Good Friday is Good Because God is Good

You may use this for your Facebook cover photo as a springboard to share the Good News of Jesus Christ. 

(Article originally published on Good Friday 2015)

The definition of good means to be morally excellent; righteous. However, we often misuse the word "good" to describe music we like, activities we enjoy and entertainment that amuses. Though music, activities and entertainment might delight our fancies, if they are absent of God, they are absent of good. Many things I enjoy are fun, lively and jubilant, but they cannot be good unless the focus of all these things magnifies the LORD my God.

Not to say it's a sin, or in any way wrong for people to enjoy music, arts, etc., that is absent of praise and glory to God (though it is a sin to enjoy anything or anyone who mocks righteousness and promotes ungodliness). But as God's dearly beloved children, let's call things as they actually are. Let us not call anything good, awesome, holy, etc., unless it pertains to the only one who is all these things: God Almighty. These attributes are exclusive to God.

"And Jesus said to him, 'Why do you call Me good? No one is good except God alone.

as it is written:
      'None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All
      have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good,
      not even one.'

"And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved"
~Mark 10:18, Romans 3:10-12, Ephesians 2:1-5 (ESV)

On this day more than 2,000 years ago, the Son of God breathed His last after He was betrayed by one of his own, abandoned by His closest friends, brutally beaten by envious men, falsely accused, publicly humiliated and jeered at; despised more than a murderer, nailed to a cross between two thieves, further ridiculed and tormented while in excruciating pain; died a sinners death, and was buried in a borrowed tomb because He had no earthly possessions of His own—and this is what God calls good.

By all accounts, this day was a grief-stricken day for the Lord Jesus. But He endured the agony and the fullest extent of God's wrath, not because it was a pleasant experience for Him, but because it was good for those He came to save.

Disrobing Himself of His glory, Jesus, the Son of God descended from Heaven, came to earth as a helpless babe, born of a virgin, alone fulfilled all the righteous commandments of God, qualifying Himself as the one and only perfect sacrifice for the sins of those He came to save.

Jesus Christ was the only human being who lived a sinless life, yet died a sinners death. As it is written, "For while we were yet still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one would scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare to die—but God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by His blood, much more shall we be saved by Him from the wrath of God." (Romans 5:6-9, ESV)

This is love.

This is good.

How do people respond to God's amazing grace and mercy poured out to us through the crushing of His one and only Son? The three most common responses are to:
  1. Repent and receive this good news, that is, the Gospel of God's grace;
  2. Utterly reject God's grace;
  3. Merely profess with our lips that we've repented and received God's grace through Jesus Christ, yet our lives prove that we're just another Judas.
These last two responses, are not good. And those who respond this way, are to be the most pitied in all creation.

"I have been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus; I am a member of his visible Church; I sit at the communion table: all these are so many kisses of my lips. Am I sincere in them? If not, I am a base traitor. Do I live in the world as carelessly as others do, and yet make a profession of being a follower of Jesus? Then I must expose religion to ridicule, and lead men to speak evil of the holy name by which I am called. Surely if I act thus inconsistently I am a Judas..."
~Charles  Spurgeon
(excerpt from Evening Devotional, March 25)

Examine yourselves with Scripture to see if you are in the faith (2 Cor 13:5). And never do the most hateful thing to those you love by confirming their salvation when there is no biblical proof they are truly saved, but there is clear evidence they are merely a Judas. Rather, do the most loving thing and urge them to examine themselves with Scripture, urge them to repent, to turn from their sinful lifestyle, and cry out to God Almighty to save them.

Today, if you hear the goodness of God's grace through faith in Jesus Christ, do not harden your hearts, and do not lie to yourself about where you truly stand before the sight of God Almighty. Repent and believe the Gospel.

If you know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, then share the good news of Jesus Christ today. As you rejoice in this great love God has lavished on you (1 John 3:1-3), tell others why this day is called Good Friday.

"Behold, the LORD's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save, or His ear dull, that it cannot hear; but your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you so that He does not hear.

"The LORD saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no justice. He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no one to intercede; then His own arm brought Him salvation, and His righteousness upheld Him.

" 'And a Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who turn from transgression,' declares the LORD."
~Isaiah 59:1-2, 16, 20 (ESV)