We’ve read the story, seen the movie and yet many can’t articulate well why an apparent sad Friday became “good”. Good Friday is an important day in Christendom when we commemorate our Lord’s death. We fast, pray and mourn. Some follow the tradition wear black, read a passion (suffering) passage from the Bible and maintain silence during the sacred hours (12 Noon to 3 PM).
I have always had a problem with “mourning” on Good Friday. It’s not that I am advocating some sort of a celebration on this day, just that our mourning is grossly misplaced. Let me break it down:
On the first Good Friday, the day when our Lord was crucified, there were women who were weeping too. And Jesus said “Daughters of Jerusalem, DO NOT weep FOR ME but weep for YOURSELVES and YOUR CHILDREN”
They were sad that an innocent man was being unjustly crucified. Jesus did not need their sympathy, He came to die. Death has no victory over Him, He will soon take its sting away.
He wanted them to remember their own sin and that of their children and their utter helplessness to escape its wages (eternal death). That should make them weep. This realization will help them appreciate God’s provision to save through the crucified Lamb.
It is a good reminder for us too, Jesus needs no pity. We are the ones that need to be pitied… helplessly and mindlessly cruising along the highway to hell.
Back in the book of Numbers, there’s a story that runs parallel to the Good Friday story, albeit a shadow. When the Lord sent fiery serpents as a punishment for their sin, and many lost lives. God had mercy on them and asked Moses to make a bronze serpent and set on a pole”. Those that knew they couldn’t help themselves and wanted to live, looked up at the bronze serpent and LIVED. Those that didn’t believe in God’s mercy/provision, perished.
Somewhere in the time between Moses and Hezekiah, Israelites began worshiping the bronze serpent(Nehustan), instead of remembering their sins and God’s deliverance. We are no better than the Israelites. We love observing the rituals/traditions that surround this day. Good Friday should never be about our “weeping” for our Lord – rather it should on our sins and the eternal hell we all deserve/d. And that God loved us, to send a Deliverer!
Thank God It’s (Good) Friday!