How Disappointment Turns Toxic -Lessons from the LIfe of Judas

Pastor Sam Sutter - 3/13/2023

How you react when you’re disappointed says a lot about your character… the thing is, you’re going to get disappointed. It’s part of living in a fallen world – people will let you down, you’ll think God lets you down, and you’ll let yourself down. Disappointment is a given, but a harmful reaction isn’t. What you do when you’re disappointed shows what you’re made of and what sort of faith you have. In fact, if you can learn how to be disappointed in a healthy way, you’ll be set up for a more resilient life.

Disappointment and Faith: The Story of Judas

His life was the antithesis of love.


“Brothers and sisters, it was necessary that the Scripture be fulfilled that the Holy Spirit through the mouth of David foretold about Judas, who became a guide to those who arrested Jesus. For he was one of our number and shared in this ministry.”

ACTS 1:16–17


Luke 9:1–2 (NIV) When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.

Mark 14:3–11 (NIV) While he was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head.  Some of those present were saying indignantly to one another, “Why this waste of perfume? It could have been sold for more than a year’s wages and the money given to the poor.” And they rebuked her harshly.

“Leave her alone,” said Jesus. “Why are you bothering her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. The poor you will always have with you, and you can help them any time you want. But you will not always have me. She did what she could. She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial. Truly I tell you, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”  10 Then Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve, went to the chief priests to betray Jesus to them. 11 They were delighted to hear this and promised to give him money. So he watched for an opportunity to hand him over.

 John 6:15 (NIV) 15 Jesus, knowing that they intended to come and make him king by force, withdrew again to a mountain by himself.

John 6:60–71 (NIV) 60 On hearing it, many of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?” …  66 From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him…  70 Then Jesus replied, “Have I not chosen you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil!” 71 (He meant Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, who, though one of the Twelve, was later to betray him.)

Mark 14:21 (NIV) 21 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.”

Judas asks “Surely not I, Rabbi” (Matt. 26:25). In the garden at Jesus’ arrest, all the gospels have him addressing Jesus as “teacher.” Never Lord. Contrast this with Thomas touching the resurrected Jesus, exclaiming, “My Lord and my God!” (John 20:28). Or the disciples asking about their possibility of betrayal, saying “Is it I, Lord?” – Daniel Darling

Luke 22:20–23 (NIV) 20 In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. 21 But the hand of him who is going to betray me is with mine on the table. 22 The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed. But woe to that man who betrays him!” 23 They began to question among themselves which of them it might be who would do this.

Acts 2:23–24 (NIV) 23 This man was handed over to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. 24 But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.

Series outline adapted from Darling, Daniel. The Characters of Easter. Moody Publishers. Kindle Edition.

Downloads & Resources