John 18:4-9 Jesus fully realized all that was going to happen to Him, so He stepped forward to meet them. "Who are you looking for?" He asked. 5 "Jesus the Nazarene," they replied. "I AM He," Jesus said. (Judas, who betrayed Him, was standing with them.) 6 As Jesus said "I AM He," they all drew back and fell to the ground! 7 Once more He asked them, "Who are you looking for?" And again they replied, "Jesus the Nazarene." 8 "I told you that I AM He," Jesus said. "And since I am the One you want, let these others go." 9 He did this to fulfill His own statement: "I did not lose a single one of those You have given Me."
Luke 22:48 But Jesus said, "Judas, would you betray the Son of Man with a kiss?"
Jesus is in the garden praying as he waits for the betrayer to make his way there. He knows that he is coming and that his time is near, Jesus knew that stepping into Gethsemane was the first in a series of events that would lead to his trial and crucifixion.
The only one of the twelve that isn't in the garden is Judas but he will be there soon. For Judas it is time to stop wasting his life living a lie and deceiving the other eleven men in his small group. Those eleven guys are going to be in complete shock, none of them had any clue about what was in Judas' heart, none of them had a good reason to suspect Judas and they didn't even get it when Jesus told them in the Upper Room.
The guards were unnecessary!
Judas proves that he doesn't really know Jesus as he enters the garden with a large group of temple guards. (Matthew 26:55) There wasn't any resistance, the Shepherd will willingly and boldly lay down His life for His sheep, the crowd could have been much smaller and they certainly could have left their torches and weapons at home.
Did Judas think they were going to have to search the garden or fight the other disciples? Did he think that Jesus was going to make a miraculous escape like he had done before? Would any number of soldiers make a difference if Jesus choose to get away?
The kiss was unnecessary!
Nobody would think anything was wrong when Judas walked up and gave Jesus a kiss. It was common practice in their culture for a Rabbi to be greeted with a kiss as a sign of love and devotion but that was not the purpose of this kiss.
Even in the dark there wasn't any problem identifying Jesus, he didn't resist or hide but instead He calmly declared who He was and surrendered to them, there wasn't any chance that they would get the wrong guy.
Psalms 27:6 Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy.
The extreme hypocrisy of the kiss is amazing. The deep emotions and loyalty that is felt between people that kiss is so opposite the intentions of Judas. The deceit is reminiscent of the trickery that occurred back in another garden. That snake that betrayed man in the Garden of Eden is at work in Gethsemane and will continue until God makes him stop forever.
Isaiah 53:3 He was despised and rejected, a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way. He was despised, and we did not care.
It is easier to betray Jesus than we like to admit When we pretend to know and love the Lord and choose our own way we are betraying the closest friend that we could ever have. If your attitude toward Jesus is wrong, if you feel like He isn't treating you fair or if you fail to live up to your Sunday morning promises later in the week then you are betraying Jesus.
Judas proves that we can be busy in ministry and in small group and even have the best Bible teacher but it is not enough if it doesn't change your heart. Judas shows us that the desire for personal pleasure and financial gain can lead us to question Jesus and compromise our love for Him.
Why? By Michael Card - Watch the video
Why did it have to be a friend
Who chose to betray the Lord
Why did he use a kiss to show them
That's not what a kiss is for
Only a friend can betray a friend
A stranger has nothing to gain
And only a friend comes close enough
To ever cause so much pain