Remembering Good Friday…Every Day
The crucifixion of King Jesus Christ is the purpose for His incarnation (Jn 1:14; 19:1–30). In the eternal purpose of God, our Lord Jesus Christ came into the world to save His people from their sins (Mt 1:21). He bore our sins in His body on the cross, and by His wounds we are healed (Is 53:5; 1 Pet 2:24). Healed from what?
The original sin of the first man, Adam, was imputed to all people ever conceived (Rom 5:12). The very nature of every member of Adam’s race is sin (Eph 2:3). As children of wrath, being children of the devil (1 Jn 3:10), sinners are subject to death (Rom 6:23; 1 Cor 15:22).
Every soul is conceived stillborn, meaning every child in the womb is shapen in iniquity (Ps 51:5). Sin is lawlessness (1 Jn 3:4); as such, we have an inherited sin from Adam that condemns us, as guilty before God (Jn 3:18). The natural outworking of one’s sin nature is sin in practice, and all have sinned (Rom 3:23; 5:12). Paul wrote, “In Adam, all die (1 Cor 15:22a).”
The stillborn soul is conceived, dead in sin (Eph 2:1) and dead to God (Rom 6:13), performing dead works (Is 64:6; Heb 6:1). Being dead to God means the natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, having not the Spirit (Rom 8:9) and because they are spiritually appraised (1 Cor 2:14). He looks to the cross of Jesus Christ and judges it to be foolishness (1 Cor 1:18). In this, the wisdom of the world is matched against the wisdom of God; and God’s ways are higher than man’s ways (Is 55:9).
When wicked sinners put to death the Prince of life (Acts 3:15), it did not dawn on them that Jesus of Nazareth, the scorned “King of the Jews” (Jn 19:3), was truly the Son of God (Mt 27:54). In their selfish, sinful way, they murdered the Messiah (Dan 9:25–26), who was like us, yet without sin (Heb 4:15).
Remarkably, all of this was recorded in Tanak. The Law, the prophets, and the writings all prophesied of this suffering Servant, who would be pierced through for our transgressions (Is 53:5). He who knew no sin would be made sin for us (2 Cor 5:21). He Himself is the propitiation for our sins (Rom 3:25; 1 Jn 2:2; 4:10), that is, the sins of His people from the whole world (Heb 2:17), from every nation, tribe, and tongue (Rev 5:9; 7:9).
What men meant for evil, on that first “Good Friday,” God meant for good. God makes all things work together for good, for those who love Him and who are called according to His purpose (Rom 8:28). The death of Christ made the way for elect sinners to receive eternal life, by faith (Jn 5:24), having received the gift of God (Rom 6:23). Obviously, this is the “Good” in Good Friday.
Like the criminal on the cross next to Jesus, who scorned Him at first, we are regenerated and converted in a twinkling of an eye. Helpless (Rom 5:6), hopeless (Eph 2:12), haters of God (Rom 1:30) waiting for death — we can only be amazed by the mercy of God (Rom 9:15). The Innocent One turns to the guilty and says, “Today, you shall be with me in Paradise (Lk 23:43).” This is the judgment of the King of kings upon His earthly throne…the cruel cross. His declaration is the sovereign Word of justification, for this guilty thief and those like him.
While men were judging the King of glory for blasphemy (His claim to be God [Jn 8:58]), He was forgiving the sins of a lawless man. Of course, only God has the authority to forgive sins (Mk 2:7), and this authority had been the Son of man’s rule on earth (Mt 9:6; 28:18). Do you realize the true identity of the man upon the cross? Do you understand the meaning of His death?
Without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sins (Heb 9:22). With the blood of Jesus, the blood of the new and everlasting covenant (1 Cor 11:25), there is forgiveness of sins for many (Mt 26:28; Eph 1:7). The Prince and Savior has granted repentance to Israel and the forgiveness of sins (Acts 5:31; 11:18). Blessed are those whose lawless deeds have been forgiven (Rom 4:7).
Forgiveness of sins is good news to be proclaimed to all nations (Mt 24:14; Mk 16:15; Lk 24:47; Eph 1:7). This is why we preach Christ and Him crucified (1 Cor 1:23), even determining to know nothing else except Jesus Christ and Him crucified (1 Cor 2:2), saying to the daughter of Zion, “Lo, your salvation comes; behold His reward is with Him, and His recompense before him (Is 62:11).” This is true for His first advent and for His second coming.
The King of glory has come in humility, on the foal of a donkey (Zech 9:9; Mt 21:5). As the mediator between God and men (1 Tim 2:5), it is His precious blood of the covenant of grace (Heb 9:15; 12:24; 1 Pet 1:19) that has made peace with God (Rom 5:1). The suffering Servant is the King of glory!
Do you believe the words I have written for you, my friend? They are written, so that you may know of the importance of the events of that day so long ago. If you do believe in Jesus and the efficacy of His death — an atonement for sin — then rejoice in so great a salvation!
God has given His elect, redeemed people His Holy Spirit, as a gift (Acts 2:38; 10:45; Rom 5:5). As many as receive Him, He has given them the right to be called, “children of God” (Jn 1:12–13; 1 Jn 3:1). The children of God rejoice in the love of their Father, who was pleased to send His only begotten Son from heaven to earth (Jn 3:16), at the fullness of time, to be born of a woman, to be born under the Law (Gal 4:4), to give Himself a ransom for many (Mt 20:28; Mk 10:45), to give Himself for His bride, the church (Eph 5:25).
Many are called, but few are chosen to receive this redemption (Mt 20:28; Mk 10:45), by grace and through faith (Eph 2:8–9). Those who receive Christ, of God’s doing (1 Cor 1:30; 2 Cor 1:21), now have a Gospel to proclaim (Col 1:23, 28), that is, good news of a Good Friday, which we remember every day.
Spokane Valley, Washington
June 5, 2022