In the morning at Bethany, Jesus is anointed by a woman with pure nard, an expensive perfume. Judas objects to what he deems as wasteful spending of money that would have been better utilized in support of the poor. Judas said this not because he cared for the poor, but because he was a thief and wanted to keep the money for himself. Jesus rebukes him along with the other disciples who object: “The poor you always have with you, but you do not always have me” (John 12:8).
Spies had already been lurking around the Temple questioning people about Jesus’ whereabouts after He finished his preaching each day earlier in the week. So far, they had gained little information for the priests plotting against the Lord.
The chief priests meet this day in one of the rooms adjoining the Temple, for the purpose of deliberating on the best means of putting Jesus to death. Just at the close of their deliberations, they are told that one of Jesus’ disciples seeks admission. It is Judas, who left the Lord’s company back in Bethany. They admit him, and he says to them: “What will you give me if I deliver Him to you?” (Matthew 26:15). They are delighted at this proposition and offer him thirty pieces of silver; the outrageous deal is made.
To testify to her detestation at this betrayal and to make atonement to the Son of God for the outrage committed against Him, the Church from the earliest ages has consecrated Wednesday to acts of penance. In our own times, the fast of Lent begins on a Wednesday (Prosper Guéranger’s The Liturgical Year, vol. VI, 274-6).
By courtesy of World Catholic Report.
Artwork: Judas Iskariot , by Eilif Pettersen (1878)