Courageous Faith

The Gospel of Matthew begins the account of Jesus’ arrest like this:

“While He was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, arrived. With him was a large crowd armed with swords and clubs, sent from the chief priests and the elders of the people. Now the betrayer had arranged a signal with them: ‘The one I kiss is the man; arrest Him.’ Going at once to Jesus, Judas said, ‘Greetings, Rabbi!’ and kissed Him” (Matthew 20:47-49).

Judas, what a weasel! He says “Greetings Rabbi,” pretending like he doesn’t know what is about to happen. He’s even arranged a “secret” sign. Why not man up, look Jesus in the eye and say, “I’ve betrayed you, and I came to point you out to this mob so they can arrest you.”

The Gospel of John continues:

“Jesus, knowing all that was going to happen to Him, went out and asked them, ‘Who is it you want?’ ‘Jesus of Nazareth,’ they replied. ‘I am He,’ Jesus said. When Jesus said, ‘I am He’, they drew back and fell to the ground. Again, He asked them, ‘Who is it you want?’ And they said, ’Jesus of Nazareth’. ‘I told you that I am He,’ Jesus answered” (John 18:4-8).

No running, no hiding, no pretending, even though He could see the cross in the close distance, Jesus went out to face them. He could have delivered Himself, but He had come to deliver them. “I am He;” the power of those words took them off their feet. They found themselves face to face with the “I Am!,” the “I am He,” your Deliverer. “I am He, your Savior. I am He, your Creator. I am He, your Provider. I am He, your Healer. And, Judas, I am He who knows your heart.”

Jeremiah 17:10, says, “I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve.” We can’t hide what’s in our heart from God. When He looks into our heart, what does He find? Does He find a man who pretends to follow Jesus in church or pretends not to at work? Does He find a secret faith or a courageous faith?



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