Grace, Betrayal, and Denial

Study Guide

At the last supper, Jesus shows extraordinary grace to the man who will betray him. Judas has the opportunity to accept Jesus’ offering, but he hardens his heart. While Peter will also fail, his heart is with Jesus, and redemption will prevail.
  1. Both Judas and Peter fail in this passage. Reflect on ways you identify with each of these characters. How should their stories challenge and encourage us?

  2. Peter cannot receive instruction because he wants answers on his own terms. Have you ever had to obey Jesus even when you didn’t fully understand a situation? How did that affect your faith?

Key Points
  • Even when Jesus is about to suffer betrayal and death, he is thinking about how to care for his disciples rather than looking for comfort from them.

  • Jesus has authority over this moment, yet he feels the wrongness of the world deeply. He has empathy for our brokenness, suffering, and temptation.

  • In the face of Judas’ betrayal, Jesus does not judge him. Jesus continues to offer himself in an intimate way that honors Judas.

  • Receiving communion from Jesus should have been the greatest honor of Judas’ life. However, he chooses to harbor his small, petty sin, and his heart is hardened.

  • Peter is ready for action, but he is not prepared to die in shame. While he fails in this moment, he stays with Jesus and will get his chance to show his loyalty.

Other Scripture References

Scripture: John 13:18–38