Day 5 - "Good" Friday
“So he handed Jesus over to them to be crucified. They took Jesus and He went out bearing His own cross to the place called the Place of a Skull, which is called in Hebrew, Golgotha. There they crucified Him...” --John 19:16-18
Traditionally, Christians call the day when Jesus Christ gave up His life on the cross, Good Friday. It has always troubled me that we would label such a tragic day as good, but when I consider how important this part of the story is in relation to what the world calls “good” I can never leave this element out of a message about who Jesus was.
No other belief system or religion in the world has its central figure sacrificing himself for the salvation of all of mankind. This is a critical difference between Christianity and everything else: Jesus Christ, the Son of God, out of love for all of us, willingly laid down His life so that we could be free from the punishment of sin, and we cannot divorce the birth and life of Christ from the death He suffered for us.
More than other belief systems, nothing the world offers compares to this kind of love, because the love that Christ demonstrated on the cross comes with no strings attached; he offers it as a free gift that you can accept or reject. Everything this world calls “good” asks for something in return: if you scratch my back I’ll scratch yours. But Jesus gave everything asking for nothing...that is good.
Read Romans 5:8-9. What does this kind of love tell you about God?