Good Friday is actually a very solemn day. It is a day of deep mourning and contemplation. Like Palm Sunday, there is not much that I need to explain, but there are some things that stick out to me.
While Jesus is being beaten, ridiculed, and accused of things He did not do, was silent the whole time. He never refuted or defended Himself. To those accusing Him, the Sanhedrin/ Pharisees, this was a sort of admission of guilt. But those that actually judged him, Pilate and Herod, found this as a sign of strength and innocence. Jesus was strong. He didn’t have to defend Himself because He knew He was not wrong and that His Father would redeem Him. In this day, this is absolutely unheard of. We are constantly having to defend ourselves, but we should try to have a little more faith that our Father will redeem us in the end.
I find it interesting how it was those that knew Jesus and witnessed His miracles were the ones to condemn and crucify Him, but that those that didn’t know Him found no fault in Him. Let me say that again, it is those (us) that know Him, that crucify Him.
As the bible dictates, it was tradition for the Roman government to release a prisoner of the crowds choosing. The crowd chose Barabbas over Jesus. Barrabas was in prison for rebelling against Rome and inciting a riot, the same thing that Jesus was falsely being accused of. Barrabas was released, and Jesus took his place. Jesus, in true form, was paying the price for the crime (sin) of someone else.
After Pilate released Barrabas he asked the crowd what he should do with Jesus. They yelled that they wanted Him crucified. Pilate asked them why, since Jesus had not committed any crimes. They didn’t have an answer, but yelled back “Crucify Him!” The same crowd that celebrated and praised Him on Palm Sunday was now wanting to kill Him on Friday. Let me say that again, it is the same people (us) that praise and worship Him on Sunday, that have Him crucified on Friday.
He is beaten, ridiculed, and then crucified at 9am. While suffering the kind of pain that none of could us ever imagine, He still intercedes on our behalf when He prays “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” I wonder if today He is praying “Father, forgive them even though they know what they are doing, for they are stubborn.”
The bible tells us that 2 others were also crucified that same day, one on each side of Jesus. They were criminals, most likely robbers.Whatever the crime, is was serious enough to be crucified. One denies Jesus as the Savior, while the other accepts and asks to be remembered to which Jesus replies “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.” This is ultimate proof that it is only our acceptance of Jesus Christ as our Savior, and His perfect grace, that grants us passage into Heaven. Our good deeds will not get us in, and like this criminal our crimes will not keep us out. Thank you Jesus for your grace!
Jesus actually dies twice while on the Cross. The first death He experiences is the momentary separation from God as He bore the sins of this world. Sin separated us from God, and Jesus experienced this separation once and for all. This is why He yells “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani!” which means “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me!” His separation is evident as this is the first time He does not reference God as Father.
Jesus died at 3pm. The bible records a Roman soldier piercing His side to verify if He was truly dead. He experienced His second death, the physical death, from loss of blood and suffocation from having to bear the weight of His body on the cross. Let me say it again, He died from having to bear the weight of His body (the church) on the cross. I’m sure if it could be verified, we would find He also died from a broken heart.
Don’t let the day off from work and the nice weather fool you. Good Friday is a day of mourning. We mourn as we do at funeral, because Jesus died on the cross. We should also mourn because of what we do everyday to keep Him there.
Tomorrow is Black Sabbath
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