I’ve wondered, at times, what kind of man this Judas was. What he looked like, how he acted, who his friends were. I guess, I’ve stereotyped him. I’ve always pictured him as a wiry, beady eyed, sly, wormy fellow, pointed beard and all. I’ve pictured him estranged from the other apostles. Friendless. Distant. Probably the result of a broken home. A juvenile delinquent in his youth. Yet I wonder if that is so true. We have no evidence (save Juda’s silence) that would suggest that he was isolated. At the Last Supper, when Jesus said that His betrayer would be at the table with Him, we don’t find the apostles immediately turning to Judas as the logical traitor. No, I think we’ve got Judas pegged wrong. Perhaps he was just the opposite. Instead of sly and wiry, maybe he was robust and jovial. Rather than quiet and introverted, he could have been outgoing and well-meaning. I just don’t know. But for all the things we don’t know about Judas, there is one thing we know for sure: he had no relationship with the Master. He had seen Jesus, but he did not know Him. He had heard Jesus, but he did not understand Him. He had religion, but no relationship. As Satan worked his way around the table in the Upper Room, he needed a special kind of man to betray the Lord. He needed a man who had seen Jesus, but who did not know Him. He needed a man who knew the actions of Jesus, but had missed out on the mission of Jesus. Judas was this man. He knew the empire, but he had never known the MAN. We learn this timeless lesson from the betrayer. Satan’s best tools of destruction are not from outside the church, they are within the church. It will die from corrosion within — from those who bear the name of Jesus but have never met Him, and from those who have religion, but no relationship. Judas bore the cloak of religion, but he never knew the heart of Christ. Let’s make it our goal to know Him — deeply.
Out of love for one another…….
We are currently allowing mask use to be optional during the Sunday morning Bible Study and worship assembly and Wednesday evening Bible study. We recommend that those who are unvaccinated or have personal health concerns to continue to wear a mask. We thank you for your consideration of and care for others. Masks are available if you need one.
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34-35 ESV)
Scripture of the Week
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy , to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God — which is your spiritual worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — His good, pleasing and perfect will.” ~~ Romans 12:1-2
Something to Smile About
Curtis and Leroy saw an ad in the newspaper and bought a mule for $100. The farmer agreed to deliver the mule the next day. The next morning the farmer drove up and said, ―Sorry, fellows, I have some bad news, the mule died last night.‖ Curtis and Leroy replied, ―Well, then just give us our money back.‖
The farmer said, ―Can’t do that. I went and spent it already .‖They said, ―Okay then, just bring us the dead mule.‖ The farmer asked, ―What in the world ya’ll gonna do with a dead mule?‖ Curtis said, ―We gonna raffle him off ‖The farmer said, ―You can’t raffle off a dead mule!‖ Leroy said, ―We shore can! Heck, we don’t hafta tell nobody he’s dead!‖
A couple of weeks later, the farmer ran into Curtis and Leroy at the grocery store and asked, ―What’d you fellers ever do with that dead mule?‖ They said, ―We raffled him off like we said we wuz gonna do.‖
Leroy said, ―Shucks, we sold 1000 tickets fer two dollars apiece and made a profit of $1998.00.‖ The farmer said, ―My goodness, didn’t anyone complain?‖ Curtis said, ―Well, the feller who won got upset. So we gave him his two dollars back.‖ Curtis and Leroy now work for the government.
Think About It
The Bible is not a museum piece to be admired at a distance and dusted now and again. It is a treasure to be polished. It is a tool to be used. It is a light to be shined. It is a mirror to be viewed. It is a sword to be sharpened. It is a food to be digested. The poet worded it this way: “These has God married, and no man shall part, dust on the Bible, and drought in the heart.”
It is best to have a specific time each day. Many find it easier to study in the morning (Psalm 88:13; Mark 1:35). God’s mercies “are new every morning” (Lamentations 3:23). Some like to study on their lunch hour (Psalm 55:17; Acts 10:9). Others are night owls who focus best at night while it is quiet (Psalm 119: 148). Experiment with different times to see what works best for you. The most important thing is not to own a ―museum Bible.
– Dwight Fuqua Findlay church of Christ Sparta, TN