We probably haven’t asked ourselves this question yet. But if we deliberately do it, certainly we would say that Jesus is worth more to us than everything else in life. It is important that this really is so and that we can say it with full conviction – for by doing so, we fulfill the commandment that Jesus called the greatest one:
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37).
Jesus should be more important to us than everything else in this world. When the disciples started following Jesus, each one of them came to realize this fully. However, the Bible speaks about Judas Iscariot’s relationship with Jesus changing over time. He became so angry about some things that he even confronted Jesus about them (John 12:1-8). In the end, he was prepared to comply with the command of the priests and Pharisees (John 11:57) to betray Jesus’ whereabouts. He did not want to perform this service for free for them, so he went to them and asked: “What are you willing to give me if I deliver Him to you?” They agreed on 30 pieces of silver, and Judas went to work. Thirty pieces of silver was the monthly salary of a daily laborer. Jesus was not worth more than that to him.
With outrage, we ask ourselves today: “Judas, what did you do? Betray the Lord? For the monthly salary of a simple laborer? Why!?” The Bible does not give us more information about this, whether his motives were of a theological or political nature. Perhaps he had other expectations or was disappointed by the disciples or even by Jesus Himself. We do not know.
But what does this incident mean for us? Should we think about how much Jesus is worth to us today? Is it possible that our relationship to Him has changed over time? Where is our “pain threshold” when it comes to professing Jesus? Is the threshold to give into temptation at a lower point than when we first began to follow Him? How is our love to the world? Certainly there are more questions we could ask. Perhaps it is a good idea to ask Jesus these questions ourselves in prayer and to allow Him to show us the answer.