Commentary on the Gospel of

Fr. Roland Chidiebere, CMF

Betrayal is always emotionally upsetting!
The upset is deeper when the bond between the betrayer and the betrayed is close. Judas Iscariot was present when Jesus said to his disciples “I chose you …” “I call you friends…” etc. These warm, friendly expressions show the kind of bond that our Lord kept creating and recreating with his disciples. The ultimate celebration of this bond came at the Last Super, when Jesus leaves his disciples with the legacy of “love one another as I have loved you!” Lo and behold it was from this same setting that Judas leaves to formally hand him over to the enemies who were bent on having him killed!

Jesus’ gut feeling did not deceive him: he was troubled in spirit and said ‘one among you shall betray me.’ More shocking still that he fed Judas with the bread directly before he (Judas) left! Dear friends, at the verge of betrayal it seems positive thinking and sensitivity towards the other flee the betrayer. Judas went ahead!

After the Judas’ experience amid his dramatic end, committing suicide, do we still betray each other? Yes we do. While some friends deliberately lie against those with whom they ate from the same dish; others poison the food and or the minds and thoughts of other people against those who used to be their friends!

While Judas Iscariot was immersed in the ocean of insensitivity, the Lord Jesus was full of emotions – but constructively managed the feelings. He shared what was going on in him; non-violently he challenged the betrayer by making him aware of the fact that he knew about his evil plot. And he went on to process the consequences of the betrayal in the garden of Gethsemane.  

Two things come up strongly: sensitivity to the fact that when one betrays, the other is deeply hurt. Stop betraying! Secondly, like our Lord Jesus Christ, acknowledge and process what is provoked in oneself and patiently allow the needed emotional healing rather than react violently when emotionally upset. 


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