Promises Veiled by Darkness (365 Days of Daring Faith – DAY 85)
John 19:30 (NLT)
When Jesus had tasted it [a sponge of sour wine], he said, “It is finished!” Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
Good Friday is the day the world came to a screeching halt. Someone had entered the world as the highly anticipated Messiah and had exited in a horrifying, back-breaking, crushing death. Some in the world had probably seen crucifixions before. But none had been seen quite like this one. The darkness that enclosed this day was mild compared to the promises that Jesus had coming.
When Jesus said “it is finished”, He signified that He had completed the task for which God the Father had sent Him to the world to do. The prophecies that had been foretold were now accomplished. The Lamb of God had been sacrificed to take away the sins of the whole world, and it was done. The storm was over. The cup He had asked the Father to remove from Him was drunk. Because He drunk it, bitter and biting as it was, we are able to experience the brilliance of the cross. In our sad human condition, we insist that we can be our own gods, but our purity and power is obsolete without Christ on the cross.
The horror of Good Friday is filled with promises. The death of Jesus Christ promises new life, hope, peace, joy, everlasting access to God the Father, love, and a perfect home called Heaven. In His death, He promised a brighter day to come for the world. When the veil tore in the Temple and the earthquake shook the region, Jesus’ promises of salvation and forgiveness were fulfilled. Good Friday is not about us trying to get right with God, it is about us embracing the promises that God has to offer.
The cross is not just a symbol of Christianity. It is the answer to all the tragedy and trouble that exists in the world. It is the solution to the multiplicity of problems we face. It is the embodiment of peace that we crave and soulish joy that we desperately yearn for. In the middle of whatever darkness you’re fighting through right now, don’t give up. At the end of your road of darkness is a burst of light. Promises are often veiled behind closed doors, cracked mirrors, and broken souls. It is in this manner that Jesus came to die so that we could live.
“The dripping blood our only drink,
The bloody flesh our only food:
In spite of which we like to think
That we are sound, substantial flesh and blood–
Again, in spite of that, we call this Friday good.”
— T.S. Eliot