“Then one of the Twelve—the one called Judas Iscariot—went to the chief priests and asked, “What would you give me if I handed him over to you?” So they counted out for him thirty silver coins. From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over.”
Judas was the treasurer of the disciples. He held the purse strings, so to speak. We don’t believe he decided to betray Jesus on the spur of the moment. This could have been his plan all along. He might have even thought about dipping his hand into the purse before.
Further reading in this chapter has the disciples planning the group’s celebration of the Passover. He instructs them to tell a certain man who owns the house where they will gather.
He tells them to say, “The teacher says: My appointed time is near. I am going to celebrate the Passover with my disciples at your house.’”
During the celebration, Jesus announces that one on his disciples will betray him. Judas actually tries to deny that he’s the culprit. But Jesus doesn’t let him get away with it.
Later in the evening, Judas arrives at the garden of Gethsemane, leading a group of misguided men. Judas greets Jesus with a kiss, a prearranged signal for the group to arrest the Lord.
In the next chapter (Chapter27), Judas is overcome with shame because of what he had done. His words are memorable, Ï have sinned for I have betrayed innocent blood.” The priests chose to have nothing to do with the fact they had paid Judas to do the dirty work of betrayal. Judas became so angry about how the priests reacted that he threw the money ïnto the temple and left,”(Matthew 27:5) He went out and took his own life.
The priests couldn’t receive the money because it was “blood money.” They bought a field and used it to bury foreigners.
In these scenes, the only one who acted admirably was Jesus. Judas Iscariot made a series of horrible decisions that he quickly regretted. He felt remorse for his behavior and tried to right the wrong. He chose to end his life because of his anguish. The priests acted shamefully. They wanted Jesus out of their lives, no matter the cost. In their shortsightedness, I believe they didn’t count on Judas’ trying to return the money. I also believe they were not remorseful that Judas met the end he did.