On Friday 2 April 2010, Christians will be remembering what happened on that first Good Friday – THE HEINOUS CRIME OF CRUCIFYING JESUS CHRIST, THE SON OF GOD. Why, then, do we refer to that day as ‘GOOD FRIDAY’? To answer this question, we must ask two further questions: WHO WAS GOOD? and WHAT WAS GOOD?
1) WHO WAS GOOD?
Certainly not the Jewish and Roman leaders who were responsible for the crucifixion or the two robbers crucified on either side of Jesus Christ. What about the disciples, especially Mary, the mother of Jesus, the other women and John, who were standing near the cross? Even they could not claim to be good, because since Adam and Eve disobeyed God, the Bible makes it quite clear that ‘As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one;”’ (Romans 3:10) and ‘For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.’ (Romans 3:23)
But there in one exception – JESUS CHRIST, THE SON OF GOD.”He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.” (1 Peter 2:22). ‘For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathise with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are – yet was without sin.’ (Hebrews 4:15)
And so we see the amazing scene on that first Good Friday – THE ONLY GOOD PERSON WAS JESUS CHRIST and HE WAS SUFFERING PHYSICAL, MENTAL, EMOTIONAL, VOLITIONAL AND SPIRITUAL AGONY ON THE CROSS.
2) WHAT WAS GOOD
We can find the answer to this by discovering how Jesus Christ, God the Father, and the apostles Peter and Paul interpreted the death of Jesus Christ. “Now my heart 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. Father, glorify your name!”
Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.” (John 12:27-28). ‘For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God.’ (1 Peter 3 :18a). ‘But God demonstrates his own love for us in this : While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Romans 5:8). ‘God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.’ (2 Corinthians 5:21).
A verse from a hymn by Mrs C. F. Alexander reinforces the fact that this Friday was GOOD FRIDAY.
There was no other good enough
To pay the price of sin;
He only could unlock the gate
Of heaven, and let us in.