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His Own Place

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his own place[1]

24 And they prayed and said, "You, O Lord, who know the hearts of all, show which of these two You have chosen 25 to take part in this ministry and apostleship from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place." 26 And they cast their lots, and the lot fell on Matthias. And he was numbered with the eleven apostles. (Acts 1:23-26).

INTRODUCTION:

1.     Read text:

2.     Regarding the text:

(1)         Time period = days between the ascension of Jesus and day of Pentecost.

(2)         A need to find a replacement for Judas to serve along with the other apostles.

(3)         Peter describes the betrayal (v. 16) of Judas, and the end result (v. 18).

A.       Mt. 27:5 – Judas “hanged himself.”

B.       Acts 1:18 – In the process, the rope or limb broke, and “falling headlong, he burst open in the middle and all his entrails gushed out.”

(4)         Notice v. 25 – “Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.”

A.       NIV – “go to where he belongs.”

B.        

3.     What is your own place?

(1)         Judas had been in a place of honor, but proved himself unworthy.

(2)         Judas went to the place that is the ultimate place for all hypocrites after death.

(3)         We might say, “He went to the place of his own choosing.”

4.     What is the place of your choosing? 

DISCUSSION: HOW COULD ONE CHOOSE SUCH A PLACE AS DID JUDAS?

I.            NOTICE THE OPPORTUNITIES HE IGNORED.

1.      Judas was chosen as one of the original “twelve” apostles.

(1)           He had the opportunity to experience miraculous powers (Mt. 10:1).

(2)           He had the opportunity to associate with:

A.         Simon – (Peter or Cephas).

B.         Andrew – Gk. = manly (cf. Jn. 1:41).

C.         James and John – sons of Zebedee (James 1st to die – Acts 12; John wrote 5 books of NT).

D.         Philip and Bartholomew.

E.         Thomas – Didymus – Twin.

F.         Matthew – “the gift of Jehovah,” the tax collector.

G.        James the less;  Thaddeaus – called Judas not Iscariot (Lk. 6:15).

H.         Simon the Zealot.

I.           Judas Iscariot.

2.      Judas had the privilege of being sent on the limited commission (Mt. 10).

3.      Judas had the blessing of listening to the greatest preacher of all times.

(1)           Never man spake like the Son of God (Jn. 7:48).

(2)           Judas got to look in the eyes of Christ as He preached about hypocrisy, covetousness, forgiveness, and the like.

(3)           Judas had the chance to sit with Jesus and observe the Passover.  He had his hand on the table with the Lord.

4.      Despite all the opportunities and influences for good –

(1)           Judas made his final plans to betray the Lord.

(2)           Judas ignored the opportunity.

II.          THINK OF THE COMPANiONS HE SOUGHT.

1.      He had the company of 12 of the greatest men the world has ever known.

(1)           11 other apostles.

(2)           Jesus – the greatest

2.      BUT, notice Mt. 26:14-15.

(1)           Mark tells us, “when they (chief priests) heard it they were glad (Mk. 14:11).

(2)           Judas was more concerned about his own interest than those of our Lord.

3.      At Gethsemane, rather than being with the Lord, Judas was with a “great multitude with swords and clubs” (Mt. 26:47).

4.      One day, Judas was with men seeking to save a lost world.  The next day he is in the company of a crowd seeking to destroy a good and decent man.

(1)           We could talk long about Judas motives, but reality = with wrong crowd.

(2)           1 Cor. 15:33.

(3)           What do you suppose would have happened if Judas went to Mary (alabaster box) or Peter (ready to defend) or Lazarus (raised) or John?

5.      Everyone on occasion finds themselves in the wrong kind of crowd.  What do you do when you do?

III.        LOOK AT THE CHOICES HE MADE.

1.      I do not know the exact motives for Judas actions, however I do know that he did what he did by choice.

2.      Judas made the choice to betray Jesus.

(1)           Chief priests might have encouraged it, but they did not force it.

(2)           Not far from the very spot where Mary presented Jesus to Simeon (Lk. 2).

(3)           Judas knew it – Notice Mt. 27:4 “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.”

A.         At least Judas owned up to his choices.

B.         After throwing the thirty filthy pieces of silver over the court of the priests,

C.         Judas rushed down the valley of Hinnom; climbed the slippery slope.

D.         And there hanged himself (perhaps with the cords of the very bag in which Judas carried his coveted treasury.

E.         Some folks today blame everybody else in the world, for their situation.

3.      Choices lie before you (Josh. 25:15)

(1)           To dress immodestly or not.

(2)           To abort / murder a baby.

(3)           To use “recreational” drugs (some legal some illegal).

(4)           To view pornographic images.

(5)           To enjoin yourself to the work of the church or to avoid it.

(6)           To saturate you life with Jesus Christ or to serve Satan.

4.      In the face of the choices, the devil works overtime to numb our senses and blindfold our consciences.

(1)           Let us be careful of the choices we make, or we shall be like Judas and only at the last moment see the ugliness of the sin we have committed.

(2)           Let us be careful that when we do make the wrong choice, we quickly rely upon the mercy of God (by repentance and confession).

CONCLUSION:

1.     Judas, “went to his own place.”  A place of his own choosing.

2.     He didn’t have to go, but he turned down opportunities and sought the wrong kind of companions.  When he did, that is where he went.

3.     So too will we go.


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[1] Outline from Winfred Clark’s book, Expositions Of The Expositor Vol. 2.  Adaptations and additions made by Toby L. Soechting for preaching at Howe, TX (9/1/2002).

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