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  • Writer's pictureJason Rice

Why is Good Friday Good?

What is so good about Good Friday? Have you ever thought it was strange that each year we remember the Friday before Easter as good? This represents the day that Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, was crucified, died, and was buried in a tomb. Jesus took all the sins of the world upon him; he who knew no sin became sin so that we could been seen as righteous before God.

2 Corinthians 5:21 (ESV)

21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

To the followers of Jesus at the time, nothing would have been “good” about that Friday. All seemed lost; the victory was anything but apparent! On that day, the worst act performed by humanity occurred. Christ was put to death by the people he was trying to save. This was the most horrible event to ever occur in human history! He did not deserve this horrible death. Evil and darkness seemed to prevail that day.

What happened on Good Friday?

Good Friday began early in the Garden of Gethsemane where Judas gave up the location of Jesus to the Sanhedrin and Caiaphas in particular. Before this, though, Jesus prayed in the garden for “the cup to pass” from him, meaning he asked the Father for there to be another way. He was in so much agony that he sweated drops of blood! Yet, he carried out and fulfilled what he had come to do, which was save the world. Christ was taken and tried before the Jewish ruling council and was sentenced to death after confessing that he was the Son of Man. After a mock trial, they carried him before Pontius Pilate who knew Jesus was really innocent, but he gave into what the crowd wanted, to crucify Jesus.

The reason why Good Friday is “good” is because Jesus accomplished what we never could. He lived the life that we could not, the perfect sinless and spotless life in order for his righteousness to be give to us. When Christ died on that Friday afternoon, God looked down on him and saw our dirty, filthy, sinful lives. And because Jesus took our place with the punishment we deserved, when God looks upon us he sees the perfect, sinless life that Jesus lived. When Jesus cried out “it is finished” from the cross, as recorded in John 19:30, the perfect life that he lived was complete.

The life that Adam (humanity) could not live, Jesus picked up and lived for us. Our redemption took his perfect and sinless life, as well as his sacrificial death.

The Faithfulness of Christ

The faithfulness of Christ’s life can be seen especially the night before Good Friday. There is one scene that shows Jesus’ perfect obedience, and if not for this obedience we would all be doomed. The night before Good Friday (Maundy Thursday) Jesus hosted his disciples and led them in the Passover meal. His Spirit was troubled as he entered the Last Supper (John 13:21). After revealing during the meal that one of them was going to betray him, the bible records this scene that reveals Christ’s faithfulness. Did you know Jesus is depicted as singing a few times in the bible? In Matthew 26:30 there are six words that occur that capture our imagination! “When they had sung a hymn.” Jesus gave praise to the Father even in his darkest hour! Jesus never lost his song; he never lost his hope. When he was in the wilderness being tempted by Satan, he never lost his song. Also, despite the trials that Jesus went through he always praised and glorified the Father. Then he sang an actual song to God. Jesus and his disciples sang a hymn to conclude their Passover meal. They probably sang a portion from Psalm 118. Listen to what is included in this psalm.

Psalm 118:22–29 (ESV)

22 The stone that the builders rejected

has become the cornerstone.

23 This is the Lord’s doing;

it is marvelous in our eyes.

24 This is the day that the Lord has made;

let us rejoice and be glad in it.

25 Save us, we pray, O Lord!

O Lord, we pray, give us success!

26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!

We bless you from the house of the Lord.

27 The Lord is God,

and he has made his light to shine upon us.

Bind the festal sacrifice with cords,

up to the horns of the altar!

28 You are my God, and I will give thanks to you;

you are my God; I will extol you.

29 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;

for his steadfast love endures forever!”

Imagine Jesus singing about the festal sacrifice when he was about to be that very sacrifice. Imagine Jesus singing about the cornerstone when he was that very cornerstone that the builders rejected. Jesus would then go to the garden of Gethsemane where he would sweat blood due to the agony he felt. But, yet, he never gave up his song. He would go on to die a horrible and shameful death on the cross demonstrating his love for humanity. Christ was the perfect sacrifice and mediator between God and man. Christ is our brother as is depicted in Hebrews 2:11-12. Jesus is also singing here in this passage, singing praise of the father as our perfect mediator. If we sing out of the faithfulness that Jesus displayed through his life, death, resurrection, and ascension, then we will never lose our song and our hope.

The death of Christ was terrible for him, yet good for us because it was our only hope for salvation.

Why is Good Friday “good?”

Because of his groans, we have a song,

Because of his weeping in the night, we experience joy in the morning;

Because he bowed his head in death, we can lift up ours in hope;

Because of his stripes, we are healed;

Because of his tears, ours will be wiped away;

Because of his crown of thorns, we receive imperishable crowns;

Because he was rejected, we are welcomed as sons and daughters;

And because of his death, we have eternal life.

Good Friday is “good” because Christ accomplished what we never could, a life of perfect and sinless obedience to the Father. And because of his life, sacrificial death, and resurrection, we as believers live out of his faithfulness of Christ to glorify God the Father though the power of the Holy Spirit.

Let us remember in thankfulness the life and death of our Lord and Savior this day, this “Good” Friday.

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