TODAY IS A GOOD DAY: WHAT DOES GOOD FRIDAY REPRESENT?
Today is a good day! It’s Friday! And it’s not just Friday; it’s Good Friday! Good Friday represents the day Jesus was crucified, died and was buried. Now, it’s not to suggest that this is the actual day He died. It simply represents it!
WHAT WERE JESUS’ FINAL WORDS BEFORE HE DIED?
As was mentioned in the previous article “The Passion of the Christ,” Jesus endured great suffering, more than we could ever fathom, in order for us to be saved from sin and eternal damnation. According to Luke 23:46 (New International Version), His final words were “Father, into Your hands I commit My Spirit.” He then breathed His last breath and died.
While Jesus was on earth, He lived as a man. In other words, although He is divine, He experienced what it’s like to be human. He entered this world by way of a natural birth. He was raised by Mary and her husband Joseph. He ate, slept, cried and got angry. He was lied on, ridiculed, mishandled and abused. Satan even tempted Him, but as Hebrews 4:15 states, Jesus still did not sin.
WHAT HAPPENS TO AN INDIVIDUAL WHEN HE OR SHE DIES?
When an individual dies, there is a separation of the body, soul and spirit. In Genesis 3:19, God told Adam that because he came from the dust, one day he would return to the dust. Ecclesiastes 12:7 (NIV) also says:
“…the dust will return to the earth, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.”
Then, the soul, which consists of one’s will, mind and emotions experiences eternal life or eternal death. Matthew 10:28 (New Living Translation) states:
“Don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot touch your soul. Fear only God, who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”
I share those scriptures to reiterate what happened to Jesus during His last moments on the cross. He left His human body and committed His Spirit back to God. He let go and died.
Jesus’s crucifixion marked the end of His work on earth, and He did a great work! Everything He did serves as examples of what we as believers are to do today. Jesus taught and preached to many. He healed the blind, deaf, mute, crippled and paralyzed. He healed those with incurable diseases and resurrected the dead. He even embraced the poor and castaways.
HOW EXACTLY DID JESUS DIE?
When Jesus was finally arrested, He didn’t put up a fight. Why? He knew it was His time to die. Therefore, as He hung on the cross, He committed His Spirit back to God the Father. In other words, Jesus CHOSE to die in that moment. Men didn’t kill Him. His enemies didn’t take Him out. Satan couldn’t even destroy Jesus.
Our pastor Apostle Ron Banks often states that if any other human being had been beaten the way Jesus was, he or she would have died before going to the cross. In fact, Jesus wasn’t just beaten, He was flogged. In other words, He was beaten with a whip containing sharp pieces of metal. So, every time the whip hit His body, it ripped His flesh. Nevertheless, despite the severe beating, He still didn’t die. Jesus said in John 10:17-18 (NLT):
“…I sacrifice My life so I may take it back again. 18 No one can take My life from Me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority to lay it down when I want to and also to take it up again….”
Just as Jesus gave up His life and committed His Spirit to God, we are to give up our sinful lives and commit our all to God. That is the greatest way in which we can show our appreciation for His sacrifice. Many of us follow rituals during this holiday season. We give up something for Lent. We hold fish frys. We preach “The Seven Last Words of Jesus” on Good Friday. We shop for the perfect Easter outfit. We go to the barber shop and hair salon. We take pictures of our children sitting on the Easter bunny’s lap, give them Easter baskets and let them participate in the annual Easter egg hunt. Finally, we fill up the church pews on Easter Sunday.
Now, I’m not criticizing said rituals. We enjoy them! They bless us! However, what matters most to God is that we surrender our lives to Him and strive daily to please Him. That is THEE greatest way we can say, “Thank You Jesus for sacrificing Your life for mine!”
THE PRAYER OF SALVATION
If you haven’t accepted Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, you can do so right now. I then encourage you to find a good Bible-believing church that will help you grow in your relationship with the Lord.
Romans 10:9 (New International Version) says, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”
Please pray the following prayer:
Dear Jesus, I come to You confessing I am a sinner in need of a Savior. I believe You shed Your blood on the cross and died for my sins, were buried and rose again so I could be free! Please forgive me for my sins and the life I have lived. I confess You Jesus as Lord and accept You as my own personal Savior. According to the Word of God, I am now saved! Hallelujah! I AM FREE!
WELCOME TO THE FAMILY OF GOD!!!!!
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