Got this little bit of Bible exposition from my fellow blogger, Doris. Since Doris thought it worth sharing, and I enjoyed it, I guess you also will find it interesting and worthy of your time.
A perverse man spreads strife, and a slanderer separates intimate friends. —Proverbs 16:28
Jesus made a remarkable statement concerning Judas. He said, “‘Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?’ Now He meant Judas the son of Simon Iscariot, for he, one of the twelve, was going to betray Him” (John 6:70-71).
To what was Jesus referring when He identified Judas as “a devil”? Was He speaking figuratively or factually? Is Jesus saying that a human being could not only host an evil spirit in his soul, but that a person could actually become a demon?
Some teach that Judas had become so perfectly possessed by Satan that he actually lost his humanity. Before we accept this interpretation, let us remember that after Judas delivered Jesus to His enemies, he felt such remorse that he committed suicide. Could a demon feel remorse for sin? I do not think so.
What I believe Jesus is identifying in Judas Iscariot as a “devil” is something that, today, exists unchecked among many Christians. I’m talking about slander. In the New Testament the Greek word diabolos, which is translated “devil” in this text, is translated impersonally elsewhere as a “false accuser,” “slanderer” or “malicious gossip.” In fact, 1 Timothy 3:11 and 2 Timothy 3:3 both translate diabolos (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, #1228) as “malicious gossip(s).” (continued here)
Here Frangipane gives us an example of how the best explanation of the Bible is the Bible. The example Frangipane provides here is related to word usage. To figure out what Jesus meant when he used the word “diabolos”, Frangipane considered how that word was used in other books.
Frangipane example also helps us to understand why we must read the whole Bible. In fact, we can also use some of the latter books (mostly New Testament) in the Bible to understand earlier books (mostly Old Testament). Hebrews, in particular, does a great job of explaining how the Old Testament pointed to Jesus.
Yet a good many people never even bother to read the Bible, and that is something we can all understand. Because parts of the Bible are a struggle to read, I did not get around to reading the Bible until I was in my fifties. Now I enjoy reading the Bible, and I know God expects us to work and that God rewards work. In fact, we enjoy working. The most boring thing is doing nothing.
There is a way to make the task a bit easier. Read the New Testament before tackling the Old Testament. Note, however, until you read the Old Testament you won’t begin to fully appreciate the New Testament. Why? The story of our redemption by Jesus begins in Genesis, not with His birth in Bethlehem.
Anyway, when you are bored or depressed, that is a great time to read your Bible.