Did Judas Have A Choice?

Q. I was reading the question on Judas and the Anti-Christ, and am wondering if this was free will on his part to betray Jesus, or was he chosen?

I would like to think that he was chosen and that God will forgive him. It could not have been an easy thing to do when he followed Jesus for the whole time of his ministry. Did God pick him because he was not of pure intent?

Any insights you may have on this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks again for all your Blessed work.

A. Piecing together various scriptures, it appears that Judas was never saved, and that Jesus might have chosen him knowing that Judas would betray Him. Here’s a quote from John’s Gospel. Then Jesus replied, “Have I not chosen you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil!” (John 6:70)

Prophecies tell of a betrayer as early as the Psalms. At the Last Supper Jesus gave a piece of bread to Judas, identifying him as the one after quoting Psalm 41:9. Even my close friend, whom I trusted, he who shared my bread, has lifted up his heel against me.(John 13:18) Earlier he had warned, “The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him. But woe to that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would be better for him if he had not been born.” (Matt. 26:24)

The other disciples didn’t trust Judas. They were all Galilean except him, and maybe that’s part of the reason. But it certainly isn’t all. John’s recollection of the time when Mary anointed Jesus with expensive perfume is a good example of their feelings about him. But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected, “Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year’s wages.” He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it. (John 12:4-6)

So Judas wasn’t a believer, and Jesus knew he was the betrayer from the beginning. But most scholars agree that Judas acted out of his own free will in betraying Jesus. As to his motives, we have only speculation. Nevertheless, I firmly believe that had Judas asked to be forgiven before he hung himself, the Lord would have granted his request. But there’s no reason to believe that Judas ever asked.

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