A Time of Waiting

Acts 1:12-26

After the ascension of our Lord, the disciples walked the half mile or so back to the city where they entered their lodgings. There they joined the women who had followed Jesus from Galilee, His mother Mary and His brothers, spending their time in prayer; as well they should have under the circumstances. At some point, they were all together with the entire body of believers, some 120 or so in all, and Peter stepped to the fore.

He began to describe how the actions of Judas Iscariot had come about in fulfillment of prophecy, beginning with a rather grisly description of his fate:

(With the payment he received for his wickedness, Judas bought a field; there he fell headlong, his body burst open and all his intestines spilled out. Everyone in Jerusalem heard about this, so they called it the Field of Blood.) (1:18-19)

We know from Matthew’s account (Matt. 27:1-5) that Judas threw the coins back at the priests and then went off and hanged himself, apparently at the property they had bought with the money he had returned. It would appear that his body decomposed quickly in the warm Mediterranean sun and fell apart… a reference to the consequence of sin that is reinforced in 1:25. Continuing with his message, Peter turns to the Psalms:

“For,” said Peter, “it is written in the Book of Psalms:

“‘May his place be deserted;
let there be no one to dwell in it,’


“‘May another take his place of leadership.” (1:20)


Then Peter moves to his point; Judas by his treachery, has left a vacancy among the 12; another must be chosen to carry on their mission.


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