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Humble Hero

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    Judas’s Last Opportunity to Repent

    In everything that Christ said to His disciples, there was something with which Judas, in his heart, disagreed. Under his influence, the leaven of discord was doing its work. Jesus saw that Satan was opening up a channel through which to influence the other disciples. Yet Judas made no outward complaint until the feast in Simon’s house. When Mary anointed the Savior’s feet, Judas showed his covetous attitude. When Jesus reproved him, wounded pride and desire for revenge broke down the barriers. This will be the experience of everyone who persists in tampering with sin.HH 330.6

    But Judas was not yet completely hardened. Even after he had twice committed himself to betray the Savior, he had opportunity to repent. At the Passover supper, Jesus tenderly included Judas when He ministered to the disciples. But Judas did not respond to love’s last appeal. The feet that Jesus had washed went out to do the betrayer’s work.HH 331.1

    Judas reasoned that if Jesus was supposed to be crucified, the event must happen. His act would not change the result. If Jesus was not supposed to die, Judas’s betrayal would only force Him to deliver Himself. He decided that he had made a sharp bargain in betraying his Lord.HH 331.2

    Judas did not, however, believe that Christ would permit Himself to be arrested. In betraying Him, Judas intended to teach Him a lesson. He wanted to make the Savior careful to treat him with due respect from then on. Often when the scribes and Pharisees had picked up stones to throw at Him, He had made His escape. Since He had escaped so many traps, He certainly would not now allow Himself to be taken.HH 331.3

    Judas decided to put the matter to the test. If Jesus really was the Messiah, the people would proclaim Him king. Judas would have the credit for having placed the king on David’s throne, and this would secure the first position for him, next to Christ, in the new kingdom.HH 331.4

    In the Garden, Judas said to the leaders of the mob, “Hold him fast [securely].” Matthew 26:48, KJV. He fully believed that Christ would escape. Then if they blamed him, he could say, “Did I not tell you to hold Him fast?”HH 331.5

    In amazement Judas saw the Savior allow Himself to be led away. At every movement he looked for Him to surprise His enemies by appearing before them as the Son of God. But as hour after hour went by, a terrible fear came to the traitor that he had sold his Master to His death.HH 331.6

    As the trial came to a close, Judas could no longer endure his guilty conscience. Suddenly a hoarse voice rang through the hall: “He is innocent! Spare Him, O Caiaphas!” The tall form of Judas pressed through the startled crowd. His face was pale, and sweat stood on his forehead. Rushing to the judgment throne, he threw down in front of the high priest the pieces of silver that had been the price of his Lord’s betrayal. Grasping Caiaphas’s robe, he begged him to release Jesus. Caiaphas angrily shook him off, but he did not know what to say. The treachery of the priests was plain to everyone. They had bribed the disciple to betray his Master.HH 331.7

    “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.” But the high priest, regaining his composure, answered, “What is that to us? You see to it!” Matthew 27:4. The priests had been willing to make Judas their tool, but they despised his low character.HH 331.8

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