Jesus called Judas, the Son of Perdition, could Judas have repented and been accepted by The Lord? In other words can a disloyal person ever repent?
When a person gets involved with betrayal is there any hope for him?
We believe that not every traitor is deeply rebellious. Some are innocent and some are not. Let us point out to you that it was not only Judas who deserted Christ in his last hours. Every single disciple, except John the beloved disowned Christ when it mattered most. There were a few people standing at the cross in the heat of the crisis: John the beloved, Mary the mother of Jesus, and Mary Magdalene. The other disciples were nowhere to be found.
Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother...
John 19:25, 26
Peter cursed and denied ever having had anything to do with Christ. In spite of this, the fate of Peter was very different from the fate of Judas. We believe that Peter’s desertion was not of the heart, but it was an emotional and irrational action that may be expected of most people in his circumstance.
What about Judas? Didn’t he repent? The Bible says that he went back to the High Priest saying that he had betrayed innocent blood.
And he cast down the pieces of silver… and went and hanged himself.
He did admit that he had done something wrong. Is this not repentance? The answer is no, this is not repentance. We have often wondered why Judas is not considered as someone who genuinely repented. The answer is simple. Judas admitted that he was wrong, but he did not retrace his steps.
To repent means to turn around, and to change. Judas never changed. He did not turn around or retrace his steps. He just admitted that he was wrong, jumped out of the boat “and hung himself! He did not want to see anybody or face anyone. He just excused himself.
He could not bear to look at the faces of the other disciples and admit to them that he was wrong. We have seen pastors admit one or two mistakes that they have made. But that did not amount to repentance. Remember what we said earlier: admission of sins is not the same as repenting. Many people who come up with apologies have the “what did they say I should say” attitude.
She Asked, “What Did They Say I Should Say?”
There was once a disagreement between a husband and a wife. The problem got so bad that the families had to intervene. After much discussion, it was discovered that the wife was at fault. The council of elders asked the lady to apologize to the family and especially to her husband.
She grudgingly agreed and went from elder to elder saying to them, “I’m sorry for what I did.” When she got to her husband, with a bored look on her face, she turned around to ask the others, “What did they say I should say to him?”
Dear reader, by asking this question she was confirming that she indeed had not repented. She was being forced to admit her mistakes. That is why she had to ask, “What did they say I should say?” Never forget that true repentance is different from admitting one’s sins.
If a rebellious separatist comes back claiming he has repented from his sins use the following seven points to help to differentiate between a forced admission of wrongdoing and true godly repentance.
1. First of all, admit to yourself and to God that you have been a rebel.
2. Ask God for his mercy and forgiveness.
3. Confess your rebellion to those against whom you rebelled.
4. Tell your rebel group that you have realized that you were a rebel. Explain to them your decision to repent.
5. Go to the church from which you rebelled and confess your sins publicly.
6. Confess to any other parties that were involved during the time of your rebellion.
7. Those from whom you rebelled will forgive you for your rebellion and release you in God's blessings