What's so GOOD about Good Friday?

Many years ago, Bob and I took out a personal loan through his parents. We signed a contract and followed a loan repayment schedule. After several years of diligently paying on that loan each month, Bob’s dad handed him an envelope. He pulled out the contents and read the words that were hand written on the contract: “Debt canceled. April 18, 2000”. His parents’ names were signed beneath it. With gratitude and tears, we accepted their loan forgiveness. They had sacrificed something valuable so that we could be free from our debt. We still have that paper and we have never forgotten what that debt forgiveness feels like nor have we forgotten the spiritual applications it has.

You see – each one of us comes with a spiritual debt contract. Each. One. Of. Us. If you’re a human, your DNA says you have one. We arrive on Day 1 with a figurative suitcase full of human nature and sin nature. Don’t believe me? What is one of the first words a child speaks? “No!” We want to do it our way. We want what we want. We come saddled with a debt we can’t pay and a suitcase we can’t get rid of…on our own.

Left to myself, I can’t fix my pursuit of my own wants and desires.  Left to myself, I will build my own kingdom (with a population of one) and left to myself I will rely on my own abilities. I’ve tried it. It doesn’t end well…ever. Jesus knew there was no chance I could fix myself or mend my separation from God because of my sin. So out of His great love and mercy…He did it for me. He left His rightful place in heaven and walked among His creation. He traded in the robes of a King for the flesh of a servant and exchanged His royal crown for a crown of thorns. He carried my sin all the way to the cross and allowed Himself to be nailed there as the payment for my debt and declared for all eternity that “It is finished.” (John 19:30)

THAT is why Good Friday is good. It marks the day Jesus purchased my freedom. It’s the knowledge and understanding that I have the one true God who stepped forward to pay a debt on my behalf that I am powerless to pay on my own. My grief on Friday is that my sin put Him there. My joy is that He freed me from my bondage, purchased my life for me, and set me free.

But, my story – our story- doesn’t end on Friday. We know that on Sunday the tomb is empty. He conquered death. Our crucified Messiah resurrected and left the tomb. And I was resurrected with Him. My debt is paid. The day I acknowledged my sin and accepted Christ as my Messiah is the day my debt contract read: “Debt cancelled. July 31, 1973.”

If you have accepted Christ as your Messiah, you know you have a cancelled debt and have been brought into a rich life with Christ. If you are searching and have not yet made that decision, know that He loves you and wants to cancel your debt, too. My prayer is that this be the day your debt contract reads: “Debt cancelled…”.

“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)

“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.” (Galatians 2:20)

“When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions, having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.  When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him. (Colossians 2:13-15)

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Traci - April 18th, 2023 at 8:37am

Thank you for this wonderful reminder!