DEAR REV. GRAHAM: Why is the day on which Jesus died called “Good Friday”? I don’t see anything good about it, to be honest.
DEAR J.W.: From one perspective, you’re right. There certainly doesn’t seem to be anything good about that last Friday, when Jesus was condemned to die on a cruel Roman cross. “When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him there, along with the criminals - one on his right, the other on his left” (Luke 23:33).
But what took place on that hill outside Jerusalem turned out to be the greatest event in human history (along with Christ’s resurrection three days later). The reason is because Jesus’ death wasn’t a tragic mistake or an unexpected accident, it was part of the eternal plan of God for our good. Jesus was the perfect, sinless Son of God, but on the cross all our sins were transferred to Him, and He became the final sacrifice for our sins. As the Bible says, “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us” (1 John 3:16).
If Jesus had never gone to the cross, you and I would have no hope - no hope for forgiveness, and no hope of ever being in God’s presence forever. But because He died for us, we do have hope - hope for today, and hope for eternity.
Is this hope living in your heart? As we remember Jesus’ death on this special day, may it truly become your “Good Friday,” as you turn to Jesus and by faith trust Him as your Savior and Lord. This is the Good News of Good Friday, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
Write to Billy Graham in care of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C. 28201 or visit the website at billygraham.org
MovieStyle, Pages 32 on 04/18/2014
Print Headline: ON CHRISTIANITY