New Life Sunday – Tuesday, Friday and Sunday

 

Today is “Good Friday.” A time for us to remember and reflect on the death of our Savior. Leading up to that most incredible day in history, several Gospel writers share a touching story that likely occurred on the Tuesday before the crucifixion. Mary, a close friend of Jesus who had recently experienced the resurrection of her brother Lazarus, wanted to anoint Jesus in a special way. It was a beautiful scene.
 
Leigh-Ann wrote this beautiful insight as a follow up to the sermon about Mary anointing Jesus from this past Sunday…

During that scene, a few disciples said among themselves: “Why was the ointment wasted like that? ‘For this ointment could have been sold for more than three hundred (days wages) and given to the poor.’ And they scolded her…” They missed it, but Jesus did not.  He rebuked them openly for it…defending her act of love.

What fascinated me was the very next verse, “Then Judas went to the chief priests in order to betray him to them. And when they heard it, they were glad and promised to give him money. And he sought an opportunity to betray him.” 

It never occurred to me…Judas had made up his mind about Jesus then and there in that room…when the ointment was wasted.
 
You see, Judas was the “keeper of the money” for Jesus and His disciples. So he felt that keeping the finances was his gifting. When he saw this morbid “waste” of money, everything he’d been wrongly thinking about Jesus was confirmed. That was enough for Judas- it was over, and he sought to rid the fellow disciples of this “fake”- he felt as if he were on some sort of crusade for right. But here’s the problem:
1) He’d already lost trust for Jesus on the way, and because he never went to Jesus to try to understand, he only could see the worst in Him.
2) He never asked Jesus to help him understand- he didn’t want to admit the doubts he’d been carrying for quite some time.
3) He couldn’t see Jesus’ heart- and he didn’t want to see his heart.
4) He justified doing wrong to someone in order to “make things right”, and hey, it would put money back in the treasury, right? So he felt he was protecting the guys…and crowds…around him. His way was way better.

The crazy part is that after he did that, Judas still was around Jesus and the other disciples, waiting, striving for his opportunity to prove he was right. He was so confident that he was right and that he was, in a sense, a sort of “savior” for this group, he eagerly awaited his chance to prove to them how he could see what others couldn’t see. In fact, even when Jesus called him out, and told the entire group that one would betray Him, it didn’t shake Judas! He played right along! But, he was FULLY persuaded that what he perceived and what he felt about someone was 100% accurate!

Wow…am I Judas? How many times do I see what I want to see, being blinded by my own righteous indignation? And are there times I actually choose to sin in order to do right? Whether it’s sin of pride, by looking down on someone else; or the sin of gossip; or the sin of hatred? Have I ever not seen the beam in my own eye, while trying to expose a splinter in another’s?

Unfortunately,  the error of Judas took lives, but my errors don’t have to….May God grant me the ability to see Christ for who He is, me for who I am, and others the way that Jesus did: with compassion and love. May I be able to see beyond this world and see how my actions impact eternity.
 
As a result of God’s grace which planned and allowed the crucifixion of Jesus, I am forgiven and saved. I am so excited to continue this story and application this Sunday. We have planned some special times of worship, prayer and meditation to go along with the sermon to help us praise and glorify our Savior, Jesus Christ.
 
He is Risen!
Troy

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