Hardly any issue about the Bible is debated more than the motivation of Judas for betraying Jesus. Some say it was money, suggesting that as keeper of the common purse, he had his hand in the till. But in the Gospel for today's Daily Office readings, he throws the 30 pieces of silver to the ground, hardly consoled by money. Others posit that he wanted an earthly revolt overthrowing the Romans and hoped the arrest would spark an insurrection. But if this was his thinking, he would have had no reason to facilitate an arrest away from the crowds with less hubbub.

What we do know if this: On Thursday morning, fingering Jesus seemed like a really, really good idea to Judas. By Friday, it seemed like an awful idea, awful enough that Judas took his own life in remorse.

Yesterday's brilliant idea often seems misguided in the light of a new day. We can become as easily infatuated with an idea as with a person. I don't think anyone has picked up Judas Iscariot as a patron saint; the St. Jude who is the patron of lost causes is a different disciple. But we would all do well to keep company with Judas Iscariot, who would be happy to say, "Slow down and think about that for a day or two!"

The art of the pause is not part of the Protestant Work Ethic. But there are times when the best advice is, "don't just do something; sit there!"

Pastor Kathleen Kelly,  
Interim Rector 
Judas receiving thirty pieces of silver for betraying Jesus, by János Pentelei Molnár, 1909.  
47535 State Hwy. 74
Palm Desert, CA 92260
See what's happening on our social sites