(2 Chronicles 1-3, John 12:1-19)
But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (he who was about to betray him), said, “Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” He said this, not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief, and having charge of the moneybag he used to help himself to what was put into it. (John 12:4-6)
When we think about Judas, the infamous betrayer of Jesus, we consider that final action. He got up from the Passover meal and went to the Jewish authorities to make a deal: 30 pieces of silver in exchange for Jesus. Maybe we think this was out of a moment of weakness, just a brief darkening of his thinking.
Judas betrayed Jesus long before this final “falling away.” He accused Mary of wastefulness when she poured out her perfume. He stole money from the offering given to Jesus and the other disciples. This was not a moment of weakness. This was a rebellious heart that cloaked itself in religion.
The “great falling away” is not a sudden shift of allegiance, rather it’s that place in us that was never surrendered. It’s full-grown rebellion, unchecked by our conscience, and even covered by our false religion. We offer prayers while shunning the grace provided by God to live free from sin. This is the great betrayal. Any area in us that will not bow to the express will of God has already betrayed Jesus. Repent of your sin. Turn back! Today is still the day of salvation.