What’s So Good About Friday?by James Robison
Jesus said, “There is none good except God,” so the revelation of “good” comes through the manifestation of God. We witness His goodness through the gift of His Son, whose death and resurrection we celebrate this week. The scriptures clearly proclaim that God is not only good, but He is love. Herein is love, not that we love Him, but that He first loved us. We love Him because He loves us and this love was clearly expressed through the Lamb of God who died to free us from the guilt and eternal consequences of our sins.
In a day when we face serious challenges like the economic times in which we live, disturbing criminal acts like we witnessed in Nashville, the threat of the Ukraine war becoming widespread, and so many other dark forces, we rightly ask: How can this ever work for good?
Scripture says, “All things work together for good,” not for everyone, but, “to those who love God and are called according to His purpose.” God never says, “all things are good.” Sin corrupts, and leads to death. But God is good. Love is good. All things work together for good for those who love Him because they have accepted His love into their lives. When we focus on Him and His purpose, we can be shaped by the power of His presence rather than conformed to this evil of this world. We will watch with amazement the good that can be worked during times that appear hopeless.
When we’re not centered on Him, the pressures, difficulties, and bad things add to the confusion and sense of hopelessness, because we cannot see the possibility of purpose in them. Those who don’t love God continue to make bad decisions and tend to blame bad things on Him. As a result, they never see the great heavenly Father work anything, much less all things for good.
When we remember the event that occurred on “Good Friday,” our human perspective makes us wonder how the word “good” could ever apply. Good Friday represents one of the darkest moments in human history and yet it provides the brightest light for all mankind because on Easter Sunday we celebrate the message of hope and promise through Jesus Christ. Our Redeemer lives! Our Father God made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him and no longer live for ourselves, but for Him who died and rose again on our behalf!
The first time that the death of Jesus struck a meaningful chord in my own heart, I was a young teenager. As a boy with little opportunity and encouragement, I was impacted by the love of God demonstrated through the suffering of Christ. All I had ever heard about the traits and character of Jesus was praiseworthy and admirable. I heard how Simon helped carry the cross. When I thought of Jesus stumbling beneath the weight of the cross after being beaten and weakened, tears welled up in my eyes and I thought, “I wish I could have helped carry the cross.”
I believe that desire has been somewhat fulfilled, for I have been able to take up the cross daily and follow Him by joyfully caring for others. Throughout my life, I have experienced difficult times. Without the power and strength offered through a resurrected Christ, I could have lived a life of dismal failure.
By receiving Jesus and truly falling in love with Him, I continually watch God work all difficulties and challenges for good and for His glory. Jesus truly took our sin and our shame. He took the penalty we never could have paid. It has been said that Jesus endured the anguish of hell because He loved us so much He did not want to be in heaven without us. Only God could love so much that He would give His only Son to take the pain and punishment for the sin of the world. This Jesus who died now lives to express His very nature through us. He wants to release His love, mercy, and forgiving power through every professing Christian.
It is my prayer that those who honor Him during this Easter week will honor Him every day of the year by receiving the sufficiency of His death and the forgiveness He offers at this very moment. I pray that all of us will allow His life to be expressed through us. Christ in us is truly the hope of glorifying and magnifying God as the wonderful Father that He is.
We need far more than the recognition of a holiday. We need to receive what God has offered and submit to His purpose in our lives. May the Jesus who died and was raised come alive in the hearts of all who have not yet believed and may those of us who believe become living demonstrations of the power of His death and resurrection. Those who receive the gift of Easter will witness God “working all things together for good.”