This past week, as I drove to Santa Cruz with My Sweet sleeping in the passenger seat, I was listening to NPR talking to experts talk about the Gospel of Judas. This came out, not surprisingly, on Maundy Thursday, the day that Judas, having just taken the first ever Holy Communion, went and for 40 pieces of silver let the authorities know that he would help them capture Jesus. The experts say that the text for the new gospel discusses mystical conversation or revelation from God that Judas was chosen to carry out part of God's plan. So his betrayal was actually an act of faithfulness.
Many people may have trouble shifting thier view point of the archetypal traitor, but not me. I do not know for sure if this new Gospel is authentic or not, nor am I sure that God directly told Judas to hand over the Savior. But this I do know, Judas was one of the chosen twelve who spent time learning directly from a compassionate Lord. After Judas gave Jesus over to the authorities, which did get the ball rolling for the the Ressurection and salvation for humankind, he felt so guily that he could not live with what he had done. I always wondered what God would do with Judas, the betrayer and yet a follower of Christ and someone who played a very intsrumental part in the Grand Plan. I know God is compassionate and forgiving, so it would not surprise me to see Judas in Heaven.
There are a few other conflicts I stuggle with. One of them being that I am listening to NPR when I should be enjoying the peace and wonder of driving through the amazing Santa Cruz Moutains. I also have an inner conflict about picking up sea shells. They never look as nice at home, dry and sitting on a shelf, when they were ment to be a part of the wonderous sea scape. And yet I want them, a kind of souvineer.
I also hate zoos - taking animals out of their home and putting them in an artificial environemt to be stared at. However, I apprecialte the zoological advances that result from this, plus the fact that people get to see a lion, bobcat or flock of butterfies. When I was at Sequioa National Park I felt incredibly saddened when I saw the stumps of ancient giant Redwood trees that were shipped to the World's Fair. My heart wrung at the thought that the trees took centuries to create. None the less, I want people to know the overwhelming magesty of the Giant Sequia. And, if I were not privaleged enough to live nearby, I would want to see these trees on display. So, if the treasures of of King Tut or the Amazon come touring this way, I will feel a bit of guilt, but I be darned if I'll miss seeing them.