Friday, April 06, 2007

Good Friday?

If Good Friday is the day we remember that Jesus Christ was crucified on the cross as an innocent man, then why do we call it "Good"?

Wikipedia defines it for us. "Good Friday is the Friday before Easter or Pascha. It commemorates the crucifixion and death of Jesus at Calvary. This year, it is on April 6, 2007.

Good Friday is a holy day observed by most Christian religions. Special prayer services are often held on this day with readings from the Gospel giving accounts of the events leading up to the crucifixion. Mainstream Christian churches view Christ's crucifixion as a voluntary and vicarious act, and one by which, along with resurrection on the third day, death itself was conquered." ("Good Friday", www.wikipedia.com)

It's good because if Jesus Christ (sinless, son of God) hadn't died for our sins, in our place, we wouldn't be celebrating anything. Christianity wouldn't be around. Jesus' death paid the price for the forgiveness and freedom we enjoy as Christians. He died in our place so that we could live in his.

Suffering was the path to life. It seems counter-intuitive. But then God likes to work that way to remind us that his ways are not like ours.

It's important that we remember the suffering that Christ endured. In fact, I recommend that ever Christian watch the Passion of the Christ every Good Friday. It puts our suffering in perspective. It puts life in perspective.

But if we lose sight of Easter in Good Friday we miss the point. His suffering and dying was overcome on the third day when God raised him from the dead. This showed that Jesus was an acceptable sacrifice for our sin. This showed that death and sin had been defeated. Therefore, life is now available to all who trust in the risen Christ Jesus.

I hope you'll celebrate this divine victory this Easter Sunday--whether you follow Christ or not. Either way, he died for you. The least you could do is live for him.