Was Judas Iscariot saved? Was Judas forgiven?

Jesus spoke directly about the eternal destination of Judas: "The Son of Man goes as it is written of him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been better for that man if he had not been born" (Matthew 26:24).

God, in His sovereignty, planned for Jesus to be betrayed. He knew Judas would sell Him out for thirty pieces of silver. At the same time, Judas made his own choices as God gives people free will. Judas' choices coincided with God's plan. At the same time, Judas' choices resulted in his own damnation. Jesus called out Judas' sin at the last supper, to his face. Judas had continual opportunity to repent and be saved. Even after he betrayed Jesus, he could have spoken of the error of his ways, the sin against God, and asked for forgiveness. Something compelled him to return the money to the Pharisees, but he did not return to Jesus and repent. Instead, he hung himself (Matthew 27:5–8).

Judas spent about three years with Jesus. He was among those sent out to proclaim the gospel and heal people (Luke 9:1–6). Judas saw Jesus as a prophet and possibly even the Messiah. But he did not have saving faith in Christ.

Like many today, Judas was a follower of Jesus for a time, but failed to see the complete truth of who Jesus is—the Savior, the Son of God, the Redeemer.


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