Jesus Is: Week 2 - Day 5
Lord, help me recognize that Good Friday is not like just any day, but a special one that has a lasting influence on my life. Amen
Read: Luke 23:44-47 (NIV)
“It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last. The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.”
This Scripture triggers fond childhood memories of the Easter season for me. The community I grew up in set aside “Good Friday” as a special day. The whole town shut down between 12 noon and 3 so the churches could have special services to commemorate Christ’s death on the cross. The focus for these three hours was on Christ and not much else. We have lost much of that sense of reverence for the day. I am saddened that it has become a day much like any other without thinking of the agony that Jesus went through so that my sins could be forgiven.
Carefully reread today’s Scripture and look at the events. Think about how the followers must have felt when it turned totally dark throughout the land. The darkness had to dampen their spirits and cause them to lose hope. Jesus was dying on the cross and it didn’t make sense.
For us, on this side of the cross, we can see the positives in this Scripture. The curtain separating people from access to the holy of holies was torn from TOP to BOTTOM giving access to God. Without Jesus going through this very dark time we would be lost. But, because of it, we are able to come before the throne of God, perfectly clean, washed in his blood. Proclaim him as the Savior he is and for the work he accomplished on the cross for all believers!.
As you go through this day, spend some time thinking about the lasting influence of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross for your life. Read through the Easter passages (Matthew 27:11-66; Mark 15; Luke 22:66- 23:56; John 18 and 19) and meditate on what Christ has done for you. Praise Jesus Christ for his willingness to go through the agony of the Cross so you can commune with God without any curtain blocking your access. Don’t let this day be like any other for you because it isn’t, and remember, “Sunday’s coming.”
God, I praise you because “You loved the world so much that you gave your one and only Son so that whoever believes in him may not be lost but have eternal life.” (paraphrased John 3:16). In his name, Amen.