Day 47

Final Judgment and Joyous Restoration (Good Friday)

from the Lent 2017: You Are Mine reading plan


Isaiah 66:1-24, Matthew 27:32-50

BY Amanda Bible Williams

Text: Isaiah 66:1-24, Matthew 27:32-50

It feels counterintuitive to call this day good. “Good Friday,” we say, but for a long time I could not understand why. How is the murder of the world’s only sinless person—the only truly, wholly good human—good?

In a very real sense, it was awful. And not just awful, but evil. The dark hearts of men put Jesus to death, causing Him to suffer and mocking Him at each step. It was the height of injustice, a banner day for cruelty. But it was not the end of the story.

In his response to today’s reading over at our brother site, He Reads Truth, author Barnabas Piper explains the paradox this way:

It was the darkest of days, the most unjust and evil of days. Yet it was good—good for you and for me and every other person who has ever lived. For through the evil, God brought life and hope to the world.

“Isaiah 66 describes God comforting His people like a mother. He promises to wrap them in His arms and bring them peace and joy. He promises they will flourish like grass and that peace will flow like a river.

“How? By way of Good Friday—a perfect sacrifice to satisfy God’s need for justice. Through the evil committed against Jesus came all our joy. We have peace. We can flourish. There is no distance between us and God. He wraps us up in His arms like a mother embraces her children.”

Yes, the darkness of this day is real, and it is painful. It should cause us to wince, to mourn, to grow quiet as we gaze soberly upon the wounded Christ hanging on His cross. It should cause us to repent of our sin—the sin He carried and suffered for in our place. But it should also cause us to worship. It is by His wounds that we are healed (Isaiah 53:5). It is His suffering that brought us peace (Isaiah 66:12).

Good Friday was the day the promised Messiah secured salvation for sinners. It was the day God’s holy and just wrath against sin was satisfied by the sinless sacrifice of His Son. It was the day the curtain of separation from God was torn so that all could enter in.  

Yes, this day is good. Thanks be to God.

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Post Comments (50)

50 thoughts on "Final Judgment and Joyous Restoration (Good Friday)"

  1. Joanna says:

    Thank you, Jesus. There is no other love like yours.

  2. CC says:

    This is honestly the first time I’ve done a study leading up to Easter (and actually stuck with it!) and I am SO thankful for this SRT study. Going into this weekend and on this Good Friday, I’m able to look back on Isaiah and now at Matthew and have a greater understanding of what Jesus did for us. Since the moment sin entered the world, we’ve been running away from Him, rejecting Him, rebelling against Him. Yet, He STILL decided to send His Son so that we could be in relationship with Him, so we wouldn’t have to pay the penalty for our sins, so we could bring Him the glory He deserves! And all of this has really brought me to a point of desiring other people to know Him too! My prayer for all of us today is that we have opportunities this weekend to introduce others to our Jesus so they can also experience a love unlike any other!

    1. Zoe says:

      Thank you for your post and prayers!

    2. Jody Heavenrich Hensley says:

      LOve this thanks for sharing.

  3. Ann says:

    Third Day’s song runs through my head…”He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our sins, the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him…and by His wounds, by His wounds WE ARE HEALED”…and that is the good that comes from this Friday, that we are saved…

  4. Diane Huntsman says:

    Every Good Friday I try to “do my part” to really experience all that I think I should today.. attend church, what the passion of the Christ, bring my thoughts into submission as to what Jesus really endured.. I think sometimes I’m looking for an emotional experience to draw me closer to Him.. although these things aren’t bad, I have to ask myself if I’m trying to work to make me more holy instead of ponder His holiness.. it’s kinda always my mentality “what’s in it for me” even when I’m celebrating Him.. I need to admit this so I can prayerfully move past the me to get to the Him.. yes He died for me, yes He loves me, but He is the focus and that focus will naturally change me instead of me trying to change me by doing all the “right” things..this probably doesn’t make a lick of sense to the person reading this, but in short I want pure motives in all I do, especially pertaining to my walk with Jesus and I want my attention set on Him alone not what I can get from Him… I pray we all can worship Him today for who He is and what He has done and look forward to an eternity spent in His presence!

    1. Evie says:

      Diane, I totally get you. Every Easter I feel like I need to do more liturgical things to set these days apart, to give significance to the greatest event in human history and in our spiritual lives. But then it becomes about me, how I experience this, how I feel etc and how people see me. You make sense, and I struggle with it too. This Good Friday I decided to fast my social media (other than SRT of course :P), everything that connects me to the outside world i cut off, so that I can truly focus on Him, and actually it was harder than I thought. He brought me to repentance once again and the cross brought me to a place of quiet peace once again. May he embrace you like a mother embraces a child and bring you into his presence today.

      1. Diane Huntsman says:

        Evie! Thank you for this!! I pray He meets you like never before as you have chosen to forsake your normalcy for intimacy with Him.. oh how He loves you!

    2. Ami says:

      I totally understand what you mean and this is something I struggle with, as well. I need to prayerfully ask God to show me when I am wrong and when my heart isn’t pure. I tend to focus on myself and how others perceive me or how I’m feeling instead of putting my focus on Him and letting the pieces come together.

    3. Zoe says:

      I know EXACTLY what you mean! All too well!

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