“Lord God, whose blessed Son our Savior gave his body to be whipped and his face to be spit upon: Give us the grace to accept joyfully the sufferings of the present time, confident of the glory that shall be revealed; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.
“Jesus was troubled in spirit, and declared, “Very truly, I tell you, one of you will betray me.” The disciples looked at one another, uncertain of whom he was speaking. One of his disciples—the one whom Jesus loved—was reclining next to him; Simon Peter, therefore, motioned to him to ask Jesus of whom he was speaking. So while reclining next to Jesus, he asked him, “Lord, who is it?” Jesus answered, “It is the one to whom I give this piece of bread when I have dipped it in the dish.” So when he had dipped the piece of bread, he gave it to Judas son of Simon Iscariot. After he received the piece of bread, Satan entered him. Jesus said to him, “Do quickly what you are going to do.” Now no one at the table knew why he said this to him. Some thought that, because Judas had the common purse, Jesus was telling him, “Buy what we need for the festival”; or, that he should give something to the poor. So, after receiving the piece of bread, he immediately went out. And it was night. When he had gone out, Jesus said, “Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself and will glorify him at once.”
Satan, the Prince of Darkness, is closing in on Jesus and he uses one of the apostles named Judas Iscariot to betray Jesus. God in his wisdom and sovereign providence allows Satan and Judas to be instruments in the march towards the defeat of Satan and our redemption by Jesus. Judas’s betrayal of Jesus through sinful and driven by his greed was sanctioned(permitted) by God for our good. Luke notes this in Acts 2:23 when he wrote that “this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men”. So in serving his own wicked desire, he unwittingly served the purpose and plan of God in the end. In other words, his betrayal of Jesus led to the death of Jesus which led to eternal salvation and glory for penitent sinners, the everlasting defeat of sin and Satan, and eternal glory to God.
Paul the apostle was right when he exclaimed and extolled the matchless wisdom of God in Romans 11:33:
“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!”
God cannot be trifled with- he always wins in the end. He will accomplish his purpose in spite of human wickedness and the shenanigans of Satan. To him be glory forevermore.
Credit: Bishop Felix Orji, OSB
Anglican Diocese of the West.