Friday, April 22, 2011

It's Friday but Sunday is coming

Today is Good Friday.

"The worst and the best day of all."
-Beth Moore in Jesus the One and Only
Graveyard by Evgeni Dinev
Image: Evgeni Dinev

We are "celebrating" the worst imaginable thing happening to Jesus Christ. We are celebrating it because God's design was that sin could only be forgiven through sacrifice, and Jesus' life was that sacrifice once and for all of us. Despite our mistakes, despite our selfishness, and despite our continuing sinfulness, he died for us.

When you were dead in your sins...He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross.
-Colossians 2:13-14

He was forgiving us even while we were killing him:

Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing."
-Luke 23:34
Golgotha by bela_kiefer
Image: bela_kiefer

But his death was painful, physically and spiritually.

Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?" (which means, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?").
-Matthew 27:46

At this moment in history, Jesus took on all of the sins of mankind, including my own. This was according to prophesies from many years earlier, such as Deuteronomy 21:23 and Amos 8:10. But the most striking of all the prophesies that came true on the first "Good Friday" is this:

Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering...the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed... he was led like a lamb to the slaughter... the Lord makes his life an offering for sin...For he bore the sin of many...
-Isaiah 53:4-5, 7, 10, 12

It is incomprehensible and somewhat disturbing to think about what we are celebrating on Good Friday. But we know that the story doesn't end there...

It's Friday but Sunday is coming.
-Sunday by Tree63
Cathedral by Simon Howden
Image: Simon Howden

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