How do we deal with them?
Maybe it comes down to whether or not we will ourselves to believe that God will come through for us.
Easter is upon us. The time when we remember and celebrate that Jesus fulfilled His Father’s dearest wish and gave up His life to save us. Yes, He rose again three days later, but first, He bore our sins, diseases and sufferings upon his own shoulders. The literal weight of the world—for all eras—descending upon Him at once.
Disappointment. Failure. Betrayal.
Two men betrayed Jesus. Two men who were as close to Him as brothers. Every day they walked with Him and listened to Him as He taught the crowds the Words of Wisdom. One would think that they, of all people, would never be disappointed.
But when the time came, Judas and Peter both betrayed their Friend. Loyalty only went as far as their own self-interest. Judas betrayed Him because Jesus did not pick up a literal sword and go after the oppressing government. Judas was a revolutionary and wanted a leader to fight for freedom in the here and now. And then, when nothing turned out like he planned, rather than face the consequences, Judas killed himself.
Peter had no specific agenda except fear. He betrayed Jesus because He was accused of being with Jesus and if he admitted to it, he was afraid they would kill him. So, he sacrificed his Friend, Jesus, to save his own skin. After a cock crowed (as Jesus had predicted) and Jesus was brought out, how His look pierced through Peter’s heart. We know it, because we read how he wept in remorse.
Both men betrayed Jesus, but their heart issues set them apart from each other. Judas ran from facing it. Peter wrestled with his repentance. After His Resurrection, Jesus confronted Peter with his betrayal, restored him to friendship and gave him a commission to fulfill. Peter was then ready to serve fully. I wonder, if Judas had worked through what happened, repented in his sorrow, would Jesus have restored him to friendship as well? I believe He would have done so.
It made me look at my heart. I want restoration when I am the betrayer. But what if I am the betrayed? How do I restore others who might betray me? What if the one who betrayed does not come to me in repentance, will I forgive him or her?
“Let not mercy and truth forsake you; Bind them around your neck, Write them on the tablet of you heart, And so find favor and high esteem in the sight of God and man” (Proverbs 3:3,4). NKJV