Matthew 27:1-10 NIV
Judas Hangs Himself
1Early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders of the people made their plans how to have Jesus executed. 2So they bound Him, led Him away and handed Him over to Pilate the governor.
3When Judas, who had betrayed Him, saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders.
4 “I have sinned,” he said, “for I have betrayed innocent blood.”
“What is that to us?” they replied. “That’s your responsibility.”
5So Judas threw the money into the temple and left. Then he went away and hanged himself.
6The chief priests picked up the coins and said, “It is against the law to put this into the treasury, since it is blood money.”
7So they decided to use the money to buy the potter’s field as a burial place for foreigners. 8That is why it has been called the Field of Blood to this day.
9 Then what was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet was fulfilled:
“They took the thirty pieces of silver, the price set on Him by the people of Israel, 10 and they used them to buy the potter’s field, as the Lord commanded me.”a
Wicked men see little of the consequences of their crimes when they commit them, but they must answer for them all. In the fullest manner Judas acknowledged to the chief priests that he had sinned, and betrayed an innocent person.
This was full testimony to the character of Christ; but the rulers were hardened. Casting down the money, Judas departed, and went and hanged himself, not being able to bear the terror of Divine wrath, and the anguish of despair. There is little doubt but that the death of Judas was before that of our Blessed Lord.
But was it nothing to them that they had thirsted after this blood, and hired Judas to betray it, and had condemned it to be shed unjustly. Thus many make light of Christ Crucified. And it is a common instance of the deceitfulness of our hearts, to make light of our own sin by dwelling upon other people's sins. But the judgment of God is according to truth.
Many apply this passage of the buying the piece of ground, with the money Judas brought back, to signify the favor intended by the Blood of Christ to strangers, and sinners of the Gentiles. It fulfilled a prophecy, Zechariah 11:12.
Through the purchasing of the potter's field with the thirty pieces of silver, the price that Christ was valued at, a prophecy in the writings of the Old Testament had its accomplishment: but about this there is some difficulty. The evangelist here says it was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet; whereas in his prophecy there is no mention of any such thing.
There is indeed an account of his buying his uncle Hanameel's son's field, in Jeremiah 32:7, but not a word of a potter, or a potter's field, or of the price of it, thirty pieces of silver; and that as a price at which he, or any other person was valued; but the passage which is manifestly referred to, stands in Zechariah 11:12,13, where are these words;
“I told them, “If you think it best, give me my pay; but if not, keep it.” So they paid me thirty pieces of silver. And the Lord said to me, “Throw it to the potter”—the handsome price at which they valued me! So I took the thirty pieces of silver and threw them to the potter at the House of the Lord.”
The removing of this difficulty, it might be observed, that the Syriac and Persic versions make no mention of any prophet's name, only read, “which was spoken by the prophet”; and so may as well be ascribed to Zechariah, as to Jeremy, and better.
Judas went far toward repentance, yet it was not to salvation. He confessed, but not to God; he did not go to Him, and say, I have sinned, Father, against heaven. Let none be satisfied with such partial convictions as a man may have, and yet remain full of pride, enmity, and rebellion.