Q. I have a question that I hope you can help me with. It concerns Matthew 27 :3-4.
Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, saying, “I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood.” And they said, “What is that to us? see thou to that.”
Judas admitted he sinned and repented. Is there a chance he may be saved and in heaven?
A. The Greek word translated repent means to change one’s mind, and this is what Judas did where the betrayal of the Lord was concerned. He acknowledged to the priest that falsely accusing Jesus was a violation of the commandment which prohibits bearing false witness (Exodus 20:16). Also Deut. 19:16-19 says a man who gives false testimony must bear the penalty of the crime he falsely accused someone else of committing.
But Judas did not confess to being a sinner in the general sense and did not ask the Lord to save Him. He was merely admitting to the priests that he had committed a single sin. Since the priests would not listen to him, Judas in effect imposed the penalty for his crime upon himself by taking his own life.
While He was still in the upper room with His disciples Jesus said He had not lost any of the disciples His Father had given Him except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled (John 17:12). He was speaking of Judas, thus declaring that Judas was not saved.
I’m convinced that had Judas said some version of the sinner’s prayer he would have been forgiven. But it appears that he was only trying to undo his most recent act, rather than making a general confession of sin and pleading for salvation.