There are two interesting places in Scripture where the price of thirty pieces of silver are mentioned. The one everyone knows is that of Judas’ betrayal of Jesus in Matt. 26:14,15. The other, however, is in Zech. 11:12,13 where Zechariah asks for his wages as a prophet. (There is another reference in Ex 21:34 which sets the value of a slave.)
It is worth pondering the connection between these two verses because it is not a simple “this is that” correspondence. Klaas Schilder writes on these passages and comes to a remarkable and challenging concluding application, applicable to every Christian but perhaps especially to preachers:
What can be more moving than to put Zechariah’s declaration next to the narrative of Matthew? Reading Matthew alone, I am disposed to say: What a giant in sin that man Judas was! Compared with him I am a dwarf, a Lilliputian, te Deum … But when I hear Zechariah say that it is very natural for all unfaithful sheep to dismiss the Shepherd of Israel for thirty pieces, Judas becomes as small as I. And at second thought I become as great as he in transgression. Lord, as often as I do not believe, I dispatch the Good Shepherd, I grow to Judas’ size, I attain the stature of the scribes in sin. O God, be merciful to me, a sinner! Reading Matthew alone, I think of Judas as I ponder Lord’s Day 31 (the keys of the kingdom) of the Heidelberg Catechism. Reading Zechariah also, I think of myself, of the incriminating power of the Word, of the ultimatum of God’s shepherding.
– Christ in His Suffering:Through the Garden Scene, K Schilder, p.79