Problem: Accounts conflict over when Satan entered Judas
Verses: Luke 22:3-6, John 13:23; Status: Weak

In Luke we are told that Satan entered into Judas before the Last Supper, and he went to the chief priests and agreed to betray Jesus. This is Luke 22:3:

Then Satan entered into Judas called Iscariot, who was of the number of the twelve. He went away and conferred with the chief priests and officers how he might betray him to them. And they were glad, and agreed to give him money. So he consented and sought an opportunity to betray him to them in the absence of a crowd. (ESV)

The last supper comes later, at Luke 22:14 onwards. The gospel of John, however, says that Satan entered Judas at that time. This is John 13:27:

Then after he had taken the morsel, Satan entered into him. Jesus said to him, "What you are going to do, do quickly." (ESV)

The solution is fairly obvious: Satan entered into Judas at least twice. There's no indication that John is speaking of the same incident as Luke. The problem is only severe if you see Satan as having a permanent and unshakeable hold on Judas from the time he first "enters" him. This certainly isn't a reading that's forced on you.

Updated: 2014-02-10

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