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Easter message: The Judas spirit

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Thur April 17, 2014

by Bishop Sonny E. Williams – Presiding Bishop – Pentecostal Assemblies of the West Indies St Vincent and the Grenadines District.

Judas’ outward sin was the betrayal of his friend when he sold Jesus out to his enemy. But the thinking and attitude that motivated this treacherous action was the root of the problem. Judas may have thought that he had forsaken his business and sacrificed opportunities to advance himself over the last three years by following Jesus daily. He may have gotten the impression from Jesus’ teaching and agenda that his personal dreams weren’t going to be fulfilled. He may have also thought that following Jesus would advance his position, power and prestige, but this to him, had proven wrong.{{more}}

Consequently, Judas probably built up in his own mind a case for feeling justified in taking the action he did. It appeared to him as if Jesus had misled him and would not fulfill His word to them. Hence he could have reasoned that he would make at least 30 pieces of silver profit for service rendered for the past three years. In his thought, he deserved something for the years of sacrifice and service he had given to Jesus.

Satan’s firsts step in developing the Judas Spirit in people is to convince them that the leadership they have been serving is not living up to the promises made to them. Such thinking allows a sense of justification for betraying friendship and selling out to the enemy for personal gain. They convince themselves that the leadership and others are neither understanding nor beneficial.

The Judas Spirit begins in the tiny weed seed of feeling that we must be rewarded immediately for every service rendered and given recognition or a high position for time and money spent. It starts with the attitude that I deserve better for services rendered.

Selfishness is the root of this Judas type of attitude and action. Self centredness is what nourishes this spirit. To effectively deal with this mentality, we must lay the axe of truth at the root of this tree rather than waste time merely pruning the branches. Maligning others for position and promotion, disloyal acts, objectification and exploitation of others, dishonesty and malicious sowing of discord are among other branches of this tree. These sinful manifestations are the blades growing above the ground. The Judas Spirit is the root system underground. We may cut away the blade of grass, but they will grow back again and again until the underlining root system is destroyed.

Peter faced circumstances similar to those of Judas. He left his fishing business and his family to follow Jesus. When Jesus was arrested, he also became discouraged and disillusioned, even to the extent of denying his leader and Lord. Yet Peter repented when he realised he had spoken immaturely and had acted wrongly towards Jesus. Judas’ story ends in the awful disgrace of suicide. Hounded by guilt and unable to live with the consequences of his action, he chose this rather lonely and unfortunate death.

We too may have done foolish things when under pressure, fear and confusion, especially when we see all our hopes and dreams falling apart around us. When this happens, do we follow the example of Peter or Judas? Like Peter, we must admit wrong doing and like prodigal son in Jesus’ parable, turn away from this attitude and accept a servant’s attitude.

The Pentecostal Assemblies of the West Indies, St Vincent and the Grenadines District encourages all to careful consideration of this message and wishes you a blessed Easter season.

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