35. Do What You’ve Come For
Now he who was betraying Him gave them a sign, saying, “Whomever I kiss, He is the one; seize Him.” Immediately Judas went to Jesus and said, “Hail, Rabbi!” and kissed Him. And Jesus said to him, “Friend, do what you have come for.” (Matthew 26:48-50)
Now, it’s part of my smart-alack nature to think that when Jesus said friend, He was being sarcastic. But Jesus wasn’t like that. Rather than imposing sarcasm upon our Lord’s statement, we really see His humble and gracious nature. Friend meant friend; and Jesus reminds Judas to the very end what kind of relationship he had enjoyed with his Lord. But Jesus also knew what Judas was doing, and Judas knew that Jesus knew. Judas came face to face, one last time, with understanding and grace.
Paul quotes this passage from Proverbs, so Judas could have known it: “But if your enemy is hungry, feed him, and if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” ( Romans 12:20; Proverbs 25:21-22). How far must we go, before the Lord will no longer be gracious? Is there a line we cross where we can never turn back?
Friend, do what you have come for is a very intentional response on the part of Christ. I suppose the purpose of Judas being here, and betraying his Lord, was sealed just before the Passover: And Satan entered into Judas who was called Iscariot, belonging to the number of the twelve. And he went away and discussed with the chief priests and officers how he might betray Him to them. They were glad and agreed to give him money. So he consented, and began seeking a good opportunity to betray Him to them apart from the crowd. ( Luke 22:3-6) He had a new purpose at this point; and that purpose drove him to the Garden and to his betrayal.
Purposes and causes come and go as we switch allegiances, alliances, and loyalties along the way. But doesn’t it make sense to give our allegiance, our loyalty, our love and our very lives to One Who is always faithful? To the One Who understands us and is gracious to us?
So… what—or Who—is your purpose?