• Retah McPherson

What if Judas steps into your life?

We have all experienced emotional pain at some stage in our lives. Our instinctive reaction is to protect ourselves against the pain by building a wall around our hearts and by vowing that no one will ever be able to hurt us in this way again. Our sense of survival kicks in and we will fight with all we’ve got not to have to go through the same pain or trauma again. But, have you also experienced that somehow, even though you have build a wall to protect your heart, the enemy’s arrows always find that hurting place and bulls eye! You experience the same hurt over and over again?  This is Satan’s way of keeping us in bondage to doubt, suspicion and unbelief. This unique ability of him to create confusion, discord and strife is after all why Satan was kicked out of heaven.

The problem with building walls of self protection around our hearts is that we merely protect the wound. These wounds can only be cleansed and healed by the blood of the Lamb. These unattended and mostly ignored wounds of rejection, low-self esteem and feelings of worthlessness are like a magnet for the enemy’s fiery arrows to keep us in bondage to hurt and pain. His plan is to keep us so busy protecting ourselves that we do not submit this hurt to Yeshua and therefore it never heals. This is like a never ending cycle where our whole life becomes consumed by saving and protecting ourselves no matter the cost to us and others. All we think of is survival. Satan wants to keeps us trapped in this fortress of hurt and lies but the truth is that only the blood of Yeshua, can break this cycle!

One of Satan’s most successful arrows is betrayal. With betrayal he uses our past uncared for and unresolved hurts, our insecurities and tendency towards self-protection as well as our lack of understanding as weapons to hurt one another. Satan watches us all the time waiting for the perfect opportunity to send his arrows of interference and distorted truth and lies to ruin our relationships. His opportunity usually comes when we are weak, tired, weary and feel emotionally vulnerable.

Such an arrow of betrayal has a two-fold effect on our relationships. Its purpose is to set two friends or two loved ones, even two parties, against one another. The arrow of betrayal splits and hits two people in very opposite ways. The first hits its target and that person is filled with judgement, indignation and rage. The arrow that hits them goes straight for their emotional bull’s eye – their unresolved feelings of rejection and low-self esteem. As a result all their painful emotions from the past kick in and flare up as if it is brand new. The effect of this arrow turns this person into a Judas and causes them to do whatever looks best for their own survival. Even if this means selling out or lashing out at your friends and loved ones with malicious words or actions.

The second part of the betrayal arrow hits the other person and this usually comes as a total surprise – like being stabbed in the back. This arrow also goes for the bull’s eye of past hurt where you were victimised, abused, emotionally blackmailed, rejected and hurt. The effect of this arrow is that you either want to fight or flee. Flee, to never ever see that person again, never ever to be hurt like this again. Or fight! Fight them with all that you’ve got – with all the accumulated and pent up anger and pain of your past hurt to spur you on. All of this anger is then channelled against your Judas. Now the stage is set, by two hurting people, trying to preserve themselves and Satan sits back and enjoys his choreographed show. 

Does this sound familiar? We have all been guilty of betraying someone whom we loved and trusted. For we also were once thoughtless and senseless, obstinate and disobedient, deluded and misled; [we too were once] slaves to all sorts of cravings and pleasures, wasting our days in malice and jealousy and envy, hateful (hated, detestable) and hating one another.  But when the goodness and loving-kindness of God our Saviour to man [as man] appeared, He saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but because of His own pity and mercy, by [the] cleansing [bath] of the new birth(regeneration)and renewing of the Holy Spirit, Which He poured out [so] richly upon us through Jesus Christ our Saviour.  [And He did it in order] that we might be justified by His grace (by His favour, wholly undeserved), [that we might be acknowledged and counted as conformed to the divine will in purpose, thought, and action], and that we might become heirs of eternal life according to [our]hope Tit 3: 3-7.

We need to understand that we cannot fight this battle on our own. We were not called to defend ourselves. We need to submit every part of our lives to Yeshua to be reborn, cleansed and regenerated through the blood of the Lamb, surrendering our past hurts to Him to be healed. But this is a process that takes time and diligent commitment. So what do you do when Judas steps into your life? Be encouraged the same happened to Yeshua! After working and walking side by side with Judas for three years, the enemy found his way into Judas’ soul – his unresolved pain and confusion or maybe it was his pride and judgement that turned him against Yeshua and caused him to become His betrayer. 

In John 13:2 the Word gives us a very powerful insight into the way the enemy establishes a foothold in people’s minds. So [it was]during supper, Satan having already put the thought of betraying Jesus in the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son (Joh 13:2). But why could this thought be planted in his heart and take root? In John 12:3-7 Mary brought a pound of spikenard and poured it on Yeshua’s feet. Judas thought her act of love was a waste of money and took the issue up with Him. He acts out of judgement and criticism and in this we see the attitude of his heart. That is what we are fighting –the attitude of our hearts. For this was my purpose in writing you, to test your attitude and see if you would stand the test, whether you are obedient and altogether agreeable [to following my orders] in everything 2Co 2:9. Maybe you also don’t agree with the way someone acts or do things – then before reacting you, we all, should consider the attitude of our hearts. We have a choice in how we are going to react, irrespective of the fact that we don’t agree or might get hurt. Keep and guard your heart with all vigilance and above all that you guard, for out of it flows the springs of life Prov 4:23.

Yeshua answered Judas to leave Mary alone and to allow her to continue. It was suppertime. The Devil by now had Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot, firmly in his grip, all set for the betrayal John 13:2. Because of the attitude of Judas’ heart and his reaction to it Satan’s stage was set. After supper Yeshua served communion to His disciples and then went to the garden of Gethsemane. Knowing that He was under mental and spiritual attack and being aware of what was too come -  He prayed and asked Peter, John and James to intercede, but off course they fell asleep. And being in an agony [of mind], He prayed [all the] more earnestly and intently, and His sweat became like great clots of blood dropping down upon the ground Luck 22:44.The word agony as used here refers to a great struggle, a great fight, a great exertion, or effort – anguish, pain, distress and conflict. The spiritual pressure that bore down on Yeshua’s soul was so overwhelming that the Word calls it “agony”. It involved Yeshua’s body, soul and spirit  - His greatest fight yet. He continued by praying earnestly on his own - a picture of a person who is pushed to the limit.

Were you ever in a situation that you felt you’ve been pushed to the limit? Are you perhaps now at a place where you experience intense agony? Do you feel as if the problems you are facing in your marriage, your family and kids, your ministry, job or finances is just too overwhelming? We know that Yeshua understands because He too experienced agony in Gethsemane. For because He Himself [in His humanity] has suffered in being tempted (tested and tried), He is able [immediately] to run to the cry of (assist, relieve) those who are being tempted and tested and tried (and who therefore are being exposed to suffering)Heb 2:18.

We are all being stretched beyond our capacity. In His faithfulness He answers us: “My Child – I give Supernatural assistance, it comes when YOUPRAY, don’t lean another’s prayers. I hear your voice and in the spirit I send assistance and you will feel the release – cry out to Me!!

Lord, My Yeshua, thank You for this word from You that has spoken so directly into my life today. It is true that we sometimes feel so alone, overwhelmed and trapped by situations, that we don’t even know what to do or were to turn. This is painful, because we are all confronted with our unhealed hurts. Lord, in these situations, some people fight, and others simply flee. Right now, at this moment, I am throwing the full weight of all my pain, burdens and cares onto You. Thank You for taking this burden away from me and for filling me a fresh with all the strength that I need to press through this time and season! How I love you Yeshua. Let’s all take a moment and make sure that the condition of our hearts is pure. The challenge remains ours, it doesn’t matter if you are right or wrong, your heart and the attitude of your heart need to be pure. Keep on forgiving, as many times as it takes, 70 x 70. Keep on bringing Kingdom to your painful situations or relationships. Keep on being the least and keep on loving – That is the character of Yeshua in our lives.

Now may the Lord of peace Himself grant you His peace(the peace of His kingdom) at all times and in all ways [under all circumstances and conditions, whatever comes]. The Lord [be] with you all 2Th3:16. 

Tinus is doing so well, the doctor took some of his upper leg’s skin, to implant where his arm was hurt. So with 11 year old wisdom Josh asked “Dad, are you going to have some leg hair growing out of your arm now?” We had a good laugh to which Josh responded ”hey, it is a valid question, why are you laughing at me?”

And indeed it is - so we will wait and see. That is life – full of surprises! Enjoy life, celebrate life – because life is beautiful.

Retah and family

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