It is logical for us to believe that the question God asks is also formulated in an act—in the cross. What God asks of the believer is the following three-fold inquiry: (1) Look at the cross where My Son was crucified for your sins; what is your response to it? (2) I have included you in the death of Christ; you were nailed with Him there on the cross; what is your answer to this? and (3) Having been given such a wonderful Savior, what is to be your attitude to Him hereafter?
~ Watchman Nee, Gleanings in the Fields of Boaz
How do we answer those questions?
Today, the Christian community commemorates Good Friday. It seems odd that today, when we remember the most horrific crime in the history of human kind, where Christ was crucified for our sin, that we would call the day “good.” Origins of the term refer more to the fact that it was a holy day, a day of Christ’s sacrifice, yet the day of our redemption.
We saw this centuries before the death of Christ when Joseph said you his brothers, “what you meant for harm, God mean’t for good.” (paraphrased from Genesis 50:20).
The religious leaders of the day thought that they would end Christ’s radical ministry and threat to their control. What they did instead was accomplish exactly what God had planned.
Jesus knew from the beginning that he would endure the pain and suffering of the cross. He knew from the beginning that most of his closest followers would abandon him there.
And yet, he came.
That’s a good thing.
Depth of mercy! Can there be
Mercy still reserved for me?
Can my God His wrath forbear,
Me, the chief of sinners, spare?
I have long withstood His grace,
Long provoked Him to His face,
Would not hearken to His calls,
Grieved Him by a thousand falls.
There for me the Savior stands,
Shows His wounds and spreads His hands.
God is love! I know, I feel;
Jesus weeps and loves me still.
Now incline me to repent,
Let me now my sins lament,
Now my foul revolt deplore,
Weep, believe, and sin no more.
~ Charles Wesley, 1740