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Saturday, 19 April 2014

GOOD FRIDAY MESSAGE

I posted this on 2 April 2010 and felt inspired to re-post this year.  Regrettably, I should have done it yesterday but it is not too late!  The message is still relevant - it always will be, whatever day or hour it might be posted.  This is a message of victory over darkness, of good over evil, of joy over sadness, of hope over utter despair . . . . and the joy of Easter Sunday lives on for ever.

This superb drawing of Jesus hangs in my bedroom. It is Our Lord, beaten so cruelly by soldiers after experiencing several unjust trials and then mocked and ridiculed before finally giving his life for us at his crucifixion.

This drawing of 1941 originates from World War Two in Egypt. A Polish soldier drew it for my late dear wife's father, also a Polish soldier fighting for The Allies, and he brought it back with him safely to England through all the big battles, including Tobruk and El Alamein.  It has survived without blemish for 73 years.

So what does this picture depict? A fairy tale? - some may so.
I for one do not think so . . . . in fact I am certain, it is not so.

Earlier, in the Garden Of Gethsemane, when the tension of the situation was so great, he sweat great drops of blood from his forehead. In his humanity he knew the ordeals he would have to go through for the will of his father - not just the physical pain but also he knew he had to withstand the coming great spiritual battle.

Not only did he have so bear excrusiating physical pain on the cross but also he, the sinless sacrificial lamb without spot or blemish, would be burdened with the sins of the entire world; past, present and future. Not only this but he would also be subjected to the opposing total might of all the demonic forces of darkness, desperately trying to stop him, as they had strived to do throughout history.

In his divinity he had agreed long ago with the two other members of the Godhead that he would gladly do this for us to give us all a chance of Salvation.

However, the real almost unbearable pain for him was another spiritual one which many do not consider.

When he said, "My God, my God why hast thou forsaken me?" people often wonder why he said, "My God" twice.

The answer is that at this dreaded hour when the sins of the world were put on his shoulders two members of the Godhead; God the Father and God the Holy Spirit, and remember Jesus was the third member of the Trinity as God the Son, turned their backs on him for the first time from within eternity.  They had to do so because from that moment until his death he lost his absolute righteousness due to our sins and God the Father and God the Holy Spirit had to turn away from him. Jesus had never throughout all eternity been separated from them like this and it was almost too much to bear.  The pain and the spiritual warfare he could stand but this separation is what broke his heart.

At this point when Jesus was nearing the end of his battle and at the ninth hour, total darkness covered the whole world - everywhere!! God would not allow anyone to see his son when the sins of the whole world were on his shoulders on that cross - the time when he exchanged his righteousness for our sins.

This total darkness is a proven fact in secular history - there was indeed absolute darkness on the entire planet for three hours, an event which coincided with a switch on the cross between good and evil.

The darkness was universal - just as it will be just before he comes again at Second Advent. Then when he comes the whole universe will be filled with light and he really will be the light of the entire world - and we shall be with him.

No-one took his life from him - he gave it willingly as the ultimate sinless sacrifice. He could have come down from that cross any time he wanted and summoned legions of angels to help him but knew he had a job to do and chose to go through with it; for that is the reason he came into the world - for us!  Aren't we utterly blessed?

The frightened disciples did not know any of this - they were totally devastated and to them their world had come to an abrupt end until they came to know the real and full meaning of the Easter message.

When all his work was done and every single prophesy had been fulfilled Jesus chose to die and with a loud voice said, "It is finished".

A Roman soldier witnessing said, "Surely this man is the son of God". Why? - because he had seen countless men hanging on crosses in agony wanting to die but not able to so and lasting for days. Yet he recognised Jesus actually had the power to end his own life quickly which no man in the soldier's experience had been able to do until now - the others could not do so with both hands tied and in that position on the cross - utterly impossible, so they had to wait for days to die.

The robber, who chose to believe him, must have been given tremendous hope when he heard Jesus say to him with authority, "Today, you will be with me in paradise!"

Personally I am very grateful Jesus did this for us and I thank him for it more than words can say.

20 comments:

  1. imagine their devastation on good friday...seeing all they gave up wiped away....i imagine these three days were pretty brutal for them to face.....but what victory eh? a turn in the story of everything...

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    1. Yes Brian they all must have been so beaten up and helpless that their Master had gone and even when the tomb was empty and the body was missing they were in total disarray. Things didn't change for them really until Pentecost when they received The Holy Spirit.

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  2. Such a great post...I'm glad you put it up again! Without Easter, Christmas really doesn't mean all that much, does it! We need death to be conquered for us. Best of all, it's a true story.

    I'm glad you gave the history on the drawing! Amazing it's history and travels safely to your father in law so many years ago!

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    1. Yes, such an amazing time and it's all part of the Divine Plan when we shall one day live as we are meant to live - but that's future and for now we all have a job to do.

      Yes, it is remarkable about that drawing - it really is as good as new.

      Happy Easter

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  3. The drawing is an amazing treasure....and I know that you are blessed to have it.
    As Easter Sunday approaches, I am every mindful of the price that our Lord paid for our sins. Easter and Christ's resurrection are reasons for my eternal joy.
    May your Easter be filled with His blessings, my friend.
    J.

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    1. Thank you Jackie and Easter Blessings to you and all your loved ones ~ Eddie x

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  4. Eddie ~ my dearest and I are overwhelmed and touched with your sketch of Jesus. What a precious treasure you have. Do you know if this soldier ever did any other drawings. I also loved your tribute to the Savior in your post. Blessings for a joyful Easter.

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    1. Hi Wanda
      Yes it is a poweful drawing. Maria and I knew nothing more about its history and we do not know whether the soldier did any others - but I presume he must have done so. He was so talented.

      Happy Easter to you and family

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  5. You have caught the true meaning of Easter and today The Lord Has Risen!
    Happy Easter.
    Maggie x

    Nuts in May

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  6. The sketch is so powerful, Eddie. I am glad you still have it and that it cements your faith. Happy Easter. Hope your day is filled with blessings.
    Suzie
    xox

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    1. Thank you Suzie
      And a very Happy Easter to you

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  7. Keith sent me a note and said he can't comment here but wanted me to for him! He says...

    "Just say I was impressed with his post, and even though I'm not a Christian I found it very moving and well written."

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    1. Please convey my thanks to Keith for me, Betsy.

      And if you are watching this Keith would you not agree that we have a lovely lady as our go between! lol Bet that made Betsy return to say something! lol

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  8. Eddie this a really touched post and what wonderful drawing and his history!
    Really nice post!

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    1. Thanks Gloria - glad you liked the drawing - wanted you to see it. And glad you liked the post. It moved me to write it.

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  9. Happy Easter Eddie, that is a beautiful drawing and how amazing that it survived the battlefields of WW2.

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    1. Hi Mimi - Happy Easter.
      Yes, I am most fortunate to have it and will make sure it is always kept for future generations.

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  10. As always, Eddie, your faith is strong - and enviable. I like to consider myself a man of faith, a Christian, but I am a weak man in many regards, always with doubts at the edges of my mind even during my strongest moments. It always helps to have faith such as yours displayed. Thank you and Happy Easter!

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    1. Thanks Jim. I think we are all a nlittle weak around the edges sometimes - we are all human. Even Thomas doubted a little didn't he!

      And I know I fall a long way short of the person God wants me to be - I know it!

      Happy Easter Jim

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