Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
April 13, 1967
NUMBER 48, PAGE 10b-11a

What About Judas Iscariot?

Ules G. Reid, Jr.

In an effort to justify the doctrine of "once saved-always saved," Baptists and other denominationalists take the position that Judas Iscariot was never saved! To avoid the impact of the statement made in Acts 1: 25, that "Judas by transgression fell", they have been forced to take the position that Judas was never saved in the first place! To deny that Judas Iscariot was a child of God, and fell when he transgressed God's law, is to deny the plain teaching of the Bible, and to cast reflection on the wisdom and judgment of God, Christ and the Holy Spirit.

Judas Iscariot was a child of God by virtue of his fleshly birth under the Jewish dispensation. Circumcision of the male child on the eighth day, brought him into a covenant relationship with God. (Gen.17: 9-14.) Numerous times in the New Testament, the Jews are referred to as "they of the circumcision." (Acts 10:45, 11:2, Gal. 2:9). To deny that Judas was a child of God under the Law of Moses is to deny the Bible!

In Matt.10:1, we have the record of Jesus calling the twelve disciples, and giving them power to cast out unclean spirits, and to heal all manner of sickness and disease. The names of the twelve Apostles are given in verses 2 through 4. In verse 1, Judas is referred to as one of the disciples; and in verse 2, he is referred to as one of the apostles. To say that Judas was never saved, is to say that Jesus chose a child of the Devil to be one of his Apostles, or Ambassadors! Jesus was qualified to perceive the thoughts and intents of the heart of man, and if Judas had been against Christ, even from the beginning, would not Christ have known this? (Matt. 9:1-4; Jno. 2:24,25). In Matt.10:5-7, Jesus commanded the twelve Apostles to go to the "lost sheep of the house of Israel" and to preach that the "kingdom of heaven" is at hand. Would you believe that Christ selected a child of Satan to restore unfaithful Israel, and to instruct them concerning the kingdom that was soon to be set up? In verse 8 of this same chapter, Jesus commands the twelve Apostles to "heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, CAST OUT DEVILS..." If Judas was a child of Satan, you would have Satan working against himself. Jesus said in Lk. 11: 16-18, "If Satan be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand"? Notice in verse 16, Jesus said: "I send you forth as sheep." The word "sheep" as a figurative expression is always applied to children of God; either faithful or unfaithful. (Mat.10:6, Matt. 25:32-34.) The Lord refers to Judas and the other Apostles as "sheep."

In verses 19 and 20, Christ instructs the Apostles not to worry about their speech when they would be delivered up before governors and kings, for his sake, "for it is not ye that speak, but the spirit of your Father which speaketh in you." Would you believe that the Spirit of God dwells in a child of the Devil? The Lord said in Jno. 14:17, "The word cannot receive the spirit..." If Judas was lost, he most certainly was "of the world", and therefore could not receive the Holy Spirit. But, since he did receive the Spirit, we know that he was a child of God. The Apostle Peter said, in Acts 5:32: "God gives the Holy Spirit to them that obey Him." Continuing, in Matt. 10:24,25, we see that Judas and the other Apostles are referred to by Christ as "disciples" and "servants of the Lord. "Since Judas was a "servant of the Lord", he could not have been a "servant of the Devil." Christ said: "No man can serve two masters." (Matt. 6:24). Notice this statement by Christ, in verse 40: "He that receiveth you, receiveth me." To take the position that Judas was never saved, is to teach that Christ personally selected and sent forth a child of the Devil, as an Ambassador of Christ, and said: "If you receive him, you receive me." Who could believe this? This chapter teaches that Judas was a disciple of Christ, and was personally chosen and appointed an Apostle by the Lord himself. It also teaches that the twelve Apostles could perform miracles, by the power of the Spirit of God, that dwelt in them. We also notice in this chapter, that to receive a "disciple" of Christ, is to receive Christ! To persecute a "disciple" is to persecute Christ. (Acts 9:5).

What happened to Judas? What caused him to betray the Lord for the price of a slave; thirty pieces of silver? Baptists, and others teach that the Devil was in Judas from the beginning, but the Bible does not teach this! In Lk.22:1-3, we have this divine record: "Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover. And the chief priests and scribes sought how they might kill him; for they feared the people. THEN entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve." Observe that Luke says that as they were preparing to observe the Passover supper, then Satan entered into Judas! John states "And supper being ended, the Devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him." Judas was a faithful disciple of Christ, until he allowed Satan to enter his heart. In Acts 1:16, 17, Peter said: "Men and brethren, this scripture must need have been fulfilled; which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus. For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry." Later on in this same chapter, verses 23-25, we have the record of Matthias being chosen to take the place of Judas, who "by transgression fell." If Judas had never been saved, how could he fall? What did he fall from?

The same thing that happened to Judas can happen to children of God today! He allowed Satan to enter into his heart, and therefore "by transgression" fell.

Let each Christian be reminded of the statement by the Apostle Paul in 1 Cor. 10:12: "Let him that thinketh he standeth, take heed lest he fall."