Friday, March 13, 2020

Satan Entered Judas Iscariot: The Meaning

My answer to this question on Quora:
When the Bible says in the New Testament that the devil entered into Judas during the past (sic) supper did it mean physical possession over him or just influencing him?

The opinion of Gary Hughes:

WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS

1. The Bible says that Satan entered into Judas a couple of days before the last supper. (Luke 22:3)
2. The Bible says that Jesus called Judas a devil months before the last supper. (John 6:70,71)
3. At the beginning of one narration of the last supper, the Bible says that the devil had already put it into the heart of Judas to hand Jesus over. (John 13:2)
4. Finally, the Bible says that Satan entered into Judas at the last supper. (John 13:27)

WHAT IT MEANS

All of these references to the devil and to Satan refer to unclean spirits.

Spirits are attitudes, or dispositions.

Unclean spirits are attitudes that foster evil behavior, preventing or disrupting well being.

Satan at Luke 22:3 and the devil at John 13:2 reflect different perspectives of the same event.

In both reports, the unclean spirit was spite, which manifested in the psyche of Judas after Jesus rebuked him for his criticism of Mary. (Mark 14:3-9; Matthew 26:6-13; John 12:3-8)

Spite is a diabolical spirit, a devil, that serves as an adversary, Satan, of God, who commands forgiveness of offenses, as against spite, which fosters a desire to return hurt for hurt.

Those who are lost spiritually are especially susceptible to falling under the sway of unclean spirits, and that was the case for Judas.

As it happened, the chief priests and the Pharisees had just commanded that the whereabouts of Jesus should be shown. (John 11:57) Judas saw in the command a way to fulfill his desire to hurt Jesus.

Accordingly, Judas went to the chief priests and made a covenant with them to hand Jesus over to them for money. (Mark 14:10,11; Matthew 26:14-16; Luke 22:3-6)

The making of the covenant was a trespass against Jesus, and by it, Judas became a traitor to him. (Luke 6:16) This development in the story led directly to the last supper.

The last supper was in progress when the last day began, the day when Jesus was scheduled to raise up Judas again. (John 6:39)

Jesus cast all unclean spirits out of Judas when he washed him clean. (John 13:1-15)

Then Jesus revealed to Judas alone that he (Jesus) had chosen him (Judas) to hand him over: “I speak not of you all. I know whom I have chosen. But that the scripture might be fulfilled, ‘He that eats bread with me has lifted up his heel against me.’” (John 13:18)

To eat bread with Jesus meant to cooperate with him.

The heel lifted up against Jesus was the covenant Judas made to hand him over.

Putting the two clauses together: He who cooperates with me now is the one who made the covenant to hand me over, after the devil put it into his heart.

When Jesus gave the sign of offering his bread to Judas, to indicate his choice of who should hand him over, the Bible says that Satan entered into Judas for the second time. (John 13:27)

Satan at John 13:27 was a spirit of opposition to those things of God which Jesus said must happen. (Mark 8:31-33; Matthew 16:21-23)

Now, Judas experienced Satan as a desire to renege on his obligation under the covenant he made.

Far from being possessed by Satan, Judas overcame Satan and glorified Jesus by accepting the work which Jesus gave him to do. (John 13:31a; Compare with John 17:4)

And by sending his servant to serve as guide for those who would take him, Jesus glorified God. (John 13:31b)


I say these things only in my own name.

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