Betrayal is very, very painful. Sometimes it seems like we just can’t let it go. It haunts us. Other days, not so much. This is common for many of us. We can’t get over it somehow.
Jesus knew the pain of betrayal firsthand. The worst, most treacherous betrayal of all time was Judas’s betrayal of Jesus for thirty pieces of silver. Our mission, given to us by Jesus, is to forgive and love. That is the way of Jesus.
Despite the pain, there is a way we can overcome betrayal. The power comes directly from God and the strength of forgiveness.
Even my own familiar friend in whom I trusted, who ate my bread, has lifted up his heel against me
(Psalm 41:9,; cf. John 13:18).
Jesus did not become vindictive, bitter, or angry. Just the opposite. After receiving the traitor’s kiss, Jesus addressed Judas as “friend”.
Jesus shows us how. Jesus chose Judas to be an apostle. Jesus loved him to the end, even though the devil entered his heart.
Betrayal carries acute feelings for its victims. Jesus brings healing and binds the wounds of our hearts.
- Psalm 41:9 (NASB) —Even my close friend in whom I trusted, Who ate my bread, Has lifted up his heel against me.
- Judges 16:18 — When Delilah saw that he had told her all that was in his heart, she sent and called the Masters of the Philistines, saying, “Come up once more, for he has told me all that is in his heart.” Then the Masters of the Philistines came up to her and brought the money in their hands.
- 1 Samuel 18:17 — Then Saul said to David, “Here is my older daughter Merab; I will give her to you as a wife, only be a valiant man for me and fight the Master’s battles.” For Saul thought, “My hand shall not be against him, but let the hand of the Philistines be against him.”
- 2 Samuel 19:26–27 — So he answered, “O my Master, the king, my servant deceived me; for your servant said, ‘I will saddle a donkey for myself that I may ride on it and go with the king,’ because your servant is lame. Moreover, he has slandered your servant to my Master the king; but my Master the king is like the angel of God, therefore do what is good in your sight.
- Psalm 55:12–14 — For it is not an enemy who reproaches me, Then I could bear it; Nor is it one who hates me who has exalted himself against me, Then I could hide myself from him. But it is you, a man my equal, My companion and my familiar friend; We who had sweet fellowship together Walked in the house of God in the throng.
- Jeremiah 12:6 — “For even your brothers and the household of your father, Even they have dealt treacherously with you, Even they have cried aloud after you. Do not believe them, although they may say nice things to you.”
- Lamentations 1:2 — She weeps bitterly in the night And her tears are on her cheeks; She has none to comfort her Among all her lovers. All her friends have dealt treacherously with her; They have become her enemies.
- Lamentations 1:19 — “I called to my lovers, but they deceived me; My priests and my elders perished in the city While they sought food to restore their strength themselves.”