Thanksgiving for Good Friday!
We are called upon to be thankful in everything for this is the will of God. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, we are to be thankful always, in all circumstances. The primary point of thanksgiving is our salvation in Jesus Christ. Everything else is secondary to that. That’s why Good Friday is thanksgiving day. Why? It helps us remember God’s glorious blessedness offered to us sinners through the blood of Jesus. Romans 4:7-8 “Blessed are those whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.8 Blessed is the one whose sin the Lord will never count against them.”[b] In 2 Corinthians 9:15, Paul says, “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift.” That is the gift of salvation in His Son…And in Paul’s great doxology in the end of 1 Corinthians 15:57, he says, “Thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Again, the focal point of our thanksgiving is on the person and work of Jesus Christ. Earlier in 1 Corinthians chapter 1 in verse 4, Paul said, “I thank my God always concerning you, for the grace of God which was given you in Christ Jesus.” So being thankful for my own salvation, being thankful for your salvation, for the work of God in my life and the work of God in your life. In 2 Corinthians 2:14, Paul again writes, “Thanks be to God who always leads us in His triumph in Christ.” So when it comes to being thankful, you can be thankful for a lot of things. But mostly we are thankful for our salvation. That is the primary thing, and that is the attitude of Paul in Colossians chapter 1. In verse 12, he is giving thanks to the Father. Now this is typical of Paul. He does this very often at the outset of his letters. “Giving thanks to the Father.”
And for what? For this: “The Father who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of Light. For He delivered us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” That is really at the heart of the Gospel. We are delivered from the domain of darkness and transferred to the Kingdom of His beloved Son. That deliverance involves redemption. It involves forgiveness. It involves being qualified to share. It involves an inheritance. It involves sainthood…So, again, I say right at the heart of this whole matter of salvation is this massive, overreaching concept of deliverance. Let us all be thankful because of the cross. More so, without the shedding of the blood there is no forgiveness of sins (Hebrews :22). Praise the Lord for Good Friday!
A Message on Resurrection
The resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ proclaims the truthfulness of the Word of God. It is the cornerstone of Christian faith. Even Paul the Apostle admitted that if the resurrection did not happen, the Christian faith is futile, “… And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins” (1 Corinthians 15:17). In this sense, making a case for the truth of the resurrection also makes a case for the truth claims of Jesus and, in turn, the reliability and truth of the Bible. When Christ was on the cross, it seemed that all had been lost. Death had won. But after three days, Christ was raised from the dead. The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the great hope for us Christians. Because it reminds us that we are destined for eternity with God—free of pain, free of suffering, free of problems, free of pressures, free of pandemic crisis— and filled with boundless love. The resurrection of Jesus Christ reminds us of our future resurrection because “…our citizenship is in heaven and we eagerly await a Savior from there, who by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body” (Philippians 3:20-21).
What happened to Christ will happen to us. Like Christ we will die, but Christ’s resurrection reminds us that death is not the end. Christ’s resurrection gives us hope for a glorious, pain-free, death-free future. The resurrection of Jesus reminds us of our future hope: Revelation 21:3-4. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” This is our future destiny brothers and sister. Praise the Lord and to God be the glory!