Good Friday 2010 and another Holy Week moves towards the drama of the Cross. Each year we re-enact that event, a very public execution of One who was guilt of no sin; but took upon Himself the sins of the whole world for all time until time is no more. Increasingly, however, Good Friday is being pushed to the sidelines by spring breaks, by work that never stops, by an overly sensitive political correctness that declares Good Friday should not have any special status. A whole lot of places will give no pause nor participation in Good Friday.
Christians are sometimes called the Easter People, and correctly. The Resurrection of Jesus Christ transformed first a bunch of rag tag, awkward disciples into world-changers boldly proclaiming the gospel. Men who went into hiding on that Friday evening, fearful and confused. Men who would ultimately take up crosses of their own to proclaim the incredible truth that God so loved the world, that His Son died to redeem that world. The Church, empowered by the Holy Spirit, literally turned their world upset down.
But without Good Friday, there is no Easter. Without the realization of sin’s deadly bondage and Christ’s act as Liberating King, wiping away our sin with his death on the Cross–Easter would be just another rite of spring.
It is precisely because of its emphasis on our sin that many people would just as soon not bother with Good Friday. Scott McKnight has noted that contemporary Americans have no concept of personal sin. At best they admit to shame for what we as humans have done to one another and our planet. But sin – we’ll nobody’s perfect and I’m not really a bad person.
It’s not just a secularized culture that has pushed the observance of Good Friday to optional status. It is the human belief that sin is not deadly and that repentance is optional.
Maybe that’s the reason we must observe Good Friday. To keep an essential truth alive – that all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory.