John 13:27a

Then after he had taken the morsel, Satan entered into him.-John 13:27a

As I read this verse, I was reminded of the character Weston from Perelandra (1944/2003) by C.S. Lewis. When Lewis first introduced Weston in the first book in his Space Trilogy, Out of the Silent Planet (1938/2003), he was already self-centered, manipulative, and controlling, governed by evil. In Perelandra, Weston was embodied by the evil one and became a sort of half-man.

I wonder what it meant that Satan entered Judas. He had already made the deal to betray Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. Luke 22:3-6 tells of the transaction, but it also says that Satan entered him there. These two texts would suggest that Satan entered him twice. Was Judas dealing with a conflicted spirit, a staccato torment? Regardless, the implication seemed to be that in these times of betrayal, Satan had overtaken Judas’s thoughts.

How about for believers today? When we give space to sinful thinking and evil intention, does Satan enter us or is it shorthand for communicating that evil has its way?

Jesus, you came to crush the head of Satan and destroy evil’s reign, yet so often tendrils of self-centered sin continue to grow in our lives. Teach us to recognize the evils of sin and to step into the light, remembering your finished work. Amen.