Passages to Read
For a full account of the events of this day, see Matthew 26:6–16, Mark 14:3–11, and Luke 22:3–6.
While Jesus is going about his business in Bethany, another story is taking place. Inside Jerusalem, a meeting is happening between members of the Sanhedrin (the Jewish religious body which had 71 members), and they are discussing how to get rid of Jesus once and for all. Aiding them and offering the greatest betrayal example of all time is Judas. We read in the scriptures provided today that Judas seeks the chief priests out, actively looking for an opportunity to betray Jesus.
Jesus predicted this (John 6:64; Matthew 26:2, 21) just as He predicted many other things that were to come. He would predict Peter’s three denials (Matthew 26:34), that the disciples would fall away and be scattered (Matthew 26:31; John 16:32; Zechariah 13:7) and that He would be, “lifted up from the earth” (John 12:32). The predictions of Holy Week affirm God’s plan is not only for Jesus, but for us. We can have confidence in knowing that His ways are greater than ours and not to lean on our own understanding.
On this Wednesday, we look at Judas doing the opposite of this. In exchange for 30 pieces of silver, Judas betrayed his friend, his mentor, and the Son of God. Later in in the book of Matthew, we read about Jesus sharing with the twelve disciples that someone among them has betrayed Him and already set in motion His death. Judas goes on to reveal his true self as a betrayer saying, “surely it is not I.” Jesus does not confront or cause discourse over
the meal that is taking place. He simply gives Judas time to reflect and struggle with the implications of his actions. What a struggle between good and evil, between being faithful versus betrayal, and choosing the temporary over the eternal.
Prayer and Reflection Point
Wednesday is a great day for personal reflection. How many times could we have been found saying, “surely it is not I, Lord” when we have chosen the things of this world over the things of God. Our struggle, like Judas, is choosing the eternal things of God versus what the world wants to offer us. In our reading today of Matthew 26:10, Jesus described the woman’s anointing Him with perfume as, “beautiful.” Would God call our daily worship of Him beautiful? Take time to examine your heart, motives, and daily life today.
Another point to reflect on today is the hurt that comes from betrayal. Do you harbor hurt, resentment, or other feelings of betrayal in your own life? Ask God to heal those feelings today and turn them over to Him. Consider if you need to seek reconciliation with someone you may have hurt as well.
Family Application and Map Check Point
Scripture doesn’t show us that Jesus traveled much this day. We see him in Bethany in the house of Simon, while Judas sneaks away to meet with the religious leaders to betray Jesus. This is a great time to talk about trust as a family. Ask your child what it means to trust someone. How do we know when we can trust those around us? How do we know that we can trust Jesus? You can refer to the many prophecies that He and others made about His coming life, death, and resurrection. A great family activity today to teach trust is to get a blindfold and take turns telling the blindfolded person where to turn and walk to find a specific object in the house.
Holy Week Timeline
• The Chief Priests and Scribes plotted to kill Jesus (Luke 22:1-6).
• Judas Iscariot agreed to betray Jesus for thirty pieces of silver (Matthew 26:14-16).