In these verses from the book of Luke, we find Jesus speaking to his disciples during the Last Supper. He draws their attention to the somber reality that one of his closest followers, Judas Iscariot, would soon betray him. The phrase "the hand of him who betrays me is with me on the table" is symbolic of the shocking betrayal happening even in such a sacred and intimate moment. This scene reflects the depths of human frailty and the capacity for betrayal even within the closest circles.
- The Foretold Path
Jesus acknowledges that despite the impending betrayal, the course of events leading to his crucifixion has been determined. The words "The Son of Man indeed goes, as it has been determined" point to the divine plan and the fulfillment of prophecies regarding his sacrificial mission. This emphasizes Jesus' submission to God's will and his understanding of the greater purpose he is about to fulfill.
- The Consequence of Betrayal
Jesus follows this statement with a solemn declaration: "but woe to that man through whom he is betrayed!" These words convey the seriousness of Judas' actions. The term "woe" expresses deep sorrow, lament, and a sense of impending doom. Jesus recognizes the gravity of the betrayal not only in terms of his personal suffering but also in the spiritual consequences for the one who would betray him.
- Understanding Free Will and Divine Plan
These verses highlight the intricate interplay between human choices and God's sovereign plan. While the betrayal was part of God's foreknowledge and ultimate purpose, it doesn't diminish the moral responsibility of the one committing the act. Judas, despite being part of the divine narrative, still had the agency to choose his actions.
Psalm 41:9: "Yes, my own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, who ate bread with me, has lifted up his heel against me."
Acts 2:23: "Him, being delivered up by the determined counsel and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by the hand of lawless men, crucified and killed."
In conclusion, Luke 22:21-22 captures a poignant moment during the Last Supper where Jesus reveals the impending betrayal and its profound implications. It underscores the contrast between human betrayal and the divine plan, highlighting the intricacies of free will and God's sovereignty. This passage serves as a reminder of the complexities of the human heart, the weight of personal choices, and the overarching purpose that Jesus' sacrificial death fulfilled.
Luke 22:21-22. “Behold, the hand of him who betrays me is with me on the table. The Son of Man indeed goes, as it has been determined, but woe to that man through whom he is betrayed!”