Good Friday and Seven Witnesses

Central,

I pray that you will have a Good Friday!

Following Jesus’ betrayal, arrest, desertion, false trials, denial, condemnation, beatings and mockery, Jesus was required to carry his cross to “The Place of the Skull,” where he was crucified with two other prisoners. How can the day Jesus was crucified be called GOOD FRIDAY? On the cross Jesus does for his friends what they cannot do for themselves.

When Jesus made the journey to the cross he did what no one else could do, or would ever need to do again. He did battle with the forces of evil and emerged victorious. He bore our pains and carried our sorrows. He was wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquities. He defeated death itself by death. His death was not just an example of sacrificial love. The death of Jesus on the Cross was a singular and unrepeatable act for the whole world. On the cross the pain, guilt, shame and fear of the whole world was gathered.

The story of Good Friday is either the most important thing in the world or it is scandalous nonsense. There is no middle way. We cannot help but tell the story of Good Friday! We are Jesus’ forgiven friends! Jesus has paid the price, he dealt with evil, he defeated everything that separates us from God. Words cannot even begin to describe the depth, height, width and breadth of Jesus’ love for you and me. On the Cross Jesus took all your sin, sorrow, and suffering. And that is why we sing, “What a Friend we have in Jesus.”

I hope you will join me at 7:00PM on Friday night for our service of light and darkness. Seven friends of Jesus will share their stories. Come and be blessed by the witness of Jack Orth, Sarah Perkins, Chris Dorff, Nicholas Goodwin, Shelby Novotny, Jenn Cira and Julie Haugen as they respond to Jesus’ last words from the Cross.

Paul