Good Friday

May 3, 2012
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“And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication. They will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for him as one grieves for a firstborn son.”

Nearly 2,000 years ago today, Jesus Christ was crucified. He was born so that He could die. It was the only way that we could be saved from our sins. But He didn’t just die; He suffered immensely beforehand, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

“Now Jesus stood before the governor; and the governor asked him, ‘Are you the King of the Jews?’ and Jesus said, ‘You have said so.’”


After Pilat handed Jesus over to the people to be crucified, the soldiers gave Him a half-death flogging, that is, being whipped one less time than it takes to kill. These weren’t just normal whips either. They were called a “Cat of Nine Tails” and had shards of glass and fragments of bone sewn into them. The whips were so heavy that the soldiers had to have certain weight and height qualifications to even have the ability to flick it. They then put a crown of thick, woven thorn vines on His head. Imagine, taking a rose stem and shoving it as hard as you could against your forehead. The thorns on the crown were much sharper and sturdier than a rose’s. Then, they drove nails that were several inches long into His wrists. When the Romans crucified most criminals, they only tied the prisoner’s arms to the cross. They only nailed the criminal to a cross if the soldiers wanted to be extra cruel. At the time, crucifixion was the most painful form of execution.

“Peter declared to Him, ‘Though they all fall away because of you, I will never fall away.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Truly, I say to you, this very night, before the cock crows, you will deny Me three times.’”


But, before all of this even happened, Jesus was emotionally hurt as well. He was betrayed by one of His own disciples, Judas, who had turned Him over to the Pharisees for 30 pieces of silver. When the soldiers appeared in the Garden of Gethsemane, all of Jesus’s disciples fled in fear. In fact, they were so terrified that when the soldiers grabbed them, the disciples literally jumped out of their clothes to get away. When Jesus was taken away to be tried, Peter decided to follow with the crowd. But while he was trying to hide amongst the people, some of them recognized him. They asked, “Weren’t you one of His disciples?” and Peter denied that he even knew Jesus three times, just as He had predicted the night before. When the realization hit Peter, he ran away for the shame of what he had done.

“When the centurion and those who were with him, keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were filled with awe, and said, ‘Truly this was the Son of God!’”


Perhaps the most painful of all of Jesus’s suffering was His spiritual suffering. The Bible says that He drank the world’s sin. That means that the guilt from all persons past, present, and future from the five-year-old who told a lie to the mass murderer who killed 10 people was laid on Jesus all at once. Because of all the sin that Jesus held, God could no longer stand the sight of His own son and God turned away from Him for a few brief seconds. Jesus cried in agony, “Eloi, Eloi, Lama Sabachthani? My God! My God! Why have you forsaken Me?!” and He breathed His last and died.

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His one and only Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, shall not perish, but have everlasting life.”


All of this in an act of love. How could someone so pure love someone so dirty enough to endure all of that… willingly? We cannot understand this love because it is God’s love. When Christ died, the veil between God and man was torn, literally. In the Temple, there was a room that was blocked off by a veil several feet tall and several inches thick. Only the high priest was allowed to enter this room, once a year on the Day of Atonement. The moment Christ died, this veil was torn completely in two from top to bottom. Man could now go to God directly by placing their faith in Jesus Christ and repenting from their sins. But this story is not over yet… (to be continued Sunday)





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Taphephobia This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
May 18, 2012 at 10:37 pm
I love that you wrote this just because it is so important that people know how extreme the torture is Jesus had to undergo. I mean, yeah people have watched Passion of the Christ but it doesn't really register to them. Jesus did nothing wrong. Yet there were enough people against him to get him beaten, tortured, crucified. It's just unbelievably important to know the sacrifice Christ layed down for us.
 
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