The ACTS Files – Fulfilling the scripture regarding Judas – Acts 1:15-20 – 12/07/2015
This is a series in the Book of Acts which looks to visit the text from the Book of Acts on a line by line and verse by verse teaching and Lord willing we will get through the full book of Acts, this is part of a New Testament bible study series that you can read all other studies in this section on this link.
Acts 1:15 (ESV) In those days Peter stood up among the brothers (the company of persons was in all about 120) and said, 16 “Brothers, the Scripture had to be fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit spoke beforehand by the mouth of David concerning Judas, who became a guide to those who arrested Jesus. 17 For he was numbered among us and was allotted his share in this ministry.” 18 (Now this man acquired a field with the reward of his wickedness, and falling headlong he burst open in the middle and all his bowels gushed out. 19 And it became known to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the field was called in their own language Akeldama, that is, Field of Blood.) 20 “For it is written in the Book of Psalms, “‘May his camp become desolate, and let there be no one to dwell in it’; and “‘Let another take his office.’
We see in the articles that are written regarding the Acts of the Apostles that they were very dynamic in what they did for the Lord and I believe that this is because they followed Christ’s instruction and went to where they were meant to be, they were told to go to Jerusalem and await the Spirit helper. It seems like such a simple instruction but when we ponder the bible we realize that man’s separation from God in the first place was the failure to follow a simple instruction in the Garden of Eden.
The disciples and brothers, all 120 of them had gathered and this was truly the beginning of people showing great spiritual growth and maturity and we read of the first one which was Peter. Peter that a few months earlier couldn’t even admit that he knew Jesus took a leadership role. Those of you who judge Peter harshly may scoff that this is hardly surprising as Peter spoke up often to Jesus and usually in a boastful or prideful manner, but this was different.
Peter was a transformed man, he knew that Jesus was the real deal; he had held the nail pierced hands, had seen the wounds on his body and was an eyewitness that Jesus had indeed risen from the dead. He had matured more in that short period of time than he did in three years of intensive discipleship with Jesus. What he said showed the maturity that I speak of…
V16 “Brothers, the Scripture had to be fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit spoke beforehand by the mouth of David concerning Judas, who became a guide to those who arrested Jesus. 17 For he was numbered among us and was allotted his share in this ministry.”
Peter states that Judas did not get in the way of God’s plan for Jesus life, he helped fulfil it! That to me is mind blowing and this is before the disciples speak out at Pentecost so the religious leaders will be assuming that this whole “Jesus thing” is going to die down and that they can get back to being perceived as the holy ones, yes there is a damaging rumor going round that he rose again but that will die down in time, let’s get ready to celebrate Pentecost…
We will cover Pentecost if the Lord wills if I get as far as Acts 2, which was a public declaration of what I am typing about today Peter is standing up in from of fellow believers today but when the time is correct he will put himself in harm’s way and complete the transformation that was the dynamic apostle who was so pivotal in evangelizing the Jewish believing world.
Luke tells us in narrative what happened to Judas…
V18 (Now this man acquired a field with the reward of his wickedness, and falling headlong he burst open in the middle and all his bowels gushed out. 19 And it became known to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the field was called in their own language Akeldama, that is, Field of Blood.)
Now we know from the Gospel of Matthew chapter 27 the following scripture regarding Judas and what happened after Jesus was delivered to Pilate and Judas knew at that point he had condemned an innocent man to death…
Matthew 27:3 (ESV) Then when Judas, his betrayer, saw that Jesus was condemned, he changed his mind and brought back the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders, 4 saying, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.” They said, “What is that to us? See to it yourself.” 5 And throwing down the pieces of silver into the temple, he departed, and he went and hanged himself. 6 But the chief priests, taking the pieces of silver, said, “It is not lawful to put them into the treasury, since it is blood money.” 7 So they took counsel and bought with them the potter’s field as a burial place for strangers. 8 Therefore that field has been called the Field of Blood to this day. 9 Then was fulfilled what had been spoken by the prophet Jeremiah, saying, “And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him on whom a price had been set by some of the sons of Israel, 10 and they gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord directed me.”
And Luke finishes this narrative in Acts that Judas did hang himself but his cause of death was when he fell headlong that his inside burst out and that is why the field was known as the field of blood. And Judas was condemned to be buried among the strangers, which was a big deal to the Jewish people of that day that they had in advance burial places.
Lastly Peter shows great maturity by quoting scripture to show why they had to replace Judas.
V20 “For it is written in the Book of Psalms, “‘May his camp become desolate, and let there be no one to dwell in it’; and “‘Let another take his office.’
Peter was not saying that they could not have done the mission with only 11, but that the scripture stated that he must have another take his office. This tells me that Peter was seeking what the Lord wanted as opposed to a personal preference and he did scripture to show that he was on the right track. When we align our will with God’s will according to correctly applied scripture then we will know that we are doing the will of God in our lives. Peter was certainly on the right track and if the Lord wills we will see who replaces Judas Iscariot in the next article in the book of Acts. In case you are interested he quoted Psalm 69:25 and 109:8.
God bless and I pray this was a blessing and please feel free to like, share or comment on here or whatever social media platforms you use as the Lord leads you to