By DANIEL MCCABE—
“In sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart.” 1 Peter 1:22
Mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent lived a double life. By day he and Lois Lane worked for The Daily Planet in Manhattan, New York. But in a moment’s notice Clark would dash into a phone booth and be miraculously transformed into Superman, crime fighter and all-round do-gooder. He lived a double life, but in his case we like both the man and the superhero. Some people live double lives of a different sort. On the surface we are convinced they are upstanding citizens in the community, but then we hear the news that they were secretly involved in scandal and deceit. I don’t know how they can do it. It must be exhausting to keep up the charade day after day. Someone once said that a liar has to have a great memory, so that he doesn’t get caught in his lies.
Judas Iscariot lived a lie, a double life, and died a horrible death. Judas “Iscariot”—“the man from Kerioth”—hailed from a Southern town in Israel. That would make Judas the only Southerner in the band of Jesus’ twelve disciples. Yankees – 11. Confederates – 1. The gospel writers mention Judas Iscariot in each of their lists of the disciples, but always add the statement that Judas betrayed Jesus. Judas may have volunteered for the Big Brothers program, built houses with Habitat for Humanity, or donated regularly to the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, but his betrayal of Jesus, our Savior, would overshadow all else.
Judas looked and acted like a regular guy. His fellow disciples even chose him as treasurer, but John 12:6 describes a two-faced disciple who pretended to care about the poor while stealing from the money box right under everyone’s noses.
Are you faking it? Everyone thinks that you are an outstanding Christian. Maybe you’ve even convinced yourself of it, but I fear it’s just a matter of time, when the pressures come and it’s no longer easy to fake it, that you’re gonna cut and run from living for the Lord. Just like Judas.
Even the night before Jesus died when they all shared a last meal together, no one knew but Jesus that Judas was a two-faced con artist, a big fake, an Olympic champion fake. Later during the meal Jesus had announced, “One of you shall betray me” (John 13:21). All the disciples asked Jesus, “Is it I, Lord?” (Matthew 26:22). Now let’s watch Judas fake it. In Matthew 26:25 we read, “Then Judas, who was betraying Him, answered Him and said, ‘Rabbi, is it I?’”
A fake to the bitter end. And the Bible says that Judas soon after went out into the night. Into the dark. Forever alone. Small steps over years become a journey. A journey far from the joy of the Lord. But it’s never too late to retrace your steps. God forgives. Come home!
Further Reading: Matthew 26:17-30
Dr. Daniel McCabe is the pastor of Faith Bible Church in Spring, Texas. He is a contributing editor for The Jerusalem Connection Report. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.