It happened this day in history – in 1780. During the Revolutionary Wary, American General Benedict Arnold met with British Major John Andre to discuss handing over West Point to the British in return for the promise of a large sum of money and a high position in the British army. The plot was foiled and Arnold, a former American hero, became synonymous with the word “traitor.”
Arnold had enemies within the military, and in 1777, five men of lesser rank were promoted over him. Over the course of the next few years, he married for a second time and he and his new wife lived a lavish lifestyle in Philadelphia, accumulating substantial debt. The debt and the resentment Arnold felt over not being promoted faster were motivating factors in his choice to become a turncoat.
We are all self-promoters on some level. I had an old friend who used to say, “It is in my best interest to do what is in my best interest.” Jesus had a better plan. He said he came to become a servant, not a master.
Benedict Arnold had become an American hero. But I’m guessing you can’t name even a single achievement from his life. It only takes one bad decision – driven by pure greed or selfishness – to define us for the ages. Because of one bad decision, Benedict Arnold is known as a traitor. The same can be said of Judas.
What about you?