Wednesday of Holy Week, Year A; 12th April, 2017.
At that time one of the Twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, “What will you give me if I deliver him to you?” And they paid him thirty pieces of silver. And from that moment he began to look for an opportunity to betray him.
When it was evening, he sat at the table with the twelve; and as they were eating, he said, “Truly I say to you, one of you will betray me.” And they were sorrowful and began to say to him one after another, “Is it I, Lord?” He answered, “He who has dipped his hand in the dish with me will betray me. The Son of Man goes as it is written of him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been better for that man if he had not been born.” Judas, who betrayed him, said, “Is it I, Master?” He said to him, “You have said so.”
Matthew 26:14-16, 20-25
Betrayal. How bitter and hurtful it can be when you realize you are about to be betrayed by one you call ‘friend’. How worse off it gets when the person to betray you still claims an undying loyalty to you amidst such betrayal. Ceasar probably would have felt this towards Brutus. But then again, he was almost dead before it dawned on him what had really transpired. But our Lord Jesus Christ knew from the onset, and each time he talked about the betrayal that would lead to His death, we can only imagine the pain He felt when His traitor felt no remorse whatsoever and acted all innocent. “Thirty pieces of silver and then I can be rich,” Judas probably said to himself. But he failed to realize that he was selling the best riches he could ever have had for a few coins. Thirty pieces of silver over the salvation His Master was bringing him.
We at times act like Judas Iscariot: selling ourselves short of the price Christ has bought us with. We claim to be Christians when our hearts and minds are far from the Christ-like living; we choose the world’s pleasures and possessions over the joy and salvation our Lord Jesus Christ offers us; we pretend to have this undying love for God when we await moments to seek our desires which only His love can fulfill.
But today, Christ looks at us lovingly, with hopes that we stop living in pretence and start living up to the price He shed his Precious Blood for us with, which even a million pieces of gold can’t buy. May we gain the graces to be loyal to our Saviour so that whenever we share in his Passover, whenever we partake in the Holy Eucharist, we may with clean conscience and pure hearts, dine with Him knowing it wouldn’t be us who will be guilty of betrayal.