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Friday, April 22, 2011

Good Friday, Remembering the Lord

1 Corinthians 11: 23 - 25, For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you: that the Lord Jesus on the same night in which He was betrayed took bread; and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, "Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me." In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me." NKJV

Good Friday is the day that Christians around the world set aside to commemorate the death of our Christ and what His sacrifice has meant to us. Jesus commands us to remember His death as we partake of Holy Communion. On this Good Friday, I am reflecting on Jesus' love, loyalty, and devotion to His heavenly Father. John tells us in chapter 3 that God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son. God loved the world, and Jesus loved His Father.

It was on Thursday evening that Judas betrayed Jesus into the hands of men. He spent the night being tormented, tortured and judged. Early on Friday, as an angry crowd was beginning to gather, the chief priests and the elders plotted the death of Jesus. They led Him before Pilate, but he could find no fault in Jesus that would justify His condemnation to death on a Roman cross. Instead, Pilate found Him innocent and with the crowd as his witness, Pilate washed his hands of this sinless man's blood. It so happened that there was a feast, and it was the custom of the governor to release one criminal to the people during this time. Pilate asked the people if they wanted Jesus or Barabbas, a notorious criminal. 

After the crowd had chosen Barabbas as the one who would be set free, Jesus was brought into the governor's palace ...perhaps a courtyard where He was surrounded by a garrison (400- 600) of soldiers. He was separated from the Jews, and the soldiers took turns spitting on Him. They beat Him with reeds and slapped His face and plucked His beard with their hands. Finally, they plaited some thorn vines together and placed them on His head as they bowed before Him and mocked Him. 

After this, they led Him to Golgotha, the place of the skull. It was there that they hung Him on a criminal's cross. Perhaps it was supposed to have been the cross of Barabbas, but now the Lamb of glory was nailed to it. The High Priest was offering the Paschal lamb somewhere in Jerusalem that day, and at the same time, Jesus, the Lamb of God was being hung upon the cross. Unlike the Paschal lamb, this Lamb (Jesus) wasn't being offered to cover the sins of the Jews for another year; He was given to take away the sins of the entire world. 

As you go through your day, take a moment occasionally and reflect on all that Jesus suffered on your behalf. There's nothing on earth that can compare to the love Jesus displayed on the first Good Friday.

It Was My Cross That He Bore,
Pastor Asa

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