Tuesday, May 11 2021 - 2:15 PM
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The Kiss of Betrayal

All kisses are not equal. Some are a form of friendly greeting, while others take a more passionate and sexual route. Beyond this things get complicated, because besides the typical, some kisses are perfunctory, calculated, and even hostile.

“There he was, Judas, one of the twelve leading a crowd of people from the chief priests and elders with swords and clubs; the chief priests and the elders [the church leaders] were right there, ready to arrest Jesus. And Judas, the one who intended to betray Him, had said to the elders and the chief priests that he would give them a sign. Judas Iscariot: ‘I’ll greet Him with a kiss. And you will know that the one I kiss is the one you should arrest’” (Matthew 26:47-48, The Voice).

Both then and now, we can always tell the weak from the strong. The weak are those who carry the swords—guns, clubs, and bats—and who keep looking over their shoulders. They are the ones who are fragile, fearful and anxious; who have run out of words, patience and the ability to reason. All they have left are fear, bullets, and brawn.

A kiss is never simple because its meaning can be as mysterious and complicated as the person giving it. Among lovers kisses are usually transparent symbols of affection and adoration. But kisses can also be confusing, because while they convey a sense of loyalty and commitment, one’s actions may bring the level of demonstrated affection into question. There are plenty of country songs about betrayal and love gone wrong.

Judas’ kiss was such, one that portrayed an element of greeting, familiarity and grace, yet in reality it was a calculated signal to the powers of darkness that the person being kissed was the enemy. Thus Judas’ kiss was the kiss of death!

Know who you are kissing, and why?

If you enjoyed this you may like, Sick of Playing God | Why Betrayal Hurts So Much.

Rich DuBose writes from Northern California.

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About Rich DuBose

Rich DuBose

is director of Church Support Services for the Pacific Union Conference.

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