It so happened, that one fine hot afternoon just a few days back, we went to cool ourselves to a nearby food plaza. As we waited for the lunch to arrive at the table, suddenly the topic of conversation drifted to the fact that Good Friday is around the corner. My colleague, who is a strong believer of Jesus, went about describing as to why we observe Good Friday. After some initial inhibition, I finally somehow became interested in the conversation and to be honest enough, I soon found myself digging deep into the topic. The vivid description given by my colleague about Lord’s sacrifice on this day compelled me to spread some light about his life through this BLOG. So here it goes…
Good Friday is a day of mourning, it is a day which marks betrayal and sufferings. This is the very day when Jesus was convicted and eventually crucified around 2000 years ago. Jesus came into this world to alleviate the suffering of other people. He stood for the Truth and died for the sake of the same. He did not run away from suffering. Jesus died on the cross for the redemption of the sins of we people.
Today, we mark Good Friday to pay our deepest tribute to the Son of God. Jesus preached way of life among masses and performed many miracles to uplift the people. As time passed, the number of people who followed him became larger and larger. However, there was another section of people who were affected by his actions and they wanted to do away with him. On some pretext Jesus was arrested by the guards, and his own disciple Judas aided in his arrest. He was arrested under the charges of subverting the nation, opposing taxes to Caesar and making himself a king. Jesus was charged with Blasphemy and sedition and his own disciples disowned him. When Jesus was produced before the Roman Governor Pilate, he referred the case to King of Herod, who was in Jerusalem at the time. Herod questioned Jesus but received no answer. Herod referred Jesus back to Pilate. Pilate informed the assembly that neither he nor Herod has found any fault with Jesus. Pilate wanted to release Jesus. However under the guidance of the chief priest, the crowd wanted Jesus to be crucified. Pilate’s wife had seen Jesus in dreams the night before and she had warned Pilate that Jesus was a righteous man. Pilate came before the crowd and declared that Jesus was an innocent man but he passed the death sentence on Jesus since he was bound by the pressure from the crowd. The sentence written was “Jesus of Nazareth, King of Jews”. Jesus carried his cross to the site of execution (assisted by Simon) called the place of the skull or “Golgotha” in Hebrew and in Latin “Calvary”. Jesus agonized on the cross for six hours before his spirit left his body.
Two secret admirers of Jesus, Joseph and Nicodemus placed the body of Jesus in a newly built tomb near the site of crucifixion. However on the first day of the week, his body was not to be found. As Jesus had said, he rose from the dead on the third day which we now call as Easter Sunday.
There are two other days that are historically related to Good Friday. These are:
Palm Sunday: Palm Sunday falls on Sunday before Easter. According to Gospels, Jesus Christ rode a donkey into Jerusalem and the celebrating people there laid down their clocks and small branches of trees in front of him. As donkey is an animal of peace, hence Jesus symbolized his entry as prince of peace and not a war waging king.
Last Supper: The Last Supper is the final meal that the Gospel accounts, Jesus shared with his apostles before his crucifixion. The overall narrative that is described in all the gospels about the Last supper is that after Jesus enters Jerusalem and encounters with various people and elders, Jesus shares a meal with his disciples. After the meal Jesus is betrayed, arrested, tried and crucified. During the meal Jesus predicts his betrayal at the hands of Judas and also of Peter’s denial three times.
Sufferings are not redemptive sometimes. Sometimes it is just agony and anguish without any reason whatsoever. People are hungry, sick, alone and dying. There are natural disaster, droughts, and diseases, lack of clean water and even loss of dignity caused by severe poverty. There is none to redeem a child of his suffering when he is reeling under poverty and feels pangs of hunger.
However, there are organizations and people who are carrying on with the good work started by Jesus himself and trying to heel people’s sorrows as much as possible. Jesus was a redeemer and hence there is no greater work than to redeem the pain and sufferings of people as much as possible. I wish, on this day of Good Friday, that we all take an oath to heal the wounded around us. It’s not so much about what religion we follow but more about what good every religion teaches us!