MEDITATION ON OUR LORD'S PASSION: And He That Betrayed Him, Gave Them A Sign, Saying: Whomsoever I Shall Kiss, That Is He, Hold Him Fast
GIOTTO di Bondone
No. 31 Scenes from the Life of Christ: 15. The Arrest of Christ (detail)
And he that betrayed him, gave them a sign, saying: Whomsoever I shall kiss, that is he, hold him fast.Mt.xxvi.
The great name of an Apostle were with Judas was honored, is now turned into the name of a traitor, and so this name, Judas, which amongst the ancient Israelites was most honorable, is become through detestation of that sin most ignominious amongst Christians. This is the fruit of sin, that good men avoid all conversation with the wicked.
Consider the careful diligence of this traitor, who lest he should not have his money, taught them the way how to apprehend him, and also how to keep him, and so a master of virtue, he became a master of iniquity: He was before sent, for the conversion of people, now he teacheth others to destroy the Author of life. Thou dost learn hereby the quality of sin, which resteth not in this, to make a man a sinner, but proceedeth further, to make him also a teacher of wickedness. Pray thou unto God that he never suffer thee to be drawn from him, lest thou fall into sin like Judas.
Fr. Francis Costerus S.J. 1616