Tuesday, April 30, 2019

What Must I Do?

by Michael C. Garrett

the first great and second commandments

We read in the “gospel” accounts on multiple occasions that Jesus Christ had the ability to perceive the thoughts of people that were around Him. It’s possible that His keen sense of observation and powerful understanding of human nature contributed to His discernment abilities. Maybe a persons body language, the way they stand, or how they hold their head, or the look in the eyes, or the muscles around the eyes. Maybe the sound of their voice, or their choice of words. And He obviously possessed the ability to perceive their thoughts and attitudes, because God’s Holy Spirit flowed through every fiber and vein of His heart, mind, and soul. And He was literally the human embodiment, manifestation of the great Almighty Creator God! So if anyone can understand what makes a human tick, it would be Jesus Christ – He’s the One that created us. One gets the sense that the group of individuals which Jesus Christ most often used His powers of perception, were the members of what I like to call – the temple elite. The Pharisees, the Sadducees and the student’s of the law, and they are often called, “the lawyers.” It seems to me that Jesus Christ took a certain bit of pleasure in counter-acting their attempts to test Him and to entangle Him in His Words. At the conclusion of these various events the temple elite would always slink away with their intellectual tails dragging and tucked between their legs. They were simply no match for the Master.

If you would, turn to Matthew 22 – and there are three different accounts here. I’ll try and go through them really quickly. Starting with verse 15 – “Then the Pharisees went and plotted how they might entangle Him in His talk.” And they went to Him and they had some false compliments, saying, ‘We know that You’re a man from God, You regard the person of men,’ in verse 16. And then in verse 17 they start setting up their little attempted trap.

“’Tell us, therefore, what do You think? It is lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?’” – again, the question is if Jesus says ‘no,’ then they will go running to the Roman authorities and says, ‘Look what this scoundrel is doing! Arrest Him, kill Him!’ Verse 18 – “But Jesus perceived their wickedness,” and He very adeptly came up with this statement, verse 19 – “’Show Me the tax money.’ So they brought Him a denarius. 20) And He said to them, ‘Whose image and inscription is this?’ 21) They said to Him, ‘Caesar’s.’ [either Augustus or Tiberius]. …” And then He just very calmly said, “…’Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.’” And then we read, verse 22 – “When they heard these words, they marveled, …” – they were probably confused, and “…left Him and went their way.” They knew, “O’ no, we better not go here.”

Well, there’s another account, very next verse, verse 23 – “The same day the Sadducees, …” – so I guess it was their turn. And they like to say that there is no resurrection. And that was the main difference between the Pharisees and Sadducees. So they came up with their little attempted trick, saying, verse 24 – “’[Master], Moses said that if a man dies, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife and raise up offspring for his brother.” – and that was from the writings of Moses, back in the Book of Deuteronomy. Verse 25 – “Now there were with us seven brothers. The first died after he had married, and having no offspring, left his wife to his brother. 26) Likewise the second also, the third, even to the seventh. 27) Last of all the woman died also.’” So, here’s the question they say, verse 28 – “’Therefore in the resurrection, whose wife of the seven will she be? For they all had [been married to her].’” And so, they’re trying to trick Him up, and Jesus, very adeptly, verse 29 – “Jesus answered and said to them, ‘You are mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God.’” – which must have been a bit of a smack in the face to those self-righteous guys! Verse 30 – “’For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels of God in Heaven. 31) But concerning the resurrection of the dead, …’” – again, which they did not believe in, “…’have you not read what was spoken to you by God, saying, 32) ‘I AM the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.’ 33) And when the multitudes heard this, they were astonished at His teaching.” – they were overwhelmed by His doctrine. And I’m sure they disappeared into the shadows. Verse 34 – “But when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, …” – they went, ‘Alright! We’re gonna have another go at Him!’ “…they gathered together. 35) Then one of them, a lawyer [a student of the law], asked Him a question, testing Him, …” – trying to catch Him in a mistake. Verse 36 – “’[Master], which is the great commandment in the law?’” And I’m sure they were prepared to - if He said one thing, to argue the other. But once again He out-foxed them. Verse 37 – “Jesus said to him, ‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38) This is the first and great commandment. 39) And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40) On these two commandments [on these two principles] hang all the Law and the Prophets.’” – so once again, a few more verses go by and verse 46 – “And no one was able to answer Him a word, nor from that day on did anyone dare question Him anymore.” They knew that every time they got into these little debates that He always managed to get on top and to make them look rather foolish.

Now Jesus did not engage in these discussion’s just for the purpose of ‘shutting the mouths,’ as Paul said, of those self-righteous hypocrites. He also used these moments to teach powerful religious truths. Back in Matthew 19 we read about a young man – and I don’t think that this man was trying to be deceivious. He came up to Jesus and he said, verse 16 – “…’Good [Master], what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?’” And Jesus responded very simply, verse 17 – “…’if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.’” Well in Matthew 22, Jesus identified those two divine principles or commandments in response to the question, ‘Master, what’s the great commandment?’ And He talked about loving God with all your heart, mind, and soul. And loving your fellow human being, just as you would yourself. And He dramatically stated, ‘On these two commandments hang all of the Law and the Prophets.’ And just for the official record, please be aware that He didn’t say anything about keeping customs, or traditions, or getting off into little side issues. He was focused on the big issue. I remember Mr. Herbert Armstrong, I think the wisest thing I ever heard him say is, ‘Stick to the trunk of the tree.’ That’s what Mr. HWA would tell you! That’s what he told us.

Well, this discussion about loving God and loving your neighbor begs the question – how do you love God!? And, how do you love your neighbor!? What do you do, how do you do it!?

the first four commandments

Well biblically speaking a good place to start – good old fashion religion here – the ten commandments. And you can read about those in Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5. We have often discussed within the Church for decades that the first four commandments help define how we love and show honor and respect unto God.

1) You shall have no other gods before the true God.

2) You shall not make any graven image, or you shall not bow down yourself or serve these false gods.

Now, those are sort of rather related, it’s simply put – You will not follow and serve false teachers, false ministers, which promote the false gods and false religions. The first two commandments clearly state that there should be NOTHING in our lives which is more important to us than loving, obeying, and serving Almighty God, and that includes parents, mates, children, brother’s, sister’s, family, friends, nation, home, job, career, political party or affiliation – NOTHING – GOD IS TO BE NUMBER ONE!

3) You shall not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain.

Now, at its most basic level it’s pretty easy to understand. You will not disrespectfully use the name of God in your speech. In a profane and demeaning way. And unfortunately in our society today you can’t go anywhere. You can’t watch television, movies, you can’t go out and walk, can’t go to a ballgame, without hearing people over and over defaming and profaning the name of God. And, for some reason, God says don’t do it, so they get pumped up and wanna do it! And it adds absolutely nothing to their conversation. It doesn’t give you any insight into what they’re trying to tell you. They just blurt it out! Well, at a deeper level, this commandment I think also means – when it says, ‘you shall not take …’ The word “take” there, if you go back and study some of the Hebrew, you’ll find out that it means to wear something as an identifying sign. Like a badge. So, what God is also saying – ‘You will not go around declaring yourself to be of God and to be of Christ, when in truth you’re not.’ And we have a whole lot of people in this world that love to go around claiming that they’re Christian. That their religion is Christian. When in fact what they teach does not agree with the Word of God. They’re falsely claiming to be followers of God. And God finds that very upsetting! Because it causes a whole lot of problems with people, that get confused.

4) Well, number four is why we’re here today. ‘Remember the Sabbath day [and that means the seventh day; not the first day].’ And by extension it means obeying and keeping the annual Sabbath’s or annual Holy Days.

And, we are well versed in that. And early on in our church experience we found out about this, and we had to decide. Now, some of you might have had the fortune to grow up in a family where those decision’s had already been made by parent’s or grandparent’s, and that’s wonderful. I wish more of us could have gone down that route. But as we grow up we have to decide, “Am I going to follow the traditions of my fellow human beings. Am I going to be in the same church that mom and dad were, grandma and grandpa? Or am I going to honestly look at the Word of God, and decide that I am going to do what God says I should do!?” I’m not going to listen to my religious mentor – whatever title he goes by. I’m going to go straight to the Word of God and have Him teach me His truth. And there’s simply no denying it! You know, the word Sunday never appears in the Bible. And yet, the word Sabbath or the seventh day occurs I think about 180 times! Don’t quote me on that, but it’s a huge number. There’s no doubt what the Bible says. And the Bible says nothing has changed. And yet, human beings have come up with the idea, “Well, yeah, we know better than God!” Well, respectfully, no you don’t!

the last six commandments

Well, the next six commandments begin to delineate and outline our duties and responsibilities to our fellow human beings.

5) ‘Honor thy father and thy mother.’ And it goes on to add that your days may be long upon the earth. There’s a promise added with the idea of honoring your father and mother. God says that you will also help ensure that you will have a long and productive life. We’re told that that’s the first commandment which carries a specific promise. And by extension, is a reminder that we are to honor our Heavenly Father, and our spiritual Mother – which Paul described as the Church. And I must say that when you go about stirring up problems and issues, and rumors, and stories about people, you are not honoring the Church. And there by you are not honoring what God wants you to do. And that’s just something I wish people would take a little more seriously. Individuals are not appointed to be problem makers in their congregations. We’re supposed to come together, not split each other apart. And unfortunately, the Church of God has had a long history of people wanting to split people apart, and pit people against people, and ideas against ideas. It’s not healthy, it’s not of God. And it always ends up in a lot of issues which is not good.

6) ‘Thou shalt not kill.’ Or, as you get the whole proper translation, ‘Thou shall do no murder.’ And I cannot read or think of this verse without grieving. I’ve mentioned this before, but I just think this is a major issue when God looks down upon this country, and its society. I, and many of us, grieve for the 60,069,971,000 children aborted since Roe Vs. Wade in 1973! They were MURDERED! Now, that was 46 years ago! Consider the number of children that never had the opportunity to exist because their potential parents never had a chance to be born, grow up, and have children, and families of their own! We are possibly looking at the number 100 MILLION Americans who are missing from our ranks, because they were never allowed to be born and their children were never allowed to be born. A hundred million people! The pro-choice movement – as they like to call themselves – is badly mislabeled in my opinion. If people who are for life are called pro-life, then I think people who are for abortion should be labeled pro-death. Let’s just be honest here. That’s what their for – they want to see babies murdered. And I know that’s not a nice way to put it, and it’s not really politically correct, not flowery. But it’s the truth! They’re wanting to kill people who are simply and totally and completely innocent.

Our nation is facing a major financial crisis with a national debt of well over 22 TRILLION! And being able to fund services like Social Security and Medicare - and a lot of people rely upon those – the problem is rather simple to understand. We have too many people of the baby boom generation who are retiring, and we simply do not have enough younger people who are working and contributing to the system. 1 So a whole lot of money is going out, not enough money is coming in. Just consider the vast number of younger workers who were simply never allowed the opportunity to exist and to contribute to our system because they were murdered at the altar of convenience and selfishness. And consider how much robust our tax revenues and our economy would be if those millions upon millions of a lost generation had been given the opportunity to live. 2 The face of this nation would be totally different. And many of the problems we’re facing might not even exist. But man chose his way, and soon we will reap what they wanted. And, here’s another question. How many of those potential lives might have been individuals whom God would have called and chosen to be members of His Church at this present time!? That’s another issue that probably weighs on the mind of God. And I think it’s something we ought to think about. Matthew 18 tells a story about Jesus saying, ‘suffer the little children to come unto Me.’ And we could read the whole thing, but I’ll just get to the crux. We are not to harm a little one. Jesus Christ said, ‘It is better that a millstone be hung about your neck, that you harm one of these little ones.’ Now, He may have been speaking about new Church members, but I think by extension, you’d have to say that Jesus Christ simply detest the idea that little children are murdered. We have major political leaders in this country who have supported legislation that would allow doctors the right to murder a baby which had unexpectedly survived an attempted abortion. And I just think – anyone who would vote for that, or even consider that, how wicked, calloused, and vicious that human heart must really be. Still in the wake of the horrible tragedy of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, back in 2012, this very same political leader began a campaign to reduce gun violence through measures to reduce and or restrict gun ownership. And in one highly publicized event, this leader impassionedly pleaded that if his proposed restrictions would save just one child, it would all be worth it. This is the same man that stated that if a baby survives an abortion, go ahead and kill it! What a hypocrite! 3 What a slimy contemptable, damnable, hypocrite! Now, no matter how I attempt to stretch, contort, or flex my mind, I just simply cannot envision God Almighty, and Jesus Christ being pleased with our nations acceptance, and making it right for the cruel sacrifice of God’s potential children. 4 Their pent-up anger (Jesus Christ and God Almighty) and Their disgust will soon be poured out upon our nation and upon our world! And no matter how much I engage in mental gymnastics in attempting to understand, I simply cannot comprehend how anyone who claims to be a member of the Body of Christ can be an advocate, proponent, and or supporter of this so-called right to murder these totally and completely innocent and helpless babies! I cannot fathom it! And if there are any individuals out there reading this who support abortions, may I please beg you – please step back for a moment – and calmly and soberly contemplate the divinely inspired words of the Apostle Paul. And this is something everyone of us needs to think about on a regular basis. This is real what I’m about to read. Romans 14:10 – “…For we shall all [all of us one day] stand before the judgment seat of Christ.” Verse 12 – So then each of us shall give account of himself [or herself] to God.” Someday we’re going to have to stand before Jesus Christ and somehow try and justify what we said, what we did, and what we believed. Now, that’s an awesome moment! And I don’t think you want to be there with somehow being in favor of murdering innocent children. 2 Corinthians 5:10 – “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body [or throughout his/her life], according to what he [or she] has done, whether good or bad [evil].” And, in Galatians 6 – one of my favorite verses. “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. 8) For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap [DEATH], but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap EVERLASTING LIFE.” Those are powerful words! And remember and consider the Words of Jesus Christ in Matthew 12, “…‘every idle word [act or thought] …’ verse 36 and 37, “…’men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. 37) For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.’” Please stop and consider some of the issues I’ve brought up! Not for my sake, for your sake.

7) ‘Thou shalt not commit adultery.’ And, in its basic form the explanation of this commandment is rather straightforward and easy to understand. It speaks for itself. But why did God include this in His big ten!? Why this issue!? Well if a man or a woman pledge their devotion and their fidelity to their mate and then they break that pledge, that promise, that commitment, can God Almighty and Jesus Christ have any confidence that the same person who has pledged their devotion and fidelity to Them has any validity!? If you cannot be loyal to your mate whom you have seen, how can you be loyal to God whom you have not seen!? To paraphrase an idea. Another reason adultery is so troubling, and is a serious and destructive issue that it is, because it has the potential of creating in many people – men, women, children, family, friends, co-workers; the problem isn’t just two people, it emanates out like a rock being thrown into a pond, it overcomes many different people. The mental, emotional, spiritual damage it can cause. Especially to the offended mate. The trouble that it can cause, the guilt, the anxiety, for children. You’ve got to feel badly for the children. Family members, friends, relationships of all types. Often it can lead to divorce, serious financial issues and problems. And there’s the very real possibility of the innocent party ending up with sexually transmitted diseases. You hear about it all the time. In the end it’s all of the pain, the suffering, the anguish – is it worth the fleeting moments of the forbidden pleasure!? In the overall scheme it just isn’t!

And by extension, this seventh commandment, also includes the issue of fornication – Paul talks about that quite a bit – and other divinely prohibited sexual practices. And I’m not even going to go into that here. In addition, this prohibition against physical adultery also includes a prohibition against spiritual adultery. And that is simply the act and the practice of following and pursuing other false gods, false teachers, false religions. And so it actually gets back to the first commandment – ‘Thou shalt have no other gods before Me.’

8) ‘Thou shalt not steal.’ That’s rather simple, straightforward. You can’t take what isn’t yours! You don’t steal from your fellow human being and you don’t steal from God. Back in Owensboro there was a basketball referee who recently stole some checks from one of his friends. O’ my has that caused a führer! And its got all the official’s talking and carrying on. And this young man who is the official, he’s basically burned his officiating career. Because as the other officials say, “If you can’t trust your partner not to steal from you, how can you trust him in anything!?” Pretty good question.

9) ‘Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.’ A passage which goes a real long way of explaining this commandment – and again, just the Word’s of God, ‘Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.’ Back in Deuteronomy 19:15 – “’One witness shall not rise against a man concerning any iniquity or any sin that he commits; by the mouth of two or three witnesses the matter shall be established. 16) IF a false witnesses rises against any man to testify against him of wrongdoing [obviously falsely accusing somebody, lying against somebody], 17) then both men in the controversy shall stand before the LORD, before the priests and the judges … 18) And the judges shall make careful inquiry, and indeed, if the witness is a false witness, who has testified falsely against his brother, 19) then you shall do to him as he thought to have done to his brother; …’” – and this way you shall put this evil out from among you. So, if I was to stand up and say I saw Stan Roberts murder someone. Which is obviously ridiculous. 5 But if I did, and the judge was to believe me, when they all sort it out – according to the Word of God – I’m the one to receive the death sentence not Stan. And the same thing with any issue. It’s supposed to come back on the person who was the false witness. ‘Thou shalt not bear false witness against that neighbor.’ And that’s the essence of what this commandment is saying. We can go back to many places in the Old Testament – Deuteronomy 13; Jeremiah 23 – and we also find out that bearing false witness about the truth of God was in the Old Testament an offense by which you were worthy of death. So therefore a false prophet is one who is bearing false witness against your neighbor. Because if you come up with a line of garbage that confuses your fellow human being and they end up worshiping a false god and a false religion, you are putting that person in extreme jeopardy! And by right the false prophet, the false teacher, should face the same penalty. Which is death. Now again, this is Old Testament institution of justice. So, this is a pretty serious issue.

10) ‘Thou shalt not covet.’ The eventual offspring of covetousness or lust is sin. And death is the offspring of sin. James 1 says, ‘each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires, and enticed. 15) Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; …” – sin doesn’t start out as sin. Sin starts as a thought, as an emotion, as a desire. And at that point we have the opportunity to say, “Get out of here!” Or, we have the opportunity to entertain it. And once we entertain it, we go down into the area of sin, and as James said, “and sin, when it is full-grown [finished], brings forth death.”

The Apostle Paul in Colossians 3:5 called covetousness a form of idolatry. He said the same thing in Ephesians 5. He called covetous man, who is also an idolater. And so when you covet, you’re getting right back to the first commandment. Because you’re an idol worshiper. You have false gods before God. So we keep coming back to that first commandment. ‘Thou shalt have no other gods before Me.’ Well, in clearly identifying covetousness as idolatry, Paul merges the essence of the tenth commandment into the essence of the meaning of the first commandment. And as it were we have almost a complete circle. And this complete circle is what Jesus Christ identified – the first and great commandment, ‘as you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, and soul.’ And we alluded to this principle earlier. But in James 2:17, 20, 26 gives the main punch line. ‘Faith without works is dead.,’ so said James. And if faith without works is dead, then love without works, I think, by extension, by logic, is also dead. To just to say, “Oh God I love You, I love You!” Or, to say to your fellow human being, “Oh I love you! I love you!” and yet there’s nothing backing it up, it’s worthless. It’s just hot air.

We can demonstrate our love for Jesus Christ by manifesting concern, caring, love, respect, kindness, for our fellow human beings – especially members of the Body of Christ. Notice what Jesus had to say in Matthew 25 – I could read the whole passage, but I’ll just get to the punch line. This is the major teaching point. Verse 40 – “…’Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it [a good thing] to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’” I’ll say it again, ‘Inasmuch as you have done one of these kind acts, unto one of the least important people in the Church, you’ve done it unto Me.’ So, we’re right back to the second of those two great commandments. ‘You will love your neighbor as yourself.’ How do you show love for God!? Love your fellow human being - your neighbors as yourself. In short, do unto others as you would have them to do unto you. The golden rule. I had a ruler back in first grade, had it inscribed on back, did any of you have that little ruler!? “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” I’m sure that’s not even allowed to be in a public school anymore. Because that is really a radical idea. Kindness. Concern. But the golden rule is the KEY to being allowed to enter into the Kingdom of God and walking down the golden street’s of New Jerusalem for all eternity! Treat your fellow man with respect, honor, love, caring, kindness. And when you do that, you’re also showing respect, honor, and love, to your Heavenly Father and to your Savior Jesus Christ. Mr. Ted Armstrong often said, “Christianity is not a difficult thing.” Although other churches and religions try to make it very difficult. I mean for some churches and religions you’ve got to speak a foreign language. I don’t know a foreign language. I struggle with English. Some people have all these elaborate stuff that goes on. I’ve had a chance to go to a funeral one time when Mike’s dad died. And I’ll tell ya, I didn’t have a clue what was going on. I do remember thinking – I was at a cheerleading session. Because every time they would turn around they were standing up, and then they’d sit down. And then on que they’d all stand back up. And I leaned over to Mike’s daughter and said, “I feel like the old little jiggle I use to hear, ‘lean to the left, lean to the right, stand up, sit down, fight, fight, fight!’” And that’s what this little religious ceremony was. Just all ceremony. Well, it’s complicated – in their world. Mr. Ted said, “Religion in the eyes of God is so simple.” It’s the same thing Jesus Christ said, ‘Love God and love your fellow man.” That’s what it’s all about. What a simple idea – but it’s the KEY to eternal life.

1. Millennials are on the cusp of surpassing Baby Boomers as the nation’s largest living adult generation, according to population projections from the U.S. Census Bureau. Millennials projected to overtake Baby Boomers as America’s largest generation. Fact Tank – Pew Research Center. Fry, Richard. 1 March 2018. Retrieved 23 April 2019. More than one-in-three American labor force participants (35%) are Millennials, making them the largest generation in the U.S. labor force, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data. Millennials are the largest generation in the U.S. labor force. Fact Tank – Pew Research Center, Fry, Richard. 11 April 2018. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
2. Let’s consider the economic impact of those missing 60 million babies who were aborted, namely tens of millions more people who would have entered the workforce and contributed enough to the U.S. economy … Opinion: Abortion Is Bad for the Economy. Townhall. Mattes, Bradley. 20 August 2018. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
3. Former President Barack Obama received a human rights award Wednesday despite his long record of fighting against human rights for the unborn. Barack Obama, The Abortion President, Receives Human Rights Award. LifeNews.com. Bilger, Micaiah. 13 December 2018. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
4. Today, a 58% majority of Americans say abortion should be legal in all or most cases, … Nearly six-in-ten Americans say abortion should be legal in all or most cases. Fact Tank – Pew Research Center. Hartig, Hannah. 17 October 2018. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
5. …[A]mong people who kill legally and those who kill criminally or promiscuously, the same brain regions are surely involved, … Here’s What Happens in the Brain When People Kill. Time. Kluger, Jeffrey. 10 April 2015. Retrieved 24 April 2019.
…We like to think that we’re safe with our loved ones … Why Ordinary People Murder Their Families. Newsweek. Kelley, Raina. 18 February 2009. Retrieved 24 April 2019.
A Virginia youth pastor has been arrested in the shooting deaths of his wife, stepdaughter and the stepdaughter’s boyfriend in their home on Thanksgiving Day, … Virginia youth pastor held in Thanksgiving slaying of family members. Fox News. Betz, Bradford. 25 November 2017. Retrieved 24 April 2019.“When Jesus had said this, He became troubled in spirit, and testified and said, "Truly, truly, I say to you, that one of you will betray Me." The disciples began looking at one another, at a loss to know of which one He was speaking. …” … Then one of the twelve, named Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, "What are you willing to give me to betray Him to you?" And they weighed out thirty pieces of silver to him. From then on he began looking for a good opportunity to betray Jesus.” – John 13:21-26; Matthew 27:3-10.

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