When I was a kid my church did an Easter play every year, and every year I cried during the crucifixion. When the movie Jesus of Nazareth came out I cried watching them whip Jesus, and when the Passion of the Christ came out I saw it in a theater. Watching the Passion of the Christ is incomparable to any other depiction of the suffering of Jesus I have ever seen.
A few months ago, I read the Gospel of John at one time, and I couldn’t hold back the tears. To think of the sacrifice of Jesus should always impact us. We should be moved emotionally when we think of the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Now, we understand that emotion is not the basis of our faith, but it is a part of it. When we think of the love of God for us, we should be moved. No matter how long we have walked with Him, we should never forget that it is all of grace that we are His child.
I want you to open your Bible and read the fifty-third chapter of Isaiah. Read it slowly, think about what the verses are saying, and think about what Jesus went through for you.
Isaiah 53:7 NKJV “He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, And as a sheep before its shearers is silent, So He opened not His mouth.”
Remember that during His trial, Jesus did not answer. The sinless Son of God did not defend Himself; He gave His life so that you, so that I would spend eternity with the Father. Each of us is undeserving of such grace. All of our good works being as filthy rags, being enemies of God – while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:8-11 NKJV “For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. 8 So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God. 9 But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His. 10 And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.”
Allow the words of Scripture to speak to you on this Good Friday. Take your Bible and your journal or a notepad; pray, read Scripture, and reflect. While it is good to have some guidance in the Scripture from someone else, there are times when it needs to just be us, our Bible, journal, and the Holy Spirit. Here’s what I encourage you to do today; find the time and go to a quiet spot, and read the story of redemption. Start with Isaiah 53 and then go to each of the gospels. Matthew 26-28, Mark 14-16, Luke 22-24, and John 17-21. We need to spend time in all four gospels because each one gives a different perspective on the events, and they allow us to get a more complete picture of what was taking place. After the gospels, read Paul’s explanation of the gospel in Romans 5-8. Don’t be in a hurry to read; take time, praying, and reflect as you read.
This week is a week to remember, but not only this week, but we should also remember Christ’s sacrifice for us every day. Let us remember today by spending time in the Scripture, reading them slowly, and allowing them to renew our commitment to the Lord.