Why did Judas betray Jesus? Was it for the money? It is difficult to go back in time to discover the exact intentions of Judas Iscariot, but we can at the very least examine the price Judas was paid for his betrayal and see if the money was tempting enough to make a man hand over his friend to certain death.
Let’s first look at the Gospel passage found in the book of Matthew.
Then one of the twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, “What will you give me if I deliver him to you?” And they paid him thirty pieces of silver. And from that moment he sought an opportunity to betray him. (Matthew 26:14-15)
In Biblical terms, this is not the first time thirty pieces of silver are mentioned. In the book of Zechariah, the prophet is paid the same amount for his daily wage as a shepherd.
Then I said to them, “If it seems right to you, give me my wages; but if not, keep them.” And they weighed out as my wages thirty shekels of silver. Then the Lord said to me, “Cast it into the treasury”—the lordly price at which I was paid off by them. So I took the thirty shekels of silver and cast them into the treasury in the house of the Lord. (Zechariah 11:12-14)
Additionally, in the book of Exodus thirty pieces of silver was the cost of a slave who was killed.
If the ox gores a slave, male or female, the owner shall give to their master thirty shekels of silver, and the ox shall be stoned. (Exodus21:32)
What does this all mean in today’s current economy?
Read more at Aleteia.