Every two weeks, like clockwork, money shows up in my bank account. I’ve come to expect it to be so, and I would be shocked (and angry!) if payday showed up without said money being deposited in my account. I learned a long time ago that if I work, I receive compensation; and if I don’t work, I receive no compensation, but rather consequence.
The concept has been around for ages, so long in fact that it carries with it an expectation that we will receive that which we have earned. 2 Thessalonians 3:10 says, “If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat” (ESV). God told Cain, son of Adam, before he murdered Abel, “If you do well,mail you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. It’s desire is contrary to you, but you must rule over it” (Genesis 4:7 ESV). For every action there is a reaction. We teach our children this concept as soon as they are able to learn. There are benefits for good behavior and consequences for bad behavior.
And then came Jesus. On a very good Friday around 2000 years ago, He chose to take on Himself the consequences of all sin, dying on the cross. As a result, through faith in Him, the tables were turned. Instead of receiving the appropriate wages for our sins, we received the best payday ever! “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23 ESV emphasis mine). “But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many” (Romans 5:15 ESV).
We celebrate this Very Good Friday every year, remembering Jesus’ death on the cross, paying our sin bill once and for all. “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23 ESV). We don’t call it Good Friday because of all of His suffering; rather we call it Good Friday because of what all of His suffering accomplished.
I shudder to think what life would be like had it not been for the grace received through the atoning work of Jesus on the cross. It is indeed a Very Good Friday! Blessings on your Easter weekend.