[QUOTE] The eventual betrayal of Christ was prophesied in the Old Testament (both in Psalms and Zechariah). And as Christians, you (and formerly I) are taught that only through Christ can one find salvation. That the sacrifice of Christ was a necessity. Assuming these things to be true, the question must be asked: How must Judas be judged?
ON one hand, his actions are mortifying. He betrayed the son of God and allowed him to be butchered. On the other, Judas’ actions were necessary for our salvation. For whatever reason, Christ did not hand himself over. He had to be betrayed (as per the prophesy). This raises two dilemmas (for me, at least).
The first is perhaps the most common question. God knew of Judas’ actions prior to Judas physical existence. If his actions were indeed sinful, God’s judgment of Judas was made far before Judas was born. He could not avoid his destiny, because God had already communicated the prophesy. God cannot be proven wrong. Thus, Judas had no choice.
Secondly, even if we forego the prophesy, Judas actions are entirely necessary. We are taught that Christ is the lamb, sacrificed for OUR salvation, yes? How then could the actions of Judas be sinful? If it hadn’t been Judas, it could have been anyone. The same rules apply. Judas must be of some importance though , if not, why didn’t Christ hand HIMSELF over to be slaughtered? There is some meaning there.
These questions disturb all Western ideas of objective right and wrong. Morality, it seems, is left quite grey.
What say you? [/QUOTE]
Dear friend in Christ,
Can we agree on this as an accurate definition of God’s Divine Nature?
“God is all and only everything Good; perfected.”
From this premise which has to be true or God simply would not be God; we proceed.
TThe idea of “predestination” is not only wrong; it’s not even a slight possibility, as it requires two quite impossible realities.
First that God can do evil [predestination is an evil act.] Preknowledge in no way is the same as causing evil or sinful personal choices. Permitting an action that is evil, is NOT the cause of that act,
Second The issue of humanities “mind, intellect and freewill; [all SPIRITUAL THINGS like God Himself], all though in God they are perfected, in man, not so much, come into necessary review.
Because these Spiritual Things can’t be “inherited,” passed on from parents to siblings, nor the result of evaluation, which requires “matter,” we can understand the source of these powerful gifts must originate from SPIRIT, and further because of there uniqueness and power, they must have been given for a specific purpose.
Because of space limitations, I will simply share that this purpose is singular, but by necessity, optional. We are to do good and avoid evil.
Humanity is specifically Created by God, to know, love, serve Him in this life, in order to enjoy the possibility of spending Eternity in God’s Presence. We were created to LOVE God who desires to be in a personal relationship with us.
But love is always a sacrifice of ones self, or it’s NOT love.
Where you are off-track is in not fully understanding God’s Nature. Because God gives humanity a mind, intellect and freewill, PRECISELY for the reasons noted, God simply cannot [not simply “will not,” but actually cannot], NOT PERMIT each and every “man” to choose FREELY to make right use of these gifts, or to DENY there right use.
One is at GREAT SPIRITUAL RISK, in assuming that God can predestine. God cannot!
God permits evil and our personal evil choices for two precise and constant ant reasons.
First to PERMIT “man” to exercise his mind and intellect in accord with man’s freewill. Thus exposing humanity to potential Grace, or sin? Possible sanctification or further exposing our base sinful nature. OUR PERSONAL CHOICE!
Second for God’s Glorification. Which is evidenced by mans free choice for Good, resulting in Glory to God, or should man choose to do evil; God is still Glorified by PERMITTING man to act freely, even in opposition to God’s Divine will.
The fact that God KNOWS never means that God CAUSES, for God, by Divine and Perfectly Good Nature, simply can do no such thing.
You also miss the mark in assuming that “God HAD TO” choose this particular means of Salvation. NO! God did not HAVE TO, rather, God freely choose to.
God CREATED the Universe by “WILLING” it into existence. God Could have simply WILLED our Redemption, but choose not too. God too has a mind, intellect and freewill; but HIS ARE PERFECT.
Love and prayers,