Holy Week Devotional - Good Friday

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Reminder, we will be gathering for our Good Friday Tenebrae service this evening at 6pm in Burriss Hall. In honor of today being Good Friday, we would like to invite you to spend today fasting. Our goal for this fast is that we as a church family might take the time to remember and reflect on what Jesus did, in real time and space, and to let hunger help remind us of his suffering and sacrifice. We will break fast together this evening as we observe communion, and share a meal afterwards. We look forward to worshiping with you this evening!


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During Holy Week we will be emailing daily devotionals that reflect on what happened each day during Holy Week. We hope and pray the Lord uses these devotionals, and additional resources, to encourage you and grow you in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

These devotionals will be archived on our website, and can accessed here.

Please feel free to share any and all of these devotionals!


What Happened on Good Friday?

Suggested Readings

Jesus is betrayed by Judas and arrested by the authorities (could be late Thursday night or after midnight/early Friday morning)
Matthew 26:47-56; Mark 14:43-52; Luke 22:47-53; John 18:2-12

Jesus has an informal hearing before Annas (former high priest and Caiaphas’s father-in-law)
Matthew 26:57, 59-68; Mark 14:53, 55-65; Luke 22:63-71

As predicted, Peter denies Jesus and the rooster crows
Matthew 26:58, 69-75; Mark 14:54, 66-72; Luke 22:54b-62; John 18:15-18, 25-27

After sunrise on Friday the final consultation of the full Sanhedrin condemns Jesus to death and sends him to Pontius Pilate
Matthew 27:1-2; Mark 15:1

Judas changes his mind, returns the silver, and hangs himself
Matthew 27:3-10

Pilate questions Jesus and sends him to Herod Antipas
Matthew 27:11-14; Mark 15:2-5; Luke 23:1-7; John 18:28-38

Herod questions Jesus and sends him back to Pilate
Luke 23:8-12

Jesus appears before Pilate a second time and is condemned to die
Matthew 27:15-26; Mark 15:6-15; Luke 23:13-25; John 18:38b-19:16

Jesus is mocked and marched to Golgotha
Matthew 27:27-34; Mark 15:16-23; Luke 23:26-49; John 19:17

Jesus is crucified between two thieves
Matthew 27:35-44; Mark 15:24-32; Luke 23:33-43; John 19:18-27

Jesus breathes his last
Matthew 27:45-56; Mark 15:33-41; Luke 23:44-49; John 19:28-37

Joseph of Arimathea buries Jesus in a new tomb
Matthew 27:57-61; Mark 15:42-47; Luke 23:50-56; John 19:38-42

Devotional

Good Friday is the day in Holy Week that we look back to the events of with both sadness and gladness. If we attempt to put ourselves in the places of the disciples on that day, we would consider no part of it to be good. Whether you look at it from the perspective of Peter who, as Jesus foretold, denied Christ three times (Luke 22:54-62), or maybe the perspective of John, who stood at the foot of the cross with Jesus’s mother as they wept when Jesus took his last breath (John 19:30). Take any of the twelve aside that day and not a single one would claim that it was “good.”

For followers of Christ, that day was filled with the deepest grief imaginable. This man whom you believed came to usher in the Kingdom of God is now hanging on the cross of criminals. Just five days ago, He entered into Jerusalem on a donkey symbolizing that this Kingdom had arrived, and now He dons a crown of thorns as everyone, who cheered Him as He entered Jerusalem earlier in the week, mock the very thought of such a King. Yet, Christians today deem this day as the Friday that was and is “good”, because we know what Jesus knew as He hung from the cross: everything that has transpired in all of creation has brought us to this moment. Jesus would finally begin to fulfill the promise of Genesis 3:15 and bring us back into a standing with God to where He may look upon His creation again and see all that He has redeemed and say “It is very good” (Genesis 1:31; Colossians. 1:15).

As we read through the passion narrative, it is helpful to understand the part we play as human beings. Arguably the most telling story of the human condition is the scene of Barabbas and Jesus told by Matthew (Matthew 27:15-26). Here, we see that when left to the desires of our flesh we choose evil over innocence every time. If we are honest with ourselves when we are asked what we should do with Jesus when He isn’t fitting our man-made image of what a King looks like we yell with our hearts, “Crucify Him!” That may seem a bit extreme, but if we don’t view our sin as equal to that of the crowds’ sin in this scene, then we have missed the point of the cross completely and this Friday is in fact not “good.”

But those who believe upon Christ do not lose heart in this moment. We rejoice in this moment, because when Jesus said “it is finished”, we know that every moment in human history had led up to this point and in three days He would “start” something that would change the course of history going forward. Not only would it change history, but it would change hearts of stone to hearts of flesh, it would change our cry from “crucify Him” to “have mercy on me!”

Reflection

  1. What is “good” about this day?

  2. Read Genesis 1:31 and then Genesis 3:15. How does Jesus fulfill both of these Scriptures?

  3. Why did Jesus have to die on the cross?

Worship Through Song

Stricken, Smitten, and Afflicted

Verse 1
Stricken smitten and afflicted
See Him dying on the tree
'Tis the Christ by man rejected
Yes my soul 'tis He 'tis He
He's the long expected Prophet David's Son
Yet David's Lord
By His Son God now has spoken
He's the true and faithful Word

Verse 2
Tell me you who hear Him groaning
Was there ever grief like His
Friends in fear His cause disowning
Foes insulting His distress
Many hands were raised to wound Him
None would interpose to save
But the deepest stroke that pierced Him
Was the stroke that justice gave

Verse 3
You who think of sin but lightly
Nor suppose the evil great
Here may view its nature rightly
Here its guilt may estimate
Mark the sacrifice appointed
See who bears the awful load
He's the Word the Lord's Anointed
Son of Man and Son of God

Verse 4
Here we have a firm foundation
Here the refuge of the lost
Christ's the Rock of our salvation
His the name of which we boast
Lamb of God for sinners
Wounded sacrifice to cancel guilt
None shall ever be confounded
Who on Him their hope have built


Additional Resources

Video: Holy Week - Good Friday

Filmed in conjunction with the book The Final Days of Jesus, this video features short explanations from and interviews with historian Paul Maier and New Testament scholar Andreas Köstenberger, looking at the origin, object, and purpose of Roman crucifixion, along with one difference in emphasis between the synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) and John on suffering and glory.

Holy Week Spotify Playlist

We created a Spotify playlist with music focused on Holy Week. We hope these songs will help you reflect on this momentous week, and help prepare your heart as we reflect on and celebrate these events.