Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Good Friday 2011

We've had a Good Friday service each year since we came to New Hope. Every year it's one of the ones I remember the most. Bunny encouraged me to put the text and the video links up here so others could see what we experienced. I can tell you that reading the Scripture from Isaiah is one of the hardest things I ever have to do. It just kills me to read that.

We began after I briefly explained the service and how we'd move from a look at sin to God's remedy for it in Christ Jesus. I prayed and then we played the video "Oh My God" - it starts out slow but the snapshots of how life is for so many is just profoundly affecting to me. Christ died so that we might have LIFE - not guilt, shame, or enslavement to our sins. We leave Good Friday service knowing the problem and the cost of its solution. I pray we left willing to be God's instruments of love and peace in this world. 

"Oh My God"

1 Who has believed our message? To whom will the LORD reveal his saving power? 2 My servant grew up in the LORD's presence like a tender green shoot, sprouting from a root in dry and sterile ground. There was nothing beautiful or majestic about his appearance, nothing to attract us to him. 3 He was despised and rejected—a man of sorrows, acquainted with bitterest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way when he went by. He was despised, and we did not care.

     4 Yet it was our weaknesses he carried; it was our sorrows that weighed him down. And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God for his own sins! 5 But he was wounded and crushed for our sins. He was beaten that we might have peace. He was whipped, and we were healed! 6 All of us have strayed away like sheep. We have left God's paths to follow our own. Yet the LORD laid on him the guilt and sins of us all.

     7 He was oppressed and treated harshly, yet he never said a word. He was led as a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers, he did not open his mouth. 8 From prison and trial they led him away to his death. But who among the people realized that he was dying for their sins—that he was suffering their punishment? 9 He had done no wrong, and he never deceived anyone. But he was buried like a criminal; he was put in a rich man's grave.

     10 But it was the LORD's good plan to crush him and fill him with grief. Yet when his life is made an offering for sin, he will have a multitude of children, many heirs. He will enjoy a long life, and the LORD's plan will prosper in his hands. 11 When he sees all that is accomplished by his anguish, he will be satisfied. And because of what he has experienced, my righteous servant will make it possible for many to be counted righteous, for he will bear all their sins. 12 I will give him the honors of one who is mighty and great, because he exposed himself to death. He was counted among those who were sinners. He bore the sins of many and interceded for sinners.
Isaiah 53:1-12 (NLT)

"The Crucifixion, A Medical Perspective"


27 Some of the governor's soldiers took Jesus into their headquarters and called out the entire battalion. 28 They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him. 29 They made a crown of long, sharp thorns and put it on his head, and they placed a stick in his right hand as a scepter. Then they knelt before him in mockery, yelling, "Hail! King of the Jews!" 30 And they spit on him and grabbed the stick and beat him on the head with it. 31 When they were finally tired of mocking him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him again. Then they led him away to be crucified.
The Crucifixion
32 As they were on the way, they came across a man named Simon, who was from Cyrene, and they forced him to carry Jesus' cross. 33 Then they went out to a place called Golgotha (which means Skull Hill). 34 The soldiers gave him wine mixed with bitter gall, but when he had tasted it, he refused to drink it.

     35 After they had nailed him to the cross, the soldiers gambled for his clothes by throwing dice. 36 Then they sat around and kept guard as he hung there. 37 A signboard was fastened to the cross above Jesus' head, announcing the charge against him. It read: "This is Jesus, the King of the Jews."
Matt 27:27-37 (NLT)
"How Deep the Father's Love"

At noon, darkness fell across the whole land until three o'clock. 46 At about three o'clock, Jesus called out with a loud voice, "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?" which means, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"

     47 Some of the bystanders misunderstood and thought he was calling for the prophet Elijah. 48 One of them ran and filled a sponge with sour wine, holding it up to him on a stick so he could drink. 49 But the rest said, "Leave him alone. Let's see whether Elijah will come and save him."

     50 Then Jesus shouted out again, and he gave up his spirit. 51 At that moment the curtain in the Temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. The earth shook, rocks split apart, 52 and tombs opened. The bodies of many godly men and women who had died were raised from the dead 53 after Jesus' resurrection. They left the cemetery, went into the holy city of
Jerusalem, and appeared to many people.

     54 The Roman officer and the other soldiers at the crucifixion were terrified by the earthquake and all that had happened. They said, "Truly, this was the Son of God!"
Matt 27:45-54 (NLT)


"It's Friday. But Sunday's Coming"

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