himself" and returned the blood money to the "chief priests and elders." He then went out and hanged himself - which itself is proof that he did not truly repent - if he had, he would not have committed an act that denies the forgiveness that is available to everyone who truly repents. Also, in doing so, he further disqualified himself as an apostle because among the twelve "must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection" (Acts 1:22 KJV). Only Judas, by his own free action, failed to "see" (physically and otherwise) the resurrection.

Swinging In The Breeze As prophesied by Jeremiah ("Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet"), the blood money was used for the burial place of Judas. Although Judas did not permit the Messiah to forgive him (by genuine repentance, rather than just "repent himself"), Judas inadvertently permitted the Messiah to pay for his burial with the very money that the betrayer was paid to betray Him.

"27:1 When the morning was come, all the chief priests and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus to put him to death: 27:2 And when they had bound him, they led him away, and delivered him to Pontius Pilate the governor.

27:3 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, 27:4 Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood.

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

27:5 And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself.

27:6 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. 27:7 And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in. 27:8 Wherefore that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day. 27:9 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; 27:10 And gave them for the potter's field, as the Lord appointed me." (Matthew 27:1-10 KJV)

Fact Finder: What made Satan (and Judas) a traitor?
See Satan's Fall: From Conservative To Liberal

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This Day In History, March 30

1406: James I of Scotland was captured and imprisoned by Henry IV of England.

1492: King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella signed a decree to expel all Jews from Spain (with one possible exception - some historians believe that Christopher Columbus was of Jewish ancestry).

1533: King Henry VIII of England divorced his first wife, Catherine of Aragon (Catherine was the Spanish-born daughter of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain - the Spanish monarchs for whom Christopher Columbus was an explorer). It was Henry's divorces that led to Britain's eventual break with the Roman Catholic Church.

1806: Joseph Bonaparte (brother of Napoleon Bonaparte) was proclaimed king of Naples.

1856: The Treaty of Paris was signed to end the Crimean War.

1863: William, Prince of Denmark, was recognized as king of Greece and took the title George I.

1867: A treaty for the purchase of Alaska from Russia for $7.2 million, approximately two cents an acre, was submitted to the U.S. Senate.

1917: The Russian provisional government accepted the idea of an independent Poland.

1936: Britain announced a naval construction program of 38 new warships, the largest construction program in 15 years.

1941: The German Afrika Korps under General Erwin Rommel began its first offensive against British forces in Libya.

1972: During the Vietnam civil war ("north" and "south" Vietnam were a creation of French colonial forces in the 1950s), 120,000 North Vietnamese troops and thousands of Vietcong guerrillas launched a massive 3-wave invasion deep into South Vietnam.

1973: The U.S. military involvement in the Vietnam civil war came to a formal end when the last U.S. prisoner was released and the last soldier left.

1981: U.S. President Ronald Reagan, press secretary James Brady, and secret service agent Timothy McCarthy were shot by John Hinckley in Washington.

2002: Queen Elizabeth, the widow of King George VI and the mother of Queen Elizabeth II, died at age 101.


Copyright © Wayne Blank