“Holy Week” or “Passion Week” refers to the events in the life of Jesus a week before he is resurrected from the dead. Here are my reflections on each day as we remember the life, death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I won’t be going into a historical or a Biblical study of each day as there are many resources you can find regarding that. These are merely my personal reflections. A great place to start learning more about Good Friday can be found here: Justin Taylor, Holy Week, Day 6: Friday
9 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.Philippians 2:9-11 (ESV)
This evening we remember as Christians, the day Jesus was crucified. Some of us may have sat through countless Good Friday worship services and countless Easter Sundays and this season may feel like a routine. But what we must never ever forget is that if Jesus is the way, everything that we believe and follow hinges on this weekend and these three things.
- His identity
- His death
- His resurrection
And no other weekend, in all of time from history past to now and forever, is more important than remembering what happened this very weekend all those years ago on Calvary. Without the reality of who Jesus is and his death on the cross and his resurrection, we are truly fools, truly most to be pitied. And the world may say that we are already fools “for the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” (1 Corinthians 1:18)
The words of Jesus, his promises and his claims, everything hinges on his death and resurrection to be true. Jesus, the way, the truth, and the life, and his claims of being God are validated and vindicated by his death and resurrection.
Jesus was the only way to our salvation because of His identity. Jesus was fully God and fully man. It is because of who Jesus is that his death has any meaning.
In Philippians 2:6-7, Paul says about Jesus, “though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.”
Jesus was fully God and fully man. This is significant because God alone could have filled the chasm that our sin and rebellion had created. And he was also fully man to fully take our place. If we offered up our lives and died infinite deaths, we could not atone for our sins. And that is why hell is real.
Hell is living in eternal judgment. You would think after some point in eternity, we would be punished long enough to have paid for the penalties of sin and rebellion and enter heaven. But no, sin has eternally separated us from God. It was irreparable, irreversible, unrectifiable. We were hopeless. We talk about a God-sized hole in our hearts that only God can fill. But no, it was much worse than that.
We were in a God-sized pit that only God could come and rescue.
And God is not something we can grasp. The fact that he would become a man, it was entirely for our benefit. For our good and our faith. God could have reconciled us to him in so many ways, He is God! But for him to become a man, for God to become incarnate, that is how much God loves us.
Knowing that we could never grasp him, he became someone we could grasp. It was for our sake that he became a man.
And so, God is not a force, or karma or dark matter holding together all the molecules in the universe. God is a personable God who really cares for us; who truly loves us. And it was His love that led God to create us in the first place.
The all-powerful, all-knowing, all-present God knew that if he created man, we would sin. He knew all the sin, all the destruction, all the pain and suffering, all the sorrow and wickedness would happen. And yet he created us. Because He created us with redemption in mind.
For his glory and our good, before the creation of this world, God planned to die for us.
And it is at the right time that Christ died for us.
If you are not a Christian today, I implore you to weigh this message seriously upon your heart and mind and heed these words. Jesus came to save you from the God-sized pit. He who is fully God and fully man, fully knows you and he fully loves you. Confess your sins and put your faith and trust in Christ. He came that you might have eternal life and life to the full.
And if you are a Christian, what may seem like a reminder is actually the only reason for our faith. May these words bring life to us all.
Jesus was the only way to our salvation because of His death. By His death on the cross, Jesus fully obeyed God. Christ’s humility is not found in him becoming a man. It’s not found in him leaving heaven and eternity to enter earth, bound by space and time. Christ’s humility is not found in him losing something or becoming lesser than what he is. His humility is found in his obedience.
And his obedience is perfect. Or in other words, his obedience is holy. It was his perfect obedience that allows his death be our salvation. And this perfect obedience was something only Jesus could fulfill.
Jesus was the ultimate perfect spotless sacrificial lamb. It was by his perfect and holy blood that purged our sins. His death alone could cover the guilt of sin. He fulfilled all the requirements of the law. He was sinless and holy.
The way to salvation truly is exclusive. The world today is very against this notion of exclusivity but the Gospel is very clear. But truly there is no other way! Jesus is the only one who could fulfill the wrath of God. Jesus’ death on the cross is the only way to salvation.
In being fully God and fully man, Christ has taken fully the judgment and wrath of God in our place. His death on the cross was the greatest act of love displayed in all history. His death on the cross was what all the sacrifices and laws and commandments of the old testament were alluding to. His death on the cross fulfilled all the law and the prophets. And his death on the cross is the foundation on which all of Christianity now stands.
Jesus was the only way to our salvation because His resurrection fully glorified God. Friday is coming for all of us. What I mean by that is, death is our end. And after death there is judgment. This is something we all need to accept. But we call today Good Friday. Why would we call a day remembering death and suffering good? Because glory to God, Sunday is coming. Jesus rose again from the dead on the third day.
He is risen. Hallelujah! He is risen!
The reason today is called “Good” Friday is because out of His death came the salvation of the world. The reason today is called “Good” Friday is because on the third day He rose again from the dead. Jesus Christ was fully God and fully man. He obeyed God fully even unto death. And by his resurrection, God was fully glorified. And so, our faith, all that we believe, hinges on this weekend. And with hope and reverence and awe, we remember Jesus’ death, his sacrifice.