Ever wondered why today is called “Good Friday?” Why can we speak of an act so dreadful in such a positive way?
We should never play down the awfulness of crucifixion. It’s one of the cruellest and most painful forms of punishment. The pain is relentless and the humiliation total, the penalty reserved for the worst kind of criminals.
Through this terrible act, the salvation of believers becomes a reality. That’s what makes it so good for us. In Jesus’ forgiveness for someone being crucified alongside Him, we see His love and His grace at its most powerful: all who call on the name of the Lord will be saved. When Jesus cried out “It is finished” it was not a desperate cry of defeat, it is a powerful shout of victory. His work was completed.
Please read Luke 23 (the whole chapter)
On that first Good Friday, there was no let up for Jesus. No pause for thought, no break from the humiliation, no relief from the pain. A late night trial before the Sanhedrin is followed with indecent haste as He is handed over to Pilate for sentencing. He is tortured and abused; in a few hours he will die a criminal’s death and be buried.
Thought for today Suffering unbearable physical pain, Jesus rejected any offer of a sedative, and was therefore fully alert to the taunts of the priests and teachers of the law (vv. 35), the crowd (vv. 36) and those who were crucified with Him (vv. 39). At the same time, He experienced the agony of separation from His Father, as He took on Himself the sins of the whole world – past, present and future.
His death was the only way by which sinful humanity could be reconciled to God. He was the perfect sacrifice whose death could wash away the stain of sin and the terror of death. Reflect on what he has done for you and thank Him today for the new life you have in Him.