Good + Friday. How can those two words even appear next to each other? The whole idea of Good Friday goodness seems a total contradiction. On that first “good” Friday, Jesus suffered humiliation, shame and a torturous death. On that “good” Friday those who loved Him had no choice but to helplessly watch through their agony, grief, helplessness, and hopelessness. What could possibly be GOOD about that Good Friday? Even the seemingly indifferent Roman soldiers guarding Jesus on the cross were struck with the distinct possibility that they had just committed the horrific act of killing the Son of God. If you were there would you have called that Friday “good”? I doubt it.
Old Testament writers described Jesus’ Good Friday’s horror centuries before it occurred. In Psalm 22:14-18 (written in 1000 B.C.), David gave the grim physical details of Jesus’ crucifixion. Isaiah clearly described that same horror 700 years before it actually happened.
Good Friday Goodness
Isaiah, however, saw more than suffering. He also saw the goodness of that agonizing Friday. What goodness? The incredible victory made possible by Jesus’ suffering. In Isaiah 52:13-53:12, the prophet folds his description of Jesus’ suffering between two literary bookends- the first prophesies Jesus’ exaltation; the second promises His victory:
- Isaiah 52:13 prophesies that Jesus will prosper, be exalted, and silence even kings.
- Isaiah 53:1-3 describes Jesus’ excruciating suffering.
- Isaiah 53:4-12 promises Jesus’victory.
Isaiah truly saw the goodness of Good Friday.
Jesus, in the midst of His own horror, saw the goodness as well. He knew what He was accomplishing, and it brought Him joy. (Hebrews 12:2)
We also can see Good Friday’s goodness. We can grasp the reality that Jesus’ sacrificial suffering gifted us with the freedom to draw near to God.
What’s Good About Good Friday?
On GOOD Friday, Jesus bought us access to life. On GOOD Friday He proved beyond doubt God’s goodness.
Sometimes – this time – goodness costs dearly. On Good Friday, Jesus paid the price that bought our eligibility to enter heaven. On Good Friday, God let us know that to Him Good Friday’s goodness was well worth its cost.
Good Friday Goodness: What’s GOOD About Good Friday?
© Lynne Fox, 2017, rev. 2018