The disciple Peter speaks in Acts 1:17 Judas was one of us and shared in the ministry with us…21 “So now we must choose a replacement for Judas from among the men who were with us the entire time we were traveling with the Lord Jesus— 22 from the time he was baptized by John until the day he was taken from us. Whoever is chosen will join us as a witness of Jesus’ resurrection.”
I’m continuing my look at the first chapter of each Bible book from the perspective of my three New Years’s questions. In some respects Acts 1 is easy: Judas made the one of the most heart wrenching bad choices on record. Look at the credentials we can assume he had because he was a chosen disciple: he was one of the “men who were with us the entire time we were traveling with the Lord Jesus—from the time he was baptized by John until the day he was taken from us.” Whatever Judas was committed to in those years required real sacrifice and hardship and then everything was not only wasted but destroyed. How could that possibly be?
These men were face to face with God “in the flesh” and even that wasn’t enough to protect Judas from himself. Judas was a victim of his own spirit, his own mind and his own answers on the night he betrayed Jesus. Those are the most important facts of this pitiful story that remind us to be thankful. God has chosen to promise us protection and assurance of grace and forgiveness through the indwelling Spirit of his Son.
Judas’s story is ugly but there is beauty in this same scripture that changes the story. It’s the backstory of the “other” betrayer, Peter. Peter is the disciple who surrendered his own denials made that same night to the reality of Jesus and God’s promise of grace and forgiveness to become “a witness of Jesus’ resurrection” and it’s promise for us today.