INVITED // DECEMBER 2, 2022
"Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me."
Judas was one of the twelve apostles Jesus had personally chosen, who'd been with him through his public ministry and was entrusted with the moneybag. Jesus knew Judas would betray him, yet he invited Judas to the table anyway. Not only was Judas invited, but he stayed long enough for communion, representing Jesus' love and forgiveness. It's sad: he kissed the door of heaven, but never went in. He tasted the bread of heaven, but never went in.
Jesus was no stranger to rejection. Many of his disciples abandoned him, Judas betrayed him, and Peter denied him. He'd known what Judas would do, yet chose him anyway. In spite of Judas’ greed, blind ambition and betrayal, Jesus still included him. He even called him “friend.” Jesus doesn't place conditions on his love or reject people who fail to meet certain standards. He simply cares for us -- as we are. So, why did Jesus bring it up at all during the last supper? Bringing it up wouldn't stop it. He looked like a disciple, but he was working for Jesus' enemies. Somebody had made it to the table who looks like he's on the same page, but he's actually being paid by and used by those working against us. Looks like us, but ain't us. So why tell them? The family needed to know. Judas showed up, but he never went in.
If Judas was invited, what about you? You can't earn Jesus' love and friendship. He takes the initiative, reaches out and draws you into relationship. In Jesus, you have a friend who sticks closer than a brother, who stands at the door and knocks, waiting to be let in. Even if you betray him. You're not shut out from the kingdom of heaven. He's waiting to welcome you in. If Judas had returned to Jesus, asking for mercy, it would have been one of the most beautiful stories ever. What will your story be?