Jesus Predicts His Betrayal

Posted by admin on 4 January 2015 in John |

John 13:18 - 30 (English Standard Version)

18 I am not speaking of all of you; I know whom I have chosen. But the Scripture will be fulfilled, ‘He who ate my bread has lifted his heel against me.’ 19 I am telling you this now, before it takes place, that when it does take place you may believe that I am he. 20 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”
21 After saying these things, Jesus was troubled in his spirit, and testified, “Truly, truly, I say to you, one of you will betray me.” 22 The disciples looked at one another, uncertain of whom he spoke. 23 One of his disciples, whom Jesus loved, was reclining at table at Jesus’ side, 24 so Simon Peter motioned to him to ask Jesus of whom he was speaking. 25 So that disciple, leaning back against Jesus, said to him, “Lord, who is it?” 26 Jesus answered, “It is he to whom I will give this morsel of bread when I have dipped it.” So when he had dipped the morsel, he gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot. 27 Then after he had taken the morsel, Satan entered into him. Jesus said to him, “What you are going to do, do quickly.” 28 Now no one at the table knew why he said this to him. 29 Some thought that, because Judas had the moneybag, Jesus was telling him, “Buy what we need for the feast,” or that he should give something to the poor. 30 So, after receiving the morsel of bread, he immediately went out. And it was night.

See v18.

18 I am not speaking of all of you; I know whom I have chosen. But the Scripture will be fulfilled, ‘He who ate my bread has lifted his heel against me.’

“I know whom I have chosen.”

His selection of Judas was not an accident or a failure in God’s plan. Jesus chose a betrayer among His 12 disciples (John 6:70–71) in order to fulfill the Scripture, namely, Psalm 41:9. As David was betrayed by his trusted table companion Ahithophel, who then hanged himself (2 Samuel 16:20–17:3, 23), so Judas, Jesus’ close companion, betrayed Him and then hanged himself. Though Judas’ deed was foreknown by God, he was fully culpable. [2]

“He who ate my bread has lifted his heel against me.” has been quoted from Psalm 41:9 (ESV).

9  Even my close friend in whom I trusted,
who ate my bread, has lifted his heel against me.

The long-term sharing of bread in the Middle East context was normally interpreted as referring either to a family member or a permanent guest at the table. To eat at one’s table was regarded as a symbol of acceptance growing out of the ancient camp context where acceptance of a stranger into the camp was symbolized by the sharing of a meal. To lift up the heel in a culture where displaying the bottom of the foot has been regarded as a breach of honor, especially after one had enjoyed acceptance at the meal, was the epitome of shaming the host and the equivalent to being a traitorous scoundrel. [1]

See v19. The fact that Jesus predicted accurately for his disciples what was going to take place means that he fit fully the requirement for the identification of a legitimate prophet according to the test established in Deuteronomy 18:21. Moreover, the fulfillment of Jesus’ prediction was to be understood by his disciples as a confirmation of his identity and mission. [1]

See v20.

20 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”

Here, the point is that the disciples as a community of faith are to be viewed as belonging to the intimate relationship of Jesus with the Father.

See v21. Here, we see that the betrayal of Judas caused Jesus troubled in His spirit. He was overwhelmed by sorrow. No one wants to face unjust, cruel & imminent death, especially by the betrayal of a friend. I can see how sad Jesus would be. The Savior sent for us by God was experiencing injustice and sorrow when He deserved Novel Peace prize.

See v22.

22 The disciples looked at one another, uncertain of whom he spoke.

That anyone in this close fellowship could do this to Jesus was almost beyond comprehension. Judas had covered his tracks so well that none of the others suspected him.[2]

In v23 - 26, Peter motioned to Disciple John to ask Jesus who the betrayer is. So Jesus answered to John that He would give the morsel to that person. And it was given to Judas Iscariot.

After Judas had taken the morsel, Satan entered into him (27a).

“Satan entered into him” is one of the most terrible expressions in the Scriptures. Satan now used Judas as his tool to accomplish his will.[2]

Note that it was not a devil but Satan. From this moment, what Judas would do was Satanic because Satan overtook him.The war was taking place between Jesus and Satan.

Giving the morsel to Judas was an uncaught sign of recognition to John, but it was also the Lord’s final extension of grace to Judas. Hosts giving a morsel of bread to a guest was a sign of friendship. How ironic that Jesus’ act of friendship to Judas signaled Judas’ betrayal of friendship. [2]

See v27b. Jesus said to him, “What you are going to do, do quickly.”

Jesus asked Judas to go ahead because Judas’ heart was stubbornly refusing to do the right thing.

Similarly Jesus said in Matthew 23:32 (NIV).

32 Go ahead, then, and complete what your ancestors started!

Jesus knew not only Judas was a betrayer but also where his plan was up to. And Jesus was not just a victim of betrayal but in control to obey God’s will and fulfill the Scripture.

The command to go on is but the echo of that mysterious appointment by which the sinner in the exercise of his own corrupted will becomes the instrument of the purposes of God. [3]

See v28.

28 Now no one at the table knew why he said this to him.

Disciples didn’t know that Judas had discussed with the chief priests and the officers of the temple guard how to betray Jesus (Luke 22:4) and intended to hand Him over to their hands that night. Judas could deceive human beings. But Jesus knew all. No one can hide from God. We’d better live before God than man. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge (Proverbs 1:7a). We have limited knowledge and understanding. So, Proverbs 3:5, 6 says
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
6 in all your ways submit to him,
and he will direct your paths.

Some of Disciples thought Judas was asked to buy something for the feast or give something to the poor (29).

They did not think anything but good of Judas. [2]

As far as the disciples knew, Judas was a follower of Jesus, as strong in his commitment as any of them. That is one reason why Jesus warned in Matthew 13:24-30 that we should be careful about trying to point out the difference between the wheat and the weeds. [4]

In v30, Judas went out but it was night; the time was too late for buying something. Also ‘night’ has spiritual indication as below.

Judas was leaving the Light (John 8:12; John 12:35, 46) and going out into the darkness of sin (John 3:19) [2]. Judas went out into a spiritual night to accomplish the work of darkness [3].

References
[1] Borchert, G. L. (2002). John 12–21 (Vol. 25B, p. 89). Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers.
[2] Blum, E. A. (1985). John. In J. F. Walvoord & R. B. Zuck (Eds.), The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures (Vol. 2, p. 321). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.
[3] Lange, J. P., & Schaff, P. (2008). A commentary on the Holy Scriptures: John (p. 414-5). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.
[4] Gangel, K. O. (2000). John (Vol. 4, p. 254). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.

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