You can picture it.
Three crosses on a hillside, the middle one holding Jesus the Nazarene, son of Joseph and Mary.
He’d been beaten beyond recognition, whipped. A ‘crown’ made of thorns had been thrust onto His head, and He’d been marched through the streets, outside the city, and up the hill. Then He’d been nailed–NAILED–to the cross. It had been raised and dropped into the ground with a thud, and the long, tortuous hours of torture and death had begun.
Occasionally, he would push up on the feet–pierced with a nail–so that He could fill His lungs with air.
Then, due to the pain, He’d let some of the pressure off those pierced feet by hanging from His pierced hands.
This torture could have gone on for hours.
Why do we call THIS ‘Good’?
Because it was necessary. It was crucial. It was what He came to do.
“…the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:45)
“Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour.” (John 12:27)
He knew why He came…He came to die! It was ‘good’, because He did it out of love. He did it for us. He did it to pay our debt–ours!
He willingly gave His life for us–for all who will call upon Him as Savior and Lord.
And in so doing, He made LIFE available for us, while He fulfilled the prophecies.
“He was despised and rejected—
a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief.
We turned our backs on him and looked the other way.
He was despised, and we did not care.
4 Yet it was our weaknesses he carried;
it was our sorrows[a] that weighed him down.
And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God,
a punishment for his own sins!
5 But he was pierced for our rebellion,
crushed for our sins.
He was beaten so we could be whole.
He was whipped so we could be healed.
6 All of us, like sheep, have strayed away.
We have left God’s paths to follow our own.
Yet the Lord laid on him
the sins of us all.
7 He was oppressed and treated harshly,
yet he never said a word.
He was led like a lamb to the slaughter.
And as a sheep is silent before the shearers,
he did not open his mouth.
8 Unjustly condemned,
he was led away.[b]
No one cared that he died without descendants,
that his life was cut short in midstream.[c]
But he was struck down
for the rebellion of my people.
9 He had done no wrong
and had never deceived anyone.
But he was buried like a criminal;
he was put in a rich man’s grave.”
Jesus paid the debt He did not owe so that we could have a life we did not deserve–all because of the grace and mercy of God.
“God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him would not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but so that the world, through Him, could be saved.” (John 3:16-17)
Why do we call ‘Good Friday’ Good?
Because by sacrificing Himself in our place, He earned our forgiveness and redemption.
He made LIFE available for us!
“When he appeared in human form,
8 he humbled himself in obedience to God
and died a criminal’s death on a cross.
9 Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor
and gave him the name above all other names,
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.” (Philippians 2:8-11)
Make no mistake: Jesus IS Savior and Lord. At His name, every knee will bow, and every tongue confess that He IS Lord!
In the meantime, it was His LOVE that made “Good Friday” good…because at the cross is where He showed it most!