In the Garden
Judas left the inn so abruptly that I sat glued to my chair for a few seconds before I got up to follow him. He was like a man possessed, definitely eager to get somewhere. I caught up with him when he stopped to take a breath and asked where he was going in such a rush.
"I have to get back to the supper!" he shouted. "Some of the men don't even know that I left, they were so mesmerized by the fantasy stories about resurrection and eating his body and drinking his blood. Jesus told me I should do what I needed to do, and do it quickly." I thought this surely meant that Judas had to pick up something for the meal.
He took off again, this time even faster than before. I tagged along as best I could, but I was barely able to keep him in sight. He stopped in front of a large two-story house. He looked up and shook his head. I caught up with him as he stood there.
"I'm too late," he said, "They're gone." I asked where they went. "Oh, there's this garden where he likes to go and pray. I don't like the place, and neither to any of the other guys. We usually just stay back in a clearing while Jesus goes into the garden by himself to pray. Sometimes we fall asleep while he's in there. He's disappointed when he has to wake us up."
I asked if I could go with him.
"No!" He thundered. "Get out of my way! I know who you are, always poking around, pretending you're one of us, always trying to get his attention! It's almost like you want to be an apostle too!"
I looked into his face and screamed at the sight! Intense red eyes glaring, ears like pointed horns, and a mouth of chisel-sharp fangs greeted my gaze. I froze and fell to the ground. Judas took off running and did not look back.
I staggered to my feet, intent on getting to the garden to warn Jesus. I started running but Judas turned on me and my legs stopped working. I was petrified by the power of his gaze. I knew I was not dealing with any normal human being.
Slowly I hobbled after him and ducked into the bushes whenever he turned, searching for me, his eyes bright red flares. I shuddered when I heard him growl: "Jesus is doomed, don't you understand? He wanted to die and he will!"
I tried to move but I was paralyzed, confused and helpless before his demonic power. He kept going, on his way to murder Jesus. But I could not let it happen. I struggled to my feet and staggered after Judas, who was now just a speck fading in the distance.
Finally I got to the garden, surprised that Judas wasn't there yet. I heard Peter talking with the other apostles. He said Jesus already had to wake them up once and he didn't want it to happen again. He knew Judas was up to no good but felt he could keep him from doing any harm to Jesus. He said that he would give his life for Jesus and they should all be prepared to do the same.
Suddenly we were surrounded by soldiers with clubs and swords. As soon as Jesus heard the tumult he came into the clearing. He looked terribly agonized. Judas appeared and went up to Jesus.
"Hail Rabbi!" he said, and kissed him. Immediately the soldiers surrounded Jesus and put him in chains. He made no struggle. The apostles took off running; and, I hate to say, so did I.
Trembling in fear in my hiding place I could nevertheless hear the cries resounding in the night. Loud shouts of "Crucify!" And then, "Barabbas!" And again, even louder, "Crucify him! Crucify him!"
The same crowd of admirers that welcomed Jesus just a few days ago was now a wild mob demanding his death. I crawled out of my lair but it was too late to get to the governor's palace. I heard the roar when Jesus was condemned to death. I slouched home in tears of grief and shame, a coward and a failure.