Words of Worth

Good Friday Silence

April 14, 2017

“Silence is golden,” so they say, but I say, “Silence is often misunderstood.” When I was in elementary school, my neighborhood friends and I would observe three hours of silence, from noon-3 p.m., as a means of reflecting on Jesus’ crucifixion. If memory serves me well, the hours felt more like punishment than pondering the meaning of the cross. Our hours of silence felt like an eternity and were riddled with distractions of hunger pangs (“Can we at least eat silently?”), clock watching (“Is it over yet?”), and superior pious thoughts (“Wow! We’re a bunch of holy kids giving up play time for prayer time.”). Suffice it to say, we completely misunderstood the point of our silence as one way to survey the wondrous cross.

As I read Luke 24 today, (the Gospel of Luke gives the most comprehensive details of Jesus’ crucifixion), I was reminded that the purpose of Jesus’ life was to die an agonizing death on the cross in order to pay the penalty for our sins. As a child I focused on the “wrong” aspects of the crucifixion by dwelling on the curious angles of Christ’s suffering without realizing the agony and abandonment Jesus suffered, and the significance of God’s love for a sinful people.

Thankfully, years out from childhood, I have come to know Jesus on a personal level. So on this Good Friday, as I silently observe the wondrous cross, I do so with clear understanding that Jesus died the death that I should have died and in so doing restored me to God. He not only died the death I should have died, He lived the life I should be living but am unable to live. He lived a life of perfect obedience to God.

Good Friday Silence is golden and so are the streets I will one day walk in Heaven because Jesus lived, died, and rose again for the sins of mankind.

4Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, 46 and said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, 47 and that repentance for the forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.

Luke 24: 45-47

When I Survey the Wondrous Cross

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