Jesus Faces the Ultimate Betrayal
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Betrayal always hurts. However, it especially hurts when you feel betrayed by someone close to you. There’s no worse feeling than believing someone is in your “circle”, your friend group, your support system – only to find out that they haven’t been genuine in the relationship.
When this has happened to me in the past, as many of us have experienced, my instinct has been to ignore it and retreat from the relationship. However, these situations remind me of Jesus’ response to the betrayal among His 12 disciples. What did Jesus do when betrayal occurred in the circle He created? How did Jesus respond to the heartache He experienced from those He ate dinner with and confided in? Let us follow His example of acknowledgment and grace in these circumstances.
In Matthew 26, Jesus addressed His disciples and stated what He knew to be true – that one of these men was conspiring to betray Him. Though heartbroken, Jesus continued on and even eventually prayed with His disciples, regardless of His imminent fate.
“Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Matthew 26:41 KJV).
Jesus cared for His disciples’ salvation, despite the betrayal from one of them. At the same time, Jesus did not let the betrayal go unnoticed; but rather used it as an example of how weak we are in the flesh.
Betrayal hurts, but it is only made bearable by the realization that we live in a fallen world that often allows space for betrayal and heartache; we are not perfect, and we fall short of Jesus’ example. When we realize this as Christians, it makes forgiveness possible. In addition to forgiveness, it brings peace and comfort knowing that Jesus has not only covered our sins, but also those who have wronged us.
Jesus does not want us to be walked on, as He Himself did not let others’ wrongdoings go unnoticed; however, when we realize that we too fall short daily in our walk with the Lord, we become humble enough to accept the things we cannot change – which includes the actions of others.
Next time you are dealing with deceit from an outside source, remember Jesus’ firm yet loving approach to insincerity – for this approach will leave you at peace, rather than feeling empty.
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