Friday, September 20, 2013

The Saddest Kiss of All

Matthew 26:49  Going at once to Jesus, Judas said, "Greetings, Rabbi!" and kissed Him.

It's more than a bit embarrassing to note that despite being an English teacher
for many years, and having a liking for idioms and colloquial expressions, I never
knew what the phrase.."The Kiss of Death." meant. That just shows the
frightening reality that people can so easily live their lives outside the knowledge
of the Bible, Jesus and the Gospel.

It's obvious that Judas was sending a signal to those who were about to
apprehend Jesus, one that he had previously discussed with them in exchange
for a handful of silver coins. It is also obvious that Jesus foreknew which of His
disciples would betray Him.

Matthew 26:23-25 The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with me will
betray me. The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him. But woe to
that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would be better for him if he had not
been born.
Then Judas, the one who would betray Him, said, "Surely you don't mean me,
Rabbi?
Jesus answered, "You have said so."

There is scripture that suggests that Satan entered Judas about this time. It's
interesting to wonder about the chain of events that we know had to play themselves
out for the divine plan for salvation to occur. The savage treatment and horrific
death that Jesus was to encounter were necessary and inevitable. He knew what
"the cup" entailed and willfully accepted the role that He had to play.

Judas may not have had a choice; it may have been part of the plan. He may have
had free will and made the decision based on some sort of rejection that the
messiah could die before doing what was expected or he may have been driven
by satan...  we can only speculate.

The reality is that this kiss of sadness was one of many events
that brought about the greatest gift ever given, the grace-filled path to
redemption and reconciliation with God. A gift paid in full by the blood of
Jesus.