When contemplating Good Friday, I must say that it interests me that it doesn’t carry more weight for the believer. For those of you that may not be versed in the meaning behind Good Friday, it is traditionally celebrated as the day that Jesus Christ was crucified. Possibly next to His resurrection the following Sunday, this no doubt is the most pivotal moment in a biblical history. After all, if Christ didn’t die we’d all still be bound to the consequences of our sin. Not only that but we’d be permanently out of fellowship with the one true God, which is the essence of Hell itself.
this no doubt is the most pivotal moment in a biblical history.
Seriously meditate on that last point. Then ask yourself the question “why does it not carry more significance in Christian culture?” I’ll admit foremost that I’m not one that typically celebrates holidays. I would be the guy in the second part of Romans 14:5 “another man considers every day alike”. However, when assessing culture at large but especially “church” culture certain things strike me as odd. For instance, why the grandeur and pomp of Christmas but not Good Friday? Is it possible that it is much easier to think of a savior being born rather than a savior having to die? Is it possible that it is much more appealing to those remnants of the heathen mind that all believers possess, to meditate on an innocent child being brought into the world and the celebration surrounding (Luk. 2:13-15) it rather than the gruesome and lonesome nature of the cross?
“why does it not carry more significance in Christian culture?”
Indeed, I think it is and I believe that those facts must indicate something to us about ourselves. The reality is that Jesus Christ was born to die. And not just that but so is everyone that truly names Jesus Christ as Lord. Christmas only carries significance because of Good Friday. Just as your birth only carries significance if you too have a Good Friday moment. Not that I’m advocating going and getting crucified. Rather, your life only carries the impact that your daily death brings it (1 Cor. 15:31). Death to sin. Death to how you feel like living versus how you ought to live. Death to how you want to respond versus how you are commanded to respond. Death to your doubts, fears, insecurities, ambitions, pride, insufficiencies, inadequacies, etc. YOU MUST DIE! How’s that for gruesome?
In addition, just as with Christ, most of your “dying” will happen alone in regard to those around you. It will happen in the moments in between the grandeur of Sunday services, youth groups, Bible studies, etc. It will happen out of sight of your leaders, mentors, friends and family. Indeed it will be a lonely death. In those moments at times you will feel forsaken by God Himself (Mat. 27:46).
However, just as with Jesus Christ…Sunday always comes. Assuredly, because we are born again and have the Spirit of the Living God inside of us (Rom. 5:5) “resurrection” comes. The continuing of life where death once was. What once was dead now is resurrected as something new. New attitudes, perceptions and goals. Not because you’ve “turned over a new leaf”. No rather it’s because God has quickened your heart and you simply respond, like a fish to water, to the love of God. See this is what makes Good Friday “good”. Jesus being brought back to life, after having laid down His life out of love, because of the love the Father had for Him. The Father would not see Him forsaken. So I pray that you celebrate this Good Friday with a glorious death on your mind and the thought of how do you model Christ in your daily struggle (Rom. 8:5-13).
Wendell Cole - 3/31/2017