Most of us are aware that Good Friday commemorates the crucifixion and death of Jesus. So, shouldn’t we be mourning rather than celebrating? Shouldn’t we be sad and full of sorrow rather than glad and full of joy? This was something I had a hard time understanding when I was younger. But, as I’ve matured in my faith I’ve come to realize that Good Friday is good specifically because it includes all of those emotions.
I have seen the movie “The Passion of the Christ” numerous times and I have yet to watch it without weeping. The images of the only perfect, sinless human being brutally beaten, mocked and painfully executed do induce much-warranted grief. After all, it was my sin, my inability to obey God’s laws, that put him there. I was hopeless until Jesus hung on that cross. We all were. Which, means, we’re all to blame. So, we should feel that sorrow. It’s what 2 Corinthians 7:10 refers to as godly sorrow.
However, the fact that Jesus loved me so much he willingly submitted to such horror also fills me with godly joy and gratefulness. The best part is, it was for all of us. Even the worst of us. It was for the criminal who hung on the cross next to him. It was for the Apostle Paul who, before he was the Apostle, was Saul, the ultimate persecutor of those who loved and followed Jesus. It was for me. And, it was for you. There is no greater love than what God has already shown to each and every one of us and that, coupled with the promise of death’s ultimate defeat that we’ll celebrate on Easter Sunday, is what makes Good Friday so good.