do your actions betray god?
Judas "kept looking for an opportunity to hand [Jesus] over." —Matthew 26:16
Judas was disappointed in Jesus. Like many Jews of his time, Judas likely expected the Messiah to be a nationalistic hero, one who would cast out the occupying Roman armies and liberate Jerusalem. In spending three years with Jesus, Judas gradually came to realize that Jesus was not interested in being the kind of Messiah Jews expected. Jesus made it clear to the apostles that He was interested in freeing people from sin (see e.g. Jn 8:34-36). He also made it clear that He accepted people from all nations (see e.g. Mt 12:21). Jesus accepted suffering and He gave liberally to the poor. Judas began his apostleship by performing great works of power in casting out demons. That must have been exhilarating. But gradually, Jesus taught that His ministry was not based on worldly values. Day after day, Judas' hopes were dashed.
Judas Iscariot is an example for us today. How does God "disappoint" us now? By promoting chastity or poverty? By not answering your prayers as you had hoped when you took the big step of praying in front of your unbelieving family members? By allowing weakness and suffering? By allowing a loved one to die? By failing to punish the wicked? By promoting mercy and forgiveness rather than punishing those who hurt you? We must constantly be on the watch, lest we, like Judas, betray God to others out of disappointed hopes.
Prayer: Father, set a guard over my mouth and heart so that I may never betray You. May all my actions, words, and thoughts glorify You (1 Cor 10:31).
Promise: "The Lord God has given me a well-trained tongue, that I might know how to speak to the weary a word that will rouse them." Is 50:4
Praise: Carol's patient love of her children was a main factor in the eventual return of both children to the Lord and the Church.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, September 24, 2020
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