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§ 267. The Words of Christ with and concerning his Betrayer. (John, xiii., 11, 21, seq.)

To the Apostles he said, in the sense above defined, “Ye are clean;” but, as this could not be applied to Judas, he added, “yet not all.” Intimations of this kind he threw out more and more frequently, partly, as he himself said (v. 19), to prepare them for the act of treachery, that it might not take them unawares, and lead them to infer that He, too, had been deceived; and partly, perhaps, in order to rouse, if possible, the conscience of Judas himself. But his foresight of the awful deed—that one who had been a special object of his love should disarm him and become a tool of his enemies—and of the conflict with depravity that he must go through, even up to his last hour, moved him most deeply; and he now spoke more plainly, “Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me.”

The disciples, not yet able to understand him, looked upon each other, surprised and confounded. All were anxious to know whom he alluded to; but Peter alone, as usual, gave expression to the wish. Even he did not venture to ask aloud, but beckoned to John, who was leaning upon the Saviour’s breast, as they surrounded the table, that he should put the question. In answer to John, Christ said, in a low 388tone, that it was he whose turn it just then was to receive from his hands the morsel of the lamb dipped in the sauce. And this was Judas.717717   According to Matthew, Judas also asked, “Is it I?” and Jesus answered in the affirmative. This incident would come in most naturally at this point. Judas, noticing the alarmed countenances of the disciples, seeing Peter whisper to John, John to Jesus, and Jesus reply, felt that he was discovered, and was led to ask the question directly. This must certainly have been done in an under tone, if Judas could have had a position near enough.

This occurrence could not fail either to awaken the slumbering conscience of Judas, or to make him anxious to leave such a fellowship and take the last step of his crime. When he arose, Christ said to him, “That thou doest (hast resolved to do), do quickly.” Not implying a command to commit the deed, but rather calculated to move his conscience, had it been still susceptible of impression. But he had decided upon the act: so far as his intentions could go, it was as good as done; and therefore Christ asked him to hasten the crisis.718718   An allusion to the severer struggles that yet awaited Christ: not expressly mentioned by John, but related by the other Evangelists.

The departure of Judas to inform the Sanhedrim how they might most readily seize the person of Jesus, decided his death; and, in view of it, he said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified (in reference to the sacrifice of his earthly life, because the ideal of holiness is realized in Him under the last struggles, because human nature attains therein its highest moral perfection), and God is glorified in him (as the moral glorifying of human nature is the perfect glorifying of God in it; the perfect manifestation of God in his holiness and love). If God be glorified in him, God shall also glorify him in himself719719   The expressions, ἐν αὐτῶ and ἐν ἑαυτῷ (John, xiii., 32) obviously correspond to each other. As the first betokens the glorifying of God in Jesus, as the Son of Man, so the second denotes the glorifying of the Son of Man in God, by his being raised up unto God in heaven. (shall raise him to Himself, and glorify him), and shall straightway glorify him.”720720   We presuppose that Jesus wished Judas to depart before he should institute the Lord’s Supper. As the words in verses 31, 32 were directly connected with the departure of the betrayer, they too must have been uttered before the institution.


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