But Jesus said to him, “Judas, would you betray the Son of Man with a kiss?” Luke 22:48
Have you ever watched a young child come home after a visit to the hospital? Have you ever paid attention to see what a little one does when they are brought home from vacation? Most will run around the house, jump on their bed, and grab one toy after another, greeting each of his playthings as if it were a long, lost friend, which of course, they are.
All of that is a child’s way of saying, “Home is a safe place for me.” Every child needs safe places, and every parent has, as part of their job description, the making of such safe places.
This is why an article last week from United Press International was so very shocking. It told of how five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor have been released from life imprisonment in Libya and allowed to return home. They had been charged and convicted of deliberately infecting 430 hospitalized children with HIV. Although the ex-condemned have said the problems were caused by poor hygienic conditions, the end result is 50 of those infected children have now died of AIDS.
No matter whose story you believe, the shocking truth is this: people who had been entrusted with the healing of children and providing a safe place for them failed to do so.
Their story reminds me so much of the shocking story of how Judas betrayed His Savior in the Garden of Gethsemane. Now, if you’re asking how I connected those two stories, I’d be glad to give an answer.
Think about it. On Maundy Thursday, Judas should have protected Jesus from His enemies. Judas should have been in the Garden praying with Jesus rather than selling Him out. Judas should have provided a safe place for His Lord. Instead, he chose to betray the Savior with a kiss. It was a kiss that took Jesus to trial and eventually to His cross.
In both stories, those who should have helped chose to hurt.
May the same never be said about us and our witness to the Savior. We, the ones for whom He lived and died, the ones who know of His great sacrifice, the ones who have been assured of eternal life by the Christ’s victorious resurrection, have been entrusted with the sharing of the Savior’s story.
Now, at the end of this devotion, it is my prayer that we may never do anything to let the Savior down. May we make the most of every opportunity to share the Savior’s story of salvation.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, You have given us forgiveness and freedom, salvation and adoption. By the Holy Spirit’s power, may we never do anything that will embarrass You. In Your Name, Amen.