Good Friday is the most solemn day of the year. It is the day we remember the crucifixion of Jesus. While the event was necessary to prove the power of Christ over death and ultimately resulted in His resurrection, there is still no more ominous moment in history. Never before, never since, and never again will such a tragedy occur. We remember this day because the very creation of God, acting in the freewill given to them by their Creator, nailed His Son to a cross and watched Him die. Jesus willingly allowed them to take His life from Him so that He might be the salvation of us all.
No matter how great the ending of the story, it doesn’t excuse the senseless violence executed against a perfect and innocent man. Some hated Him out of pride, some from jealousy, and most because He exposed the selfish lives they were living. The theme continues today. People reject Christ because they believe they are “self-made”. Instead of being thankful to God for the blessings of their life, they puff up in pride and revel in their success. People are jealous of their “stuff” and keep God at a distance in order to protect what’s theirs. Many others are repulsed by what Jesus reveals about their lives. Their deepest secrets are put on display because nothing is hidden from the light of His Holiness.
Professed Christians are not immune to the pride, jealousy, or fear of being revealed. We like to make certain everyone knows of our achievements, even though we know they would have been impossible if not for the power of Jesus. We grow jealous of those who don’t follow Christ because we perceive that they have more and enjoy life to a greater degree than we do. Every day we are faced with our true selves as revealed by the Holy Spirit. We have to make the choice to surrender our will to God or live for ourselves (a more palatable phrasing we use so we don’t have to verbalize the fact we are choosing to live for Satan).
Jesus died a horrific death so that each of us could live the life we were lovingly crafted to live. He could have left us all to our fate, destined to spend eternity tormented by Satan and separated from God. In His love for us, He could not bear to leave us without a means of salvation. Even though He knew what awaited Him, He chose to move forward with the plan; all because of His love for us.
The question each of us must ask as we remember His death is, “Is the life we are living worth His dying?” Are we honoring His sacrifice by living each day in obedience to Him? Do we put His mission ahead of our own? Are we showing love to others, just as He showed love towards us? Are we prideful and jealous, or humble and serving? No one should have to go through what Jesus did on our behalf. It is the greatest act of love ever known. As you consider the nails being driven through His flesh, consider if your life is being lived in a manner that is worthy of His sacrifice for you.