Posted by: Ed | April 2, 2010

HOLY WEEK – Good Friday

I’ve always found it ironic that this day is called “Good” Friday. There are other names for it, but I think “Good Friday” is perfect… and ironic. From the point of view of the first group of people who had placed their faith in Jesus, there was nothing GOOD about “Good Friday.” That was for later.

Remember that the way that Christ followers have traditionally celebrated Holy Week is to try and discipline oneself to stay in the moment, to not flip to the last page to see that the hero does win in the end. Keep in mind that Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane and even on the cross, experienced the agony of the moment, even though He knew and had told His followers that He would rise victoriously.

On this Friday, let’s remember some of the moments that changed everything.
➢ As you go to bed on Thursday remember that Jesus was arrested late Thursday night / Friday morning after an intense wrestling with God that ended with “not my will but thine”
➢ When you awake, think about Jesus being shuffled around Jerusalem in various trials in which He was mocked, spit upon, roughed up.
➢ 9:00 Jesus was nailed to the cross – asking the Father to forgive His crucifiers. (Mark 15:25 “the third hour” is 9:00 a.m.)
➢ Noon The cry of dereliction – “My God, My God, Why have You forsaken me?” (Mark 15:33-34)
➢ 3:00 Jesus cries, It is Finished (tetelestai – paid in full) and gives up His life. (John 19:30)
➢ Jesus’ thrashed body is unfastened from the cross and put in a Garden Tomb.

READING
: I’m going to paste it on to the post this time. It is copied from Sacred Space.
John 18:12,17,22-23,33-38,19:1-2, 17-19, 28-30, 40
So the soldiers, their officer, and the Jewish police arrested Jesus and bound him. The woman said to Peter, ‘You are not also one of this man’s disciples, are you?’ He said, ‘I am not.’ When he had said this, one of the police standing nearby struck Jesus on the face, saying, ‘Is that how you answer the high priest?’ Jesus answered, ‘If I have spoken wrongly, testify to the wrong. But if I have spoken rightly, why do you strike me?’
Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, ‘Are you the King of the Jews?’ Jesus answered, ‘Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?’ Pilate replied, ‘I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?’ Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.’ Pilate asked him, ‘So you are a king?’ Jesus answered, ‘You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.’ Pilate asked him, ‘What is truth?’
After he had said this, he went out to the Jews again and told them, ‘I find no case against him.
Then Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged. And the soldiers wove a crown of thorns and put it on his head, and they dressed him in a purple robe. and carrying the cross by himself, he went out to what is called The Place of the Skull, which in Hebrew is called Golgotha. There they crucified him, and with him two others, one on either side, with Jesus between them. Pilate also had an inscription written and put on the cross. It read, ‘Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.’
After this, when Jesus knew that all was now finished, he said (in order to fulfill the scripture), ‘I am thirsty.’ A jar full of sour wine was standing there. So they put a sponge full of the wine on a branch of hyssop and held it to his mouth. When Jesus had received the wine, he said, ‘It is finished.’ Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. They took the body of Jesus and wrapped it with the spices in linen cloths, according to the burial custom of the Jews.

You may also want to read – Psalm 22, Psalm 88, Isaiah 53

Take a moment to simply give thanks.
– Give thanks for God’s indescribable love.
– Give thanks for God’s justice
– Praise God for His truth and His goodness! See Psalm 85:10
– You might want to sing one a praise song about the cross. If you want to go old school and if you know the tune, my favorite is by Charles Wesley:
And can it be that I should gain
An interest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain—
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

He left His Father’s throne above
So free, so infinite His grace—
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam’s helpless race:
’Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!
’Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!

I hope you can make it to a Good Friday Service tomorrow. Journey services are at 5:30 & 7:00. Click here for details.

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Responses

  1. how beautiful and true..May God bless your service tonight that every ear would hear and every heart would bow and give God the glory for dieing on the cross..Amazing Love that God gives us all..

  2. I kept thinking of another song that I think perfectly captures the dereliction of Jesus on the cross- it’s an art song by Samuel Barber called “The Crucifixion” from a cycle called “Hermit Songs.” It is slow and contempletive, allowing your imagination to sit in that place; I recommend it for anyone who may be looking for something different to facilitate worship and meditation.


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