Redeemer Family, During holy week, our pastors and other leaders are sharing reflections about the week. What was Jesus doing each day? And how does this show more about who He is and what He accomplished for us in His death and resurrection? Follow along each day. - Pastor Kevin
Day 6: Friday "How Good is Good Friday?" by Pastor Barry Pett
1 Peter 2:24
He himself bore our sin in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness.
Let’s face it, most people treat Good Friday with about the same regard as they do Presidents Day. If you don’t get off work, it’s pretty much just another day. And even if you do get off work, Good Friday is likely only good because you get a long weekend to rest or play. So the two questions I want to explore are: Why is Good Friday Good? And secondly, why do most people not treat it as very good at all?
To answer these questions, we must first understand the inverse principle of good news: good news is only good to the degree that bad news is really bad. If you got a bee sting and I happened to have an ointment at my desk that immediately removed the pain and swelling, that would be moderately of good news, mainly because a bee sting isn’t all that bad (assuming, of course, you are not highly allergic to bee stings!). But imagine we are on a trip together in Australia, and you get bitten by an Inland Taipan snake which will kill you in less than 30 minutes. But, fortunately for you, being the super prepared person that I am, I just so happen to have the anti-venom in my backpack that saves your life. Now that would be much better news, wouldn’t it?
The truth is, most of us don’t get too excited about Good Friday because we tend to see our sin problem a lot more like a bee sting than a lethal bite from an Inland Taipan. But if scripture is true, then our sin looks a lot more like a strike from that lethal snake. (See Romans 3:23). How bad is our sin problem? Read Romans 1:18-32 and Romans 3:9-18. It’s that bad!
When we begin to see our sin this way, 1 Peter 2:24 starts to become amazingly good news, and Good Friday starts looking spectacular. “He himself bore our sin in his body.” Jesus didn’t bring us the anti-venom for sin; he was the anti-venom! As fully God and fully man, he was the only one capable of paying the penalty for our sin because he was the only one that sin had not bitten. For reasons beyond our capacity to understand, he traded places with us! 2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “For our sake he (God) made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” He drank the full cup of our sin’s venom so that we might die to sin rather than from sin! That is really, really good news!
So that leads to the question asked in the title of this reflection, How Good is Good Friday to you? I encourage all of you to come to our Good Friday Service tonight. In this service, we allow scripture itself to tell us the story of just how bad our sin problem is, and how utterly amazing God’s love for us is, “that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us!” And if you think that is really good news, just wait for Sunday…the news gets even better!