Matthew 26:50, The Friend of Jesus

But Jesus said to him, “Friend, why have you come?” Then they came and laid hands on Jesus and took Him.

//Can you guess who Jesus is talking to? It’s his betrayer, Judas. Judas has just delivered Jesus into the hands of his enemies, and Jesus calls him friend.

Often, much is made of this statement, as if Jesus was still considering Judas a true friend. But this ignores the literary reference to earlier in the book of Matthew. Here is an earlier reference to a friend:

But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment. So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. –Matthew 22:11-12

Does it sound like the king is genuine in calling this man a friend? Then you haven’t read the next verse in the story:

Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

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