Psalm 2:12, “Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and you perish in the way, for his wrath is quickly kindled. Blessed are all who take refuge in him.”
Matthew 26:48-49, “Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “The one I will kiss is the man; seize him.” And he came up to Jesus at once and said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” And he kissed him.”
To kiss the Son is to pay homage to him as the King (Ps. 2). Judas kisses the Son and betrays him (Matt. 26). A kiss of homage turns into a kiss of betrayal.
The Son knew beforehand though that his kingship meant he was to be a rejected king. Strike the shepherd-king and the sheep-servants will scatter. While the chief priests and elders plotted with Caiaphas, the King of Israel was being anointed for death by a woman in a lepers house. The whole scene is striking and full of irony.
Matthew inverts Psalm 2. The Son who deserves to be submitted to, instead submits to the way of perishing. In the end, Judas takes his own life, not realizing that his kiss delivered Jesus unto death.
Now the question worth pondering is, did Judas know where Jesus was headed? Was Judas actually delivering Jesus into the hands of the elders and chief priests as a way to speed up Jesus’ messianic mission? Did Judas kiss the son as a way to honor him as the messiah he thought he was? Did Judas know he was following a king who saw his battlefield taking on a cross?
Jesus did not fall into trap. He was not the messiah Judas thought he was. He embraced the way of perishing so we could embrace the way of blessing. The crucified messiah is the Son of Psalm 2 and though Judas kissed the Son, he did not kiss him as the Son he thought he was. To kiss the Son is to kiss the crucified Son.