A Good Friday and Easter Sunday Meditation

What is Good Friday and Easter Sunday all about?

The God of the Bible is humanity’s rightful King.
All humans, no matter what background they come from, have rebelled against Him and forsaken Him.
We deserve eternal punishment for dishonoring a King of eternal glory.

There are many ways that we humans dishonor God, whether it be through misuse of authority (power-hungry leaders, police brutality, male abuse); our sexuality (finding our identities in something other than that prescribed by God), dishonoring others (racism, bullying, slander), injustice (calling guilty people innocent and calling innocent people guilty).

Good Friday: God the Son entered human history as Jesus of Nazareth to take the punishment that was reserved for us by dying on a cross for our sins:
“But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5)

Easter Sunday: Jesus rose from the dead, demonstrating His power over sin and death:
“We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God.” (Romans 6:9-10)

God is our King and we are His subjects. We committed high treason against Him and deserve capital punishment for our crimes. But the Crown Prince Jesus came and took our punishment on our behalf and was raised from the dead. With His new life, He offers us rebels an opportunity to have our crimes pardoned and more than that, to be reconciled to our King and be elevated with the Crown Prince to a new status.

Jesus does not simply provide the means for our forgiveness, He also elevates us with Him to share His royal status.

If we accept Him as our risen Lord and Savior, we shall be united with Him in a death like his, and we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. For one who has died has been set free from sin. Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him (Romans 6:5-7). If then we agree to be reconciled to God in Christ Jesus, we must consider ourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus (Romans 6:11).

Jesus is Lord because He is our reconciled, rightful King.
Jesus is Savior because He saved us from the penalty of our sins, namely death and separation from God.

Good Friday and Easter Sunday represent the death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth, historical events that have come to be the means through which humans can be reconciled to their Creator and begin a process of moral transformation that can bring blessings and renewal to the whole world. This inner transformation and reconciled relationship to God will begin to express themselves in the way that we interact with others.

Our identities will change, our laws will change, our culture will change, and our society will change for the better, and they’re at their optimal best when we humans, through Christ Jesus, are reconnected with the God from whom all justice and righteousness flow.

3 thoughts on “A Good Friday and Easter Sunday Meditation

  1. MUSICGOON says:

    Would you say that Jesus is Lord apart from his Kingship? I see them as two different titles. However, I would even say that Jesus is Lord and Jesus is King whether or not you are saved. He can be Savior in a broad sense and Savior in a specific sense.

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    • witnesstohisglory says:

      I feel it would be somewhat strange to say that Jesus is Lord apart from His Kingship.

      Lord and King do seem to be different titles, but I feel in biblical context, they’re used almost interchangeably since they both refer to authority over something or someone. In other words, I feel “Lord” and “King” are two different ways of referring to the same thing, namely God’s authority over His creation.

      You’re right that Jesus is Lord and King whether or not you are saved. In other words, His right to rule over creation remains intact even when we refuse to submit to His authority. Our refusal to obey does not negate His authority. I apologize if I did not make that clear in my writing. What I aimed to do in saying Jesus is King is to clarify the Bible’s use of the word “Lord” in referring to Him, especially for people who are new to the Bible.

      The idea that Jesus remains Lord even when we refuse to submit to Him lies behind the Lord’s prayer where it states: “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” Jesus already reigns, but the experience of His reign has not been fully realized in Creation, especially among us humans made in His image. The presence of His reign exists, but the experience of it has not come yet.

      It would be as if you know the sun is out shining on you, but you do not feel its warmth. The inability to feel the sun’s warmth does not negate its presence.

      This idea of an authority that is incompletely realized appears to be a recurring theme throughout Scripture: there is a part in the Old Testament where God tells Samuel: “Obey the voice of the people in all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them. (1 Samuel 8:7)

      The statement: “They have rejected me from being king over them” is essentially the epitome of sin.
      I would argue that this one statement captures the entire biblical narrative.

      When the apostles discuss the lordship of Jesus, it appears that they echo the Old Testament theme of God’s kingship, so that’s what I mean when I think “Lord” and “King” are used interchangeably in biblical context. Both titles aim to point out the fact that God has a legitimate claim to authority but that authority has not been fully enforced or experienced over creation in a sense.

      Salvation is best understood in the context of Jesus restoring His rightful reign over us. It would make sense. After all, if our problem was that we rejected God from being king over us, then the solutions of salvation and repentance would mean that Jesus needed to secure the means for our reconciliation and enable us to submit ourselves under His reign.

      Following that train of thought, I agree that Jesus is Savior in a broad and specific sense. Here’s how I would flesh those terms out:

      Broad: Jesus went through the historical means by which mankind could be reconciled to God. He died on the cross for the crimes of rebels and rose from the dead to be their living intermediary. With His death and resurrection, He provided an opportunity for rebels to be reconciled to God. It would be as if He did the hard work of writing a peace treaty on our behalf with terms that are beneficial for us.

      Specific: Should rebels sign that peace treaty that Jesus provided, they are uniquely bound to Jesus in a formal covenantal relationship. The agreement between former rebels and their King is now formalized and the subject-King, slave-Lord relationship is restored.

      I appreciate the questions, brother, and I hope I explained my position well. If there are still questions, I’ll do my best to clarify my position even better.

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