Eyewitness to the Crucifixion: Judas, One of the Twelve

Judah Iscariot is one of the disciples of Jesus.  He is best known for his betrayal of Jesus, however before we discuss this momentous moment, let’s look at what else we know about him.

Six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus lived, whom Jesus had raised from the dead.   {John 12:1}

Judas has been with Jesus for three years now and seen Lazarus raised from the dead. Now the Passover has arrived and Jesus time is close at hand.  John 12:2-3 tells us Martha served a dinner in Jesus honor. While he is reclining at the table, Mary poured a pint of expensive perfume on Jesus feet, wiping them with her hair.

“But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected…”   {John 12:4}

Judas Iscariot is always mentioned in the gospels as the one who betrayed Jesus.  The gospel writers wanted to make sure everyone remembered his treachery.

Judas complained that Mary anointed Jesus feet

Notice also, how he objected to Mary’s act of love and honor to Jesus. He strongly disproved or disagreed with what she was doing. Not necessarily the act, but the money lost in the act.

 “Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year’s wages. He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.

Several interesting things are revealed about Judas Iscariot in this passage.

  • He was a thief and stole from others
  • He didn’t care about others
  • He was the keeper of the money bag for Jesus and the disciples
  • He stole from the money bag he was put in charge of

One source says the reality was “not that he cared for the poor, but [that] he was a thief, and had the money box; and he used to take what was put in it.”

Judas is what we would call a hypocrite.  Matthew Henry says, “Hypocrites, by less instances of worldliness, discover themselves to be ready for a compliance with greater temptations.”

“Leave her alone,” Jesus replied. “It was intended that she should save this perfume for the day of my burial.  {John 12:4-7}

Jesus chastises Judas and puts him in his place. Jesus knows what is to come and he knows it is soon. Can you see Judas squirming?

Jesus knows Judas will betray him and soon.

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