Good evening again. As you all know, I am Pastor Robert McConkey. This evening's message is Why Good Friday Is Bittersweet. As you all know, this is Good Friday, and there are probably some of you asking, Why is this Friday called Good Friday?" What was so good about what happened to Jesus? Wasn't He betrayed by one of his disciples to the Temple authorities, and denied 3 times by the other at His trial? And when He was taken before Pontius Pilate, didn't many of His own people call for His death by crucifixion? Wasn't He afterward crucified on the cross? And He didn't finally die on the cross?"
My answer is yes to all of them. All these things did happen, and they were terrible to see and hear, to all those who both knew and loved Him then. But it is important to understand that He allowed these things to happen to Him voluntarily. He voluntarily allowed Himself to betrayed by Judas, when He could have at any time stopped it from happening. He could have prevented Peter, from denying Him 3 times, by telling him, that during His trial, that there will be those that outside of where He would be taken to stand trail, who would confront him about his relationship with Him, and that no matter what, admit that he is His disciple. But instead He let it happen, simply because despite his boasts, Peter would react differently, out fear for his life. He also knew that later he would return to Him, after He rose the dead. As for those that called for Him to be crucified, He chose not to use His power as One being fully God as well as fully human, to punish them at that moment. He also voluntarily allowed Himself to be crucified, and didn't as one of the Jewish leaders said, "Come down off the cross and save Yourself?" Instead He remained on the cross, even to the point of death.
If now you are asking, why, then my answer is for all humanity, first for His own people--the Jews, because He came to earth as a Jew, or as Paul said, "a minister to the Circumcision," and then for the for the nations or Gentiles--us and the rest of the human race. As to why He did for them and us, it is because as Paul put "for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God," His people, and everyone else in the world, and to pay the debt that their our sin incurred, that none of us could pay.
So there you have it. I hope that answers yours questions. Now we can begin with part 1 of this message.
I say part 1, because this Good Friday I will not at this time, be able to give it in entirety. There is too much to cover this evening, and also because, I had to begin by answering in advance these specific questions as briefly as I could. Any let me begin saying, that what I just now told is why this Friday is called Good Friday, because
of the fact that He paid for the sins of His own people and then for us.
However then, His disciples didn't at first think that what happened to Him was good either, They watched Him be betrayed in the Garden, and they fled. Then some that remained watched Him be nailed to the cross after he was scourged and forced to carry His cross up the hill to be crucified, and then die on the cross. Finally those that remained watched Him be taken down, wrapped and buried in the tomb of Joseph's, and for a while it seemed that was the end for them. But all this happened for a GOOD reason--for the salvation of His people and for us as I said.
Since it is getting to be 8:00 pm where I am I will continue tomorrow with the rest of part 1 of this message. Good night and God bless you all.