Who was Judas Iscariot?
Judas was one of the 12 disciples and a part of Jesus' inner circle.
The name "Iscariot" could be telling us that Judas was a "zealot." This was a group of people who wanted to overthrow the government in Jesus' day. While it's possible Judas was part of this group, it's not conclusive. The name "Iscariot" likely means that Judas was from the town of "Kerioth" in southern Judea.
As the gospels tell us, Judas betrayed Jesus and handed Jesus over to be crucified. The authorities in Jesus' day wanted to arrest him, but feared the large crowds that enjoyed Jesus' teachings and signs. Judas let the authorities know when Jesus would only be with a few close disciples, so that he could be arrested without fear of a crowd.
The Gospels tell us that Judas was also a thief who would steal, while claiming he wanted to help the poor.
The Gospel of John tells us that Judas:
*Was controlled by the devil.
*Was chosen by the devil to betray Jesus.
*Was a devil himself.
In the Gospels, we don't ever hear of any redemption for Judas. Matthew tells us that Judas hanged himself. The Book of Acts tells us that Judas died on a field he'd purchased, in an accident. Judas' story is one of the more difficult ones in scripture.