What’s So Good About Good Friday?

Good Friday is celebrated on the day that Jesus was crucified. Most people are familiar with the story enough to know that Jesus’ death by crucifixion was a brutal, bloody mess. Jesus was betrayed by his friend Judas, abandoned and denied by the rest of his disciples, put unfairly on trial in the middle of the night, beaten and mocked, whipped, forced to carry his own cross to the place of execution, was nailed through his hands and feet to the cross, and hung up in public to be ridiculed and die in front of everyone. What in the world is so good about that?

Good Friday is not good because of what Jesus suffered. What makes Good Friday good is why Jesus suffered and what his suffering accomplished. Jesus’ death was more than just the average death. Something of cosmic significance took place that fateful day.

Jesus suffered and died to pay for the sins of the world. He acted as a sacrifice on behalf of sinful people like you and I. He shed his blood in our place, and died the death we all deserve. In that way, as an innocent substitute, Jesus paid the price for sin and as a result, anyone who trusts that his death has paid for their sin is seen as holy and acceptable in the eyes of God. In other words, Jesus died to make a way for sinners to be right with God. Romans 5:6-9 puts it this way:

[6] For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. [7] For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die—[8] but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. [9] Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.

So what makes Good Friday good is that, because of Jesus death, it is possible for sinners to be forgiven by God, made right with him, and given eternal life. That is really, really good news!

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