“Good Friday”

BC Good Friday

Good Friday

On this “Good Friday” I am reflecting on what my evening might be like if I was a follower of Jesus on that Friday nearly 2000 years ago. If today had been the day he was crucified, it would have been nearly 6 hours ago that I watched him breathe his last breath. Scripture makes it clear that the disciples did not know that he had to die and were not expecting it, even though Jesus had told them several times, they resisted it and did not understand it. When it happened their whole perception of who Jesus claimed to be was shattered.

If I were in that moment I would be in denial, expecting any second

to wake up from the nightmare, to hear someone declare: “he’s still alive, we only thought he was dead, but when we took down the cross he was still alive.” I would be replaying the crucifixion in my mind trying to imagine every possible way he might still be alive. But now six hours into my grief, the denial would be weakening. Once the tomb was sealed by Roman soldiers the finality would be setting in.

Everything Jesus ever told me would be in question. Could I believe even one thing he had told me? How could I be duped so badly? Look how much time I have wasted following an idea, a dream, a false hope. Now that Jesus is dead, nothing makes sense. What am I going to do now? Life has no meaning. People will think I have been such a fool. Obviously, he was just a man like any other. Not the Son of God, not deity, not the Messiah, not my Lord.

Tonight I am also pondering why God allowed his disciples to despair so many days before raising Christ from the dead. It seems cruel to let them wallow in such doubt, such grief, when he could easily solve the problem. But any sooner and people would question whether or not he had really died. Several days from death a body starts to stink. No matter how strong your denial, the nauseating reality of decay overpowers any hope you might have. Those days Jesus’ body was in the grave was the death of hope. No one can hope in this life alone and not be disappointed. No one can hope in any one man, even if that man was supposedly “the Messiah”. The death of Jesus’ proved that hope in a man is futile because men die, bodies rot.

As a Christian, I have anchored my hope in the historical reality of the resurrection of Christ. By coming back from the dead, Jesus proved that he was indeed who he claimed to be: the Son of God, the Messiah, my Lord, victor over death, my Savior. The resurrection of Christ is particularly significant if you stop to reflect on the impact and magnitude of his death.

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