Good Friday

30 Mar

Good Friday. As a child I always thought that it seemed an unfortunately simple name. Good seems to be a catch-all word for positive circumstances to younger individuals and the name of the day just seemed to lack punch. Further, it seems like the worst of possible days, as our Savior was crucified for crimes that He did not commit.

I was discussing past decisions with my Uncle Joe, knowing what we now know, we wonder how we could have missed the incredible signs that were there. Not to argue the importance of God’s timing at this point, but it is a fact that knowledge changes perspective on past events. You see, with the The knowledge of Easter Sunday, we know that Good Friday is not simply Jesus being Wrongfully Accused.

Even with that knowledge, I think we downplay the significance of the momentous day of Christ’s death. Parenthetically, I, for one, am not that interested in having the debate of whether the death happened on a Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday; we can celebrate it on Friday if any of those is the case (e.g., is Christmas less impactful just because Christ was probably not born in December?) To understand the downplay, Understand that Christ’s death could be said to be the center of all human history.

If humanity was created to bring glory to God, then our existence is at its zenith when we are most glorifying God. Having work that is worthy of the glorification of God is a tricky subject, perhaps even a blog post or three of its own, but many will tell you that it can be accomplished by exemplifying the life of Christ. Everyone will (or at least should) tell you that the only reason we have the ability to glorify God is because of Christ’s death. The only reason we don’t have to answer for that inability is because of the imputation of Christ.

So, wherever one falls in the theology of salvation or theology of ability to work, it is clear that the life of Christ is central to bringing about God’s glory. So, why then did Christ live? God putting on human-ness for us is nice, but what was the reason? To borrow a phrase from Ron Hamilton, Jesus was born to die. He came because we needed a propitiation. He came that he might impute to us that which we could never do by ourselves. The reason Jesus came to earth was so that “His wounds could pay our ransom.”

While understated, that is why this Friday is so Good! Against the backdrop of a society that is making the argument of whether or not it should allow homosexuals to get married, we see the culture slipping away from even arguing what is right, other than a standard they have created themselves. We tend, whichever side we are on, to make our arguments based on our own definition of fair or right. I would assert that virtually noone thinks it is fair or right that someone else should pay the penalty for all of my sins.

The reality is that God is not bound by our definition of fairness, but we are bound by His definition of how to treat individuals kindly. We are responsible for our reactions to others, whether they be appropriate or not. And I’d also look at those who believe the whole thing is a decoy, and they are excited (one way or another) about President Obama signing the Monsanto Protection Act. My excitement needs to not come from these things in the world, but rather on the force of the gospel in my life.

I celebrate Good Friday not only because it is central to human history, but I celebrate it because it is essential to MY history (and present and future, and my life in general). Good Friday was the center-point of Christ’s work, which enables me to live for Him. Good Friday is the day that provides meaning and context to so many other days, like my birthday, Christmas, Easter, or anything else I want to color with the gospel. That is most certainly a reason to call Friday, good, even if it seems like a cheese-monkey name. And to think, all the banks are closed on a day in October to celebrate Columbus finding that which Jesus created millenniums ago, yet we all work on Good Friday. How messed up is that?


One Response to “Good Friday”

  1. Jenni April 21, 2013 at 7:44 pm #

    I love Good Friday. It is such a beautiful day to reflect on the amazing love of Jesus. I love that I get to believe in a story that never gets old. Also, I kind of like the name "Good Friday."

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