Blessed… It’s Not Me, Is It?

On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, the disciples came to Jesus and said, “Where do you want us to prepare for you to eat the Passover meal?” He replied, “Go into the city, to a certain man, and say, ‘The teacher says, “My time is near. I’m going to celebrate the Passover with my disciples at your house.” ’” The disciples did just as Jesus instructed them. They prepared the Passover. That evening he took his place at the table with the twelve disciples. As they were eating he said, “I assure you that one of you will betray me.” Deeply saddened, each one said to him, “I’m not the one, am I, Lord?” He replied, “The one who will betray me is the one who dips his hand with me into this bowl.  The Human One goes to his death just as it is written about him. But how terrible it is for that person who betrays the Human One! It would have been better for him if he had never been born.” Now Judas, who would betray him, replied, “It’s not me, is it, Rabbi?” Jesus answered, “You said it” (Matthew 26:17-25, Common English Bible).

“One of you will betray me,” Jesus said.

Then, in turn, each of the disciples asked, “It isn’t me, is it Lord?”

Even Judas, though he had to know it was he, took his turn asking Jesus, “It isn’t me, is it Lord?” I find it interesting that Judas, knowing the deal he made with the Pharisees and Sadducees, that he would ask Jesus the question. He was the only one who knew the answer. Well, him and Jesus.

The truth is, while Judas is the one who would betray Jesus, doing so for personal, financial gain, it could have been any of the disciples. More frightening still, if Jesus were to make the same statement today he made back then, “One of you will betray me,” we might respond by asking, “It’s not me, is it?”

When the disciples bickered among themselves, vying for the best spots, they betrayed Jesus. When the disciples tried to hush those in need so as not to bother Jesus, they betrayed Jesus. When Peter wanted to build three monuments and stay on the Mountain of Transfiguration, he betrayed Jesus. The list could go on. In truth, though Judas was the boldest about it, it could have been any of the twelve.

It could also be us. When we fail to love our neighbor, we betray Jesus. When we fail to worship God in the way God calls us, we betray Jesus. When we put other things in life ahead of our relationship with the Risen Christ, we betray Jesus.

In yesterday and today’s lessons, Judas openly betrayed Jesus. As for the rest of us, we are more often than not, much quieter in our betrayal, far less obvious than was Judas.

But, as we shall see, though the remaining eleven could have and did betray Jesus by the things they do, grace was present for them. When they betrayed, they weren’t banished from the group. As time would move forward, despite their betrayal they grew to fulfill their mission in the early church. That is grace.

That God continues to give us opportunities to serve represents opportunities for us to move forward with the ministries God has given us. Just as it was grace for the eleven, it is also grace for us. God still wants to use us. Despite all we may have done to hinder the Kingdom, God wants us to be at work for His glory anyway. That is grace.

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy and Thankfulness,

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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