Mark – God is On Our Side!
The phrase “kiss of death”, used as a noun means “an act or relationship that has fatal or disastrous consequences”. The dictionary tells us the origin; “An action or relationship that is ultimately ruinous. For example, Some regard a royal divorce as a kiss of death to the monarchy. This term alludes to the betrayal of Jesus by Judas Iscariot, who kissed him as a way of identifying him to the soldiers who came to arrest him (Matthew 26: 47–49, Mark 14: 43-45). It dates only from about 1940 but was previously called a Judas kiss.”
We, as believers and followers of Jesus Christ, know that the kiss meant for death by Judas only put into motion what God had planned from the beginning of time. This plan would save us from death.
The Judas Kiss fatally ruined the relationship between Jesus and himself. Judas hung himself. Judas was not repentant, he was only remorseful. Judas never understood Jesus and His mission.
Mark 14, NLT
Jesus Is Betrayed and Arrested
43 And immediately, even as Jesus said this, Judas, one of the twelve disciples, arrived with a crowd of men armed with swords and clubs. They had been sent by the leading priests, the teachers of religious law, and the elders. 44 The traitor, Judas, had given them a prearranged signal: “You will know which one to arrest when I greet him with a kiss. Then you can take him away under guard.” 45 As soon as they arrived, Judas walked up to Jesus. “Rabbi!” he exclaimed, and gave him the kiss.
46 Then the others grabbed Jesus and arrested him. 47 But one of the men with Jesus pulled out his sword and struck the high priest’s slave, slashing off his ear.
48 Jesus asked them, “Am I some dangerous revolutionary, that you come with swords and clubs to arrest me? 49 Why didn’t you arrest me in the Temple? I was there among you teaching every day. But these things are happening to fulfill what the Scriptures say about me.”
50 Then all his disciples deserted him and ran away. 51 One young man following behind was clothed only in a long linen shirt. When the mob tried to grab him, 52 he slipped out of his shirt and ran away naked.
The fact that Judas brought such a large group of armed men is evidence that neither he nor the religious leaders really understood Jesus. They thought that Jesus would try to escape, or that His followers would put up a fight, or that perhaps He might do a miracle. Our Lord’s words in Mark 14:49 were proof that He was in control, for they could have arrested Him many times earlier, except that His hour had not yet come.
Peter did a foolish thing by attacking Malchus (John 18:10), for we do not fight spiritual battles with physical weapons (2 Cor. 10:3–5). He used the wrong weapon, at the wrong time, for the wrong purpose, with the wrong motive. Had Jesus not healed Malchus, Peter would have been arrested as well, and there might have been four crosses on Calvary.
At this point, the disciples forsook Jesus and fled, and so did an unknown young man who came into the Garden and witnessed the arrest. Was this John Mark? We do not know, but since the gospel of Mark is the only one of the four gospels that records this event, the author could well have been writing about himself.
If the Upper Room was in the home of John Mark, then perhaps Judas led the soldiers there first. John Mark may have hastily put on an outer garment and followed the mob to the Garden. The soldiers may have even tried to arrest him, so he fled. The disciples were scattered and the Servant was now alone, “and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me” (John 16:32).
This kiss, meant for death, actually begins the plan of God to give us life eternal through the sacrifice of His One and Only Son, Jesus Christ.
HOLY PAUSE…think about what God has done all because of His love for you. Accept Jesus as Savior and as Lord of all of life here as we prepare for life eternal with Him. Be more than remorseful, be repentant.
Dear Heavenly Father,
You were in control of the situation at all times. You are God and we are not. You are still working in us and through us as we confess our sins to You. You forgive us. You watch over us. You sacrificed your Son so that our relationship with You can be restored. Thank you for your love. Thank you for being with us. Thank you for caring enough to save us and transform us daily to be all you intended for us to be.
In Jesus Name, Amen