Good Friday 2020
It is good Friday again! What does that mean for us? What does that mean for the world? What does that mean for God?
In certain movies there are examples of how a terrorist hijacks all forms of media to interrupt songs, news, TV shows, and internet to send a message to everyone that they are a threatening disaster. So, the intent of the madman is to create worldwide panic and dismay. What are we going to do?! A powerful man has been able to intercept all channels of communication to get the point across that this evil leader is in more control everyone and they are about to do something bad…or else! It’s kind of unfortunate that it makes for popular thrilling stories.
Now, what if we were able to do the same thing by interrupting all social media to send the message of the gospel around the world today. No threat, no scare tactic, no anxiety. We just post good news. Of course, it would be rude and self-centered to control the moment through satellite or some device. Yet, if all executives that do control Internet, phone, and other outlets of media were too bond together and have the message of the gospel sent to the world at the same time in every language, in a loving manner, with a brief announcement, would the world receive it? And if the majority received the message (!), WHO would SHOW them how to live in order to pass it on to the next generation?
Every day, not just over Easter weekend, we are the channel for our friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ. We may not have the world as our audience, but whoever is in our sphere of influence is all the world we can handle for now. We have a responsibility. We are not to be rude, controlling, or demanding. Yet, we must SEEK them, however, we cannot give them what we don’t have and don’t understand.
And…even if we SEEK them and tell them about the Lord Jesus and what He has done, we must SHOW them how to live. We must SHARE our lives as an example of the lifestyle of the gospel and not just leave it as the message of the gospel. In school we used have the day called “show and tell” that was often on a Friday. Those were “good Fridays” because we got to display something we were passionate about and most interested in. We must fuse our “go and tell” of the gospel with “show and tell.” It all started with that first “good Friday” that inspires us for all other days.
Until the end, there is always a new generation on the horizon. The parents, teachers, coaches, and mentors cannot pass on “the life” unless they see it and implement it themselves from observing others LIVE it out. We can certainly tell about the good news of Good Friday to the world, but we are called to LEAD others into a life change by watching our example. They will not simply be watching us. They will be watching us as we follow our Savior and Lord.
The death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ of Nazareth was one part of His calling. Yet, as He says just before the ascension, His followers are to Go and Make disciples in all Nations. We have labeled this the Great Commission. Interestingly, He SHARED how to do this over the last three years on earth. Half of His strategy was doing what He commanded in going around proclaiming the good news of the Kindgom of God. The other half of His strategy was the making disciples as He was going. He always had these individuals close by Him to show them how it’s done so that they could seamlessly LIVE it out to LEAD others to do the same. This means the “telling” and “showing” go together and should never be separated.
Good Friday would actually not be so good if Jesus Christ had not chosen before His death to SHARE with us how to SEEK God and people in order to LEAD them to LIVE as a new community. It was not just His death as a substitute on our behalf that was so amazing. It was the showing and telling as a lifestyle with close observers that made His death even more significant. In a way, the “work” of the cross was only one piece of beauty and accomplishment. The work of three years of sacrifice to love, guide, serve and invite others into relationship was just as beautiful and significant!
We must be willing to invite people into our lives and sacrifice our time and comfort so that the next generation can see the gospel on display in order to be duplicated. Otherwise, we have a Great Omission of all Jesus Christ intended to accomplish. We may think in terms of the Good Friday being good for us. Do we think of Good Friday being good for God? It will only be good for God if we both receive it and LIVE it. The whole world can hear the message through any form of media. Yet, will it be good in God’s eyes if they don’t change? How can they change if they have no reference to go by? While Jesus Christ knew that scripture would be recorded telling the story and providing commands, He imprinted onto others “how” to LIVE in order for us to guide the world in this same lifestyle. He knew that it would not be sufficient just to have the written recording. We must get out and go and be willing to show. We must make Good Friday good for our Lord by how we obey Him.
What Jesus Christ did for us on the cross is amazing! He died in our place! We deserve that death. Yet, He also chose to LIVE for us. That goes hand in hand with the dying. Good Friday was also about how He was willing to LIVE! Let us not forget that. Let us be inspired and passionate about how we can LIVE like Him too. We can die to ourselves and LIVE for Him and He provided a concrete example of how to do so with the intent that we would SHARE with others. So, for God’s sake, the gospel’s sake, and the goodness sake of Good Friday, show the world how to LIVE like Jesus Christ! By His Spirit we can. And for His sake and for the next generation, we must!!!