Good Friday. Why do we call it good? From all appearances, that day looked like anything but good.
The Passion of Chris
A false arrest in the wee hours of the morning. Friends who ran in fear. One denies he even knew Him. One betrays Him for a pittance.
Accusations that fly in the face where slaps and spit follow. Soldiers who had any compassion trained out of them, beating Him to near death.
Mocking words that contradict all He ever said. A crowd jeering, crying out for death. Religious leaders leading the rabble-rousers. Political leaders afraid to do what is right.
A heavy, splintered cross laid on a back where the flesh was already torn away. Crown of thorns piercing the brow with its poison. A long and hard Via Dolorosa. Golgotha in view.
Sound of nails in flesh and sinew. Thud of crosses in deep holes. Cries of pain and agony that only the crucified know.
A few lone followers, some women and the disciple John, deep in the throes of grief and grasping for some understanding behind all this suffering and finality to a ministry that flourished only a week ago.
Alone. Forsaken. Separated. Darkness. Earthquake. Storm. Death.
Sin exposed to the judgment of a Holy God.
Nothing of this day looked good. This was a day gone horribly wrong.
Or was it?
“The King of the Jews” was written in three languages, a foretaste of the Gospel preached to all nations.
A thief on another cross entered into Paradise, giving us hope that salvation is still offered at the very last hour for those who will believe.
Forgiveness offered from a heart only understood by a loving Heavenly Father.
Words spoken from parched and bleeding lips that shout the victory battle cry, “It is finished!”
The Passover Lamb slain for the sins of the world.
Two secret disciples, Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, come out of hiding to acknowledge the One who came from God, offering Him burial in a borrowed tomb, one more prophecy fulfilled.
A veil torn in two so that all people will know they are welcomed into The Presence.
The penalty paid in full, judgment recompensed.
A Redeemer revealed.
A Kosher death completed as the blood of the perfect Lamb is poured as the perfect Sacrifice.
The Plan, laid foundationally eons before by Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, brought to completion.
And I see it. And it is good!
Remembering the cross of Christ I recall my sins and His suffering. My debt and His payment. My hopelessness and His free gift. My searching and His seeking love. My past and now the future He offers.
“Jesus paid it all. All to Him I owe.
Sin had left a crimson stain. He washed it white as snow.”
Good Friday. It was a good day – for me and for the world.
Revised and reposted from March 2013