Countdown to the Cross - Good Friday
Thursday night turns into Friday morning. Jesus is in agony praying in the Garden of Gethsemane. The 11 disciples are sleeping and Jesus is in distress. The 12th disciple is somewhere within the walls of the city darting down a street. His feet are clean, washed by the hands of the man he will betray. His heart has been claimed by the evil one. The final encounter has begun.
Judas comes with temple guards and betrays the Lord into their hands. And he does it all with a kiss. Meanwhile, the other 11 disciples are now wide awake and begin to leave Him...one by one.
Jesus is taken into custody and 6 trials begin to ensue.
The First Trial - Annas the high priest looks for an accusation biding time until the Sanhedrin are gathered at the High Priestly Villa. Jewish law forbade a judge sitting alone to try anyone. It also forbade trying anyone at night. Laws were broken.
The Second Trial - This was the primary trial before the Sanhedrin. Jesus is condemned and misused.
The Third Trial - Happens immediately at dawn. Condemnation of Him is repeated. Meanwhile, Peter denies Jesus a third time as Jesus looks at him while the Romans take Jesus away.
The Four Trial - Jesus is taken before Pilate. Pilate will not condemn Him, but sends Him to Herod.
The Fifth Trial - Jesus is taken before Herod. Herod asks Jesus to perform a miracle. Jesus remains silent. He is ridiculed even more and sent back to Pilate.
The Sixth Trial - Jesus stands again before Pilate. The Jewish crowd begins to cry out for His crucifixion. Jesus is scourged, mocked and turned over to be crucified. Roman soldiers place a crown of thorns on His head, beat Him, spit on Him and make Him carry His cross. Meanwhile, Judas went and hung himself.
Jesus stumbles under the weight of the cross and Simon the Cyrene carries it the rest of the way up to Golgotha. He is crucified at 9 a.m. on Friday morning.
Seven Sayings on the Cross:
-"Father forgive them, they know not what they do"
-"Today you will be with me in paradise"
-"Woman, behold your son. John, behold your mother."
DARKNESS BEGINS AT 12 NOON LASTING UNTIL 3 PM
-"My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?"
-"It is finished"
-"Father, into Thy hands I commit my Spirit"
JESUS DIES AT 3PM...For ME...and for YOU. (I'm weeping as I write this)
At 3 pm the veil of the temple is torn in two and a major earthquake shakes the city.
Rocks are torn in two. Graves open and people rise to mortality and go into the city
The Romans pierce Jesus' side and the Passover lamb is slain in the temple area.
Jesus is buried by sundown.
THAT...is Good Friday. Not good for Jesus...good for US.
May His sacrifice never be in vain. May we never take it for granted. He gave everything to be with us. Let's make this a true Good Friday and give OUR ALL to HIM! Amen and Amen!!!