Posted in good friday, theology

Good Friday to Resurrection Sunday: The World’s Three Most Important Days

By Elizabeth Prata

Can you imagine the pit of despair the Disciples felt on Good Friday? To them it was a hellish and confusing Friday. Jesus’ separation from the Father while on the cross (Matthew 27:46) is the loneliest and most poignant moment any person ever felt in the history of the universe, bar none.

But the disciples’ sudden and unexpected separation on Friday from their spiritual Father they’d been following so hopefully for three years came upon them cruelly and brutally, throwing them all into states of panic, despair, and spiritual depression. Even though Jesus had told them ahead of time, and even though they had studied the scriptures, they didn’t understand. To them, it wasn’t Good Friday. It was just bad Friday and the seeming end of the long trail of hopes and highs they’d been experiencing for three years with Jesus in discipleship to Him. They did not know as we do, Friday’s here, but Sunday’s coming!

We worship Jesus every day. We worship and praise Jesus collectively in services on Sunday. We exalt Him once a year on Resurrection Sunday. We know Him as Resurrected King triumphant over sin and death!

His ultimate moment will be His return, when every knee shall bow and every tongue will confess (Romans 14:11, Philippians 2:10, Isaiah 45:23).

The LORD will be king over the whole earth. On that day there will be one LORD, and his name the only name.” (Zechariah 14:9)

Everyone will know that Jesus is MESSIAH! Not their spouse, not their work, not their own self. They will finally know the Resurrected Jesus is the only name. He is all names. He is the beginning and the end!

And it started with the cross on Friday.

Posted in easter, encouragement, good friday, resurrection

Good Friday to Resurrection Sunday, the world’s most important days

By Elizabeth Prata

Can you imagine the pit of despair the Disciples felt on Good Friday? To them it was a hellish and confusing Friday. Jesus’ separation from the Father while on the cross (Matthew 27:46) is the loneliest and most poignant moment any person ever felt in the history of the universe, bar none.

But the disciples’ sudden and unexpected separation on Friday from their spiritual Father they’d been following so hopefully for three years came upon them cruelly and brutally, throwing them all into states of panic, despair, and spiritual depression. Even though Jesus had told them ahead of time, and even though they had studied the scriptures, they didn’t understand. To them, it wasn’t Good Friday. It was just bad Friday and the seeming end of the long trail of hopes and highs they’d been experiencing for three years with Jesus in discipleship to Him. They did not know as we do, Friday’s here, but Sunday’s coming!

old rugged cross

We worship Jesus every day. We worship and praise Jesus collectively in services on Sunday. We exalt Him once a year on Resurrection Sunday. We know Him as Resurrected King triumphant over sin and death!

His ultimate moment will be His return, when every knee shall bow and every tongue will confess (Romans 14:11, Philippians 2:10, Isaiah 45:23).

The LORD will be king over the whole earth. On that day there will be one LORD, and his name the only name.” (Zechariah 14:9)

Everyone will know that Jesus is MESSIAH! Not their spouse, not their work, not their own self. They will finally know the Resurrected Jesus is the only name. He is all names. He is the beginning and the end!

And it started with the cross on Friday.

Posted in good friday, propitiation

Propitiation: agony, mercy, life

About 2000 years ago, my Savior was arrested and tried and executed in a most heinous and public way. Many people have written about Good Friday in more theological ways than I can. They can evoke the spiritual significance in a deeper way than I can.All I can do it share how I feel about Him, My Jesus, the Living Water.

You see, I am like a woman at the well, living her whole life as an unrepentant sinner. I even exulted in my sin, having pride that I was living a life I wanted. I lived with a man who was not my husband and believed myself coolly relevant with the times by dispensing with that old piece of paper. I was a sinner through and through and I saw nothing wrong with myself at all.

And then I met the savior. His gorgeous light immediately shamed me. I then knew how depraved I was and how much I deserved the anger of God. As the Holy Spirit grew me in sanctification, I more and more realize what a monumental and eternal thing Jesus did beginning Good Friday…or beginning three and a half years before … or beginning thirty three and a half years before … or beginning since the foundation of the world. (1 Peter 1:20).

We have always been sinners, since the Fall (Genesis 3). And God has always had a plan to redeem a polluted and depraved humanity to His clean breast since, well, always.

It involves Propitiation, my favorite word.

CARM defines it: “This means the turning away of wrath by an offering. It is similar to expiation but expiation does not carry the nuances involving wrath. For the Christian the propitiation was the shed blood of Jesus on the cross. It turned away the wrath of God so that he could pass “over the sins previously committed,” (Rom. 3:25). It was the Father who sent the Son to be the propitiation (1 John 4:10) for all (1 John 2:2).”

  • “Propitiation properly signifies the removal of wrath by the offering of a gift,” (The New Bible Dictionary).
  • “Propitiation signifies the turning away of wrath by an offering,” (Baker’s Dictionary of theology, p. 424).
  • The act of appeasing the wrath and conciliating the favor of an offended person, (dictionary.com).
  • “The act of appeasing the wrath,” (Webster’s dictionary, 1828).”

I completely deserve God’s anger, wrath, and eternal punishment, but Jesus stepped in to my place! Why? Why? How can God be that good? Why does He want us?

For His glory. The most amazing act in the universe, after Jesus taking on all God’s wrath – willingly- is God redeeming a polluted humanity to His breast. I cannot get over that and I don’t think I will ever come around to understanding it. Jesus as the propitiation …what a savior we have! I love, love, love Him!

Spurgeon said of the propitiation, on Good Friday- March 29, 1861

“First then, the text says of Christ Jesus, “WHOM GOD HAS SET FORTH TO BE A PROPITIATION THROUGH FAITH IN HIS BLOOD.”
The words, “set forth,” in the original may signify, “foreordained;” but according to eminent critics, it has also in it the idea of setting forth as well as a “foreordaining.” Barnes says, “The word properly means to place in public view; to exhibit in a conspicuous situation, as goods are exhibited or exposed for sale, or as premiums or rewards of victory were exhibited to public view in the games of the Greeks.” So has God the Father set forth, manifested, made conspicuous the Person of the Lord Jesus as the Propitiation of sin. How has He done this? He has done it first by ordaining Him in the Divine Decree as the Propitiation of sin.”

“Sinner, listen, and if you have already accepted that which the Father has revealed, let your joy become full. Why? WE SHOULD LOOK TO CHRIST, AND LOOK TO CHRIST, ALONE, AS THE PROPITIATION FOR OUR SINS, AND TAKE CARE THAT OUR FAITH IS SIMPLE, AND FIXED SOLELY ON HIS PRECIOUS BLOOD.”

He did it, not us! Spurgeon goes on,

“Now, my Hearers, the sins of God’s people are taken away by the blood of Christ, and not by any repentance of their own. I say that our sense of need does not take away our guilt, nor help to take it away; but the blood, the blood, the blood alone, pure and unmixed, has forever washed the people of God, and made them whiter than snow! So, poor Heart, if your soul is as hard as a nether millstone; if your conscience seems to be seared by long habits of sin; if you cannot force tears from your eyes, and scarcely can get a groan from your heart—yet you are groaning today because you cannot groan, weeping because you cannot weep, and sorrowing because you cannot sorrow—hear you, then, this Gospel message! God the Father has set Christ forth to be your Propitiation! Not your tender conscience; not your groans; not your sense of need; not your law-work; not your deep experience! He is enough without any of these—have faith in His blood and you are saved!”

Friday is here. The agony, the shame, the forsaking. The loneliest moment in the universe for all time, when Jesus said “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”” (Matthew 27:46)

Our spotless lamb, never having been apart from the Father in fellowship and sweet unity, separated from Him during that awful period when He became sin for our sakes.

“This day is called Good Friday—may it be a good Friday to some of you! Perhaps I have some here to whom I have preached these last seven years, and yet you have remained unsaved. I am clear of your blood if you had only heard but this one morning sermon, for God witnesses I know not how to put the plan of salvation more clearly than I have done! “God has set forth Christ to be a propitiation through His blood.” I bid you look to Christ bleeding, to Christ sweating drops of blood, Christ scourged, Christ nailed to the Cross, and if you believe in Christ’s blood, He is the Propitiation of your sins. But I can do no more than this; it is mine to preach, it is mine to pray, and mine to plead. Oh may God the Holy Spirit give you Grace to receive, to accept, to yield to this blessed proclamation of free mercy!” ~Charles Spurgeon

What a glorious Savior we have! He reigns forever!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted in good friday, it's friday but sunday's coming, resurrection

Good Friday

How can I write a Good Friday message? The enormity of what Jesus did on that Friday long ago is too huge, the depth of my gratitude too great. How great the Father’s love for us! I can’t express it. I can only shake, and quake, and hang my head in shame at the part my sin played in that awful day, and then raise my head again and look toward Him in heaven rejoicing that HE LIVES!

He could have spoken us out of existence, and yet, He did not. He came down from lofty heights, “He took up our infirmities and carried our diseases.” (Mt 8:17). He taught, healed, ministered, rebuked, and drew men unto His very breast, with open arms and joy.

“And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,” (Revelation 1:5)

For a long time I didn’t understand His love, that He knew me even when I didn’t know Him. That He sought me personally, knowing my name and having formed a plan for my life. I certainly didn’t understand the blood and His death on the cross. I refused to understand about sin.

But once I did, the floodgates opened. As each day goes by the power of our God’s sacrifice of Himself on the cross amazes me more. And the resurrection, victory over sin, death, and life is the final ending to an age-long battle. What peace there is in Jesus. What unfolding love and eternal joy. It is indescribable. And all because of Good Friday, and its finishing event, Resurrection Sunday.

“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe.”  (Ephesians 1:18-19)

You can lay down your weary arms and conclude your battle with sin. It’s what is making you so tired, you know. The struggle against that hole in your heart where Jesus should be, to fill it with something, anything, is tiring. We fill it with sin, but that hole should be filled with His love and His purpose for you. But first comes recognition of your sins, that you think, say, and do things that displease God. Ask Him to forgive those. Confess them. And submit to Him knowing His plan for your life is wonderful and beyond anything we could ever dream up. Today He died for you, for us. He hung there in agonizing pain, to pay the penalty for sin according to God’s justice. The spotless lamb was chosen and sacrificed. Now all you need to do is join Him in His kingdom by confessing and repenting! Wouldn’t you like to experience the real meaning of Easter with the Holy Spirit dwelling inside you, prompting you to new understandings and greater wonder of our precious Jesus? Hurry! Friday’s here, but Sunday’s coming!
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