Easter 2020 Devotional – Betrayed
by Charmain Hibberd
Marketing Assistant (Writer), CBN Europe
We’re on Day 3 of our Easter 2020 Devotional series and today we will be looking into the betrayal of Jesus by one of His very own disciples.
When he had finished praying, Jesus left with his disciples and crossed the Kidron Valley. On the other side there was a garden, and he and his disciples went into it.
Now Judas, who betrayed him, knew the place, because Jesus had often met there with his disciples. So Judas came to the garden, guiding a detachment of soldiers and some officials from the chief priests and the Pharisees. They were carrying torches, lanterns and weapons.
Jesus, knowing all that was going to happen to him, went out and asked them, “Who is it you want?”
“Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied.
“I am he,” Jesus said. (And Judas the traitor was standing there with them.) When Jesus said, “I am he,” they drew back and fell to the ground.
Again he asked them, “Who is it you want?”
“Jesus of Nazareth,” they said.
Jesus answered, “I told you that I am he. If you are looking for me, then let these men go.” This happened so that the words he had spoken would be fulfilled: “I have not lost one of those you gave me.”
Then Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant, cutting off his right ear. (The servant’s name was Malchus.)
(John 18:1-10 NIV)
‘Jesus fully realised all that was going to happen to him, so he stepped forward to meet them. “Who are you looking for?” he asked. “Jesus the Nazarene,” they replied. “I am he,” Jesus said.’
(John 18:4-5 NLT – emphasis added)
Opportunities in Disguise
I once heard a message delivered by a Pastor in the States that, in a nutshell, said that the difference between a wasted and an accepted opportunity, is your decision to either step away from the fight or towards it.
Now, I’m sure that most of us would rather step away from a fight or struggle of any kind. As humans we tend to lean more towards being creatures of comfort rather than creatures of adversity.
However, the highlighted scripture from today reminds me that Jesus knew that His greatest opportunity – saving the world – meant stepping towards the fight.
For Jesus to step towards His fight, He had to be betrayed. Jesus knew that Judas was going to betray Him and that his betrayal was actually necessary to the plot line of His story*.
(*For another insightful article focussing on the betrayal of Jesus, click here.)
Isn’t it remarkable that, even after sowing into the life of Judas and spending time building him up as a disciple, Jesus did all of this fully aware that, one day, Judas would choose money over loyalty?
When hard times in our lives come along, we are often quick to avoid facing them, aren’t we? But what if the very hardship that you are facing is what is going to shape your greatest opportunity?
Just as Jesus was betrayed so that He would face His cross, what opportunity in your life is wrapped up in a fight?
In each day of our Easter 2020 Devotional we will have some new questions to ask you regarding what you have read. Why not take some time, listen to the music below, and contemplate what God would say to you today?
Q1. What does today’s scripture reveal to you?
Q2. What fight are you running from that you could be stepping towards?
Q3. What could change in your life if you met the challenge head on?