“What are you willing to give me...?” (Matthew 26:15a); "As keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it" (John 12:6b).
This is a tragic question. Imagine, Judas is asking the chief priests how much they are willing to give him -- to betray his Lord! Judas, who once loved and believed in Jesus, is now ready to commit the greatest crime on earth, for only thirty pieces of silver. The weeds in Judas' garden were greed, lack of insight and ingratitude of the highest order. Even being with Jesus who daily sacrificed Himself for others did not convince Judas of his own self-serving ways. It must have gnawed at the very vitals of Judas that Jesus did not consider money the most vital possession in life. On many occasions Jesus warned about the love of money, but Judas' heart was enlarged with covetousness.
It's incredible to us that Judas would sell out the very One who gave him physical and spiritual life. Here was a man who was welcomed, along with Jesus and the other eleven disciples, everywhere they went. How could he not be content? But it isn't the lack of money but the love of money that has caused grievous desertion from principles and practices. His Master became a commodity to be sold to the most malicious bidders. For the price of a slave, Judas sold the Master. His itching palm and heart festered into boldness as he paid a tithe to the devil himself for "then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand [Jesus] over" (Matthew 26:16). How unthinkable, we think!
Yet who are we to judge Judas, for we serve self daily. How many times a day do we ask, "What are you willing to give me...?" We too have our dividing line when we choose either the right or the wrong action that will determine another's and our own future. Just as with Judas, we cannot step back over the line, so it is well to consider the consequences.
Give me...! There was the fatal fracture in the heart of Judas. That was what the prodigal son said, "Father, give me..." Such an attitude betrayed the Son of God, and it is still doing so. God forgive us for our selfishness!