Good Friday – 2017

April 14, 2017  

Matthew 27:45-53

Darkness covered the whole land. Which was odd because it was the middle of the day.
Jesus cried out “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
Even his words were dark…
Jesus felt forsaken. Renounced. Abandoned.

The darkness was for us.

His words still ring with agony. We hear the despair. We hear his suffering.
And then we know that despair ourselves, we suffer—because we know this all happened for us.

The sins of the world were on his shoulders. The sins of the world brought darkness, an all-encompassing darkness. A darkness that screamed for light.
God saw the world living in darkness and brought Jesus to the darkness to be the light.

People heard Jesus cry out. People knew he suffered. People struggled to help him, offering a sponge soaked in wine to wet his lips. But they couldn’t stop his pain. They could not end his suffering.

He cried out again, again with a loud voice.
Then he breathed his last. He entered the darkness.
For us he died.

And the earth shook. The curtain in the temple was torn, ripping from top to bottom what had, until that moment, separated all but the most holy from coming near the sign of God’s covenant with God’s people.
God’s promise, God’s covenant, was to be with the people of Israel, to protect them, to love them, to be their God forever.

But then darkness fell, Jesus died, the earth shook and a new covenant was born.
This new covenant was with all people. It was a new promise. For God so loved the world…

For God so loved the world that God gave God’s only Son, so that everyone who believed, everyone who believes in him might not perish but have eternal life.

This is the light of Christ. This is the light that shatters the darkness. The darkness cannot overcome it.

Darkness fell because of us, because of the darkness that lives in human hearts. Jesus cried out into the darkness of Good Friday.
His pain was ours. His despair was ours. He carried his pain and despair for us, so that we would never know the agony of being forsaken. He died in order to free us from the darkness of death.

We re-member the death of Jesus today. Our sacrificial lamb.
We relive the darkness.

But then, we know, there was light.

Amen.