It Is Finished. Good Friday.

Today we observe Good Friday, the day of the death of Jesus. Many Christian Churches have different ways of observation, to prepare us for the coming resurrection of the Lord on Easter Sunday. Today, the sacrifices we have made during Lent culminate in our internalization of the great offering of Christ’s life. If we have been diligent in our Lenten preparations, Good Friday hits us with a power and force that brings us, literally and figuratively, to our knees with the grasp of what Jesus poured out for us. It becomes personal, a tiny sliver of the cross is buried in our heart. And so each year, we find that we give ourselves over to Christ just a little more through this time of penance and reflection. 

 

The Easter Triduum, the marking of the days of Jesus’ passion and resurrection, the  most important time of the church year, begins with the evening Mass of Holy Thursday, reaches its high point in the Easter Vigil, and closes on Easter Sunday evening. After preparing during the days of Lent, we celebrate these holiest of days in the Church year.

From John, Chapter 19:

Then Pilate tried to release him, but the Jewish leaders told him, “If you release this man, you are no friend of Caesar’s. Anyone who declares himself a king is a rebel against Caesar.

At these words Pilate brought Jesus out to them again and sat down at the judgement bench on the stone paved platform. It was now about noon of the day before Passover.

And Pilate said to the Jews, “Here is your King!”

“What? Crucify your king?” Pilate asked. “We have no King but Caesar,” the chief priests shouted back.

So they had him at last, and he was taken out of the city, carrying his cross to the place known as “The Skull,” in Hebrew, “Golgotha.” There they crucified him and two others with him, one on either side, with Jesus between them. And Pilate posted a sign over him reading “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.” The place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and the signboard was written in Hebrew, Latin, and Greek, so that many people read it.

Then the chief priests said to Pilate, “Change it from ‘The King of the Jews’ to ‘He said, I am King of the Jews.’ ”

Pilate replied, “What I have written, I have written. It stays exactly as it is.”

When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they put his garments into four piles, one for each of them. But they said, “Let’s not tear up his robe,” for it was seamless. “Lets throw dice to see who gets it.” This fulfilled the scripture that says, “They divided my clothes among them, and cast lots for my robe.” So that is what they did.

Standing near the cross were Jesus’ mother, Mary, his aunt, the wife of Cleopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother standing there beside me, his close friend, he said to her, “He is your son.”

And to me he said, “She is your mother.” And from then on, I took her into my home.

Jesus knew that everything was now finished, and to fulfill the scriptures said, “I’m thirsty.” A jar of sour wine was sitting there, so a sponge was soaked in it and put on a hyssop branch and help up to his lips.

When Jesus had tasted it, he said, “It is finished,” and bowed his head and dismissed his spirit.

Today we would like to invite you to share with us your reflections, your thoughts, your favorite readings on Good Friday. We sincerely hope that you will join in this conversation as a sharing of our common faith, an active searching, united in asking in this small way for God’s blessing upon His world this Easter Triduum. So many of us see change as something that is all or nothing. We postpone the changes we need to make in our lives to improve our relationship with God because we aren’t mentally “ready” to make that leap. In reality, our path to God is made in tiny steps, small differences, the little things that take us one step closer in faith.

We ask you to join us, help us, take that step. Together and seperately, may we aid each other through our words and prayers, to make this Good Friday an opening for the light that is Christ to penetrate our darkness.

I would also like to share a paragraph from The Catechism of the Catholic Church.

In Her Magisterial teaching of the faith and in the witness of her saints, the Church has never forgotten that “sinners were the authors and the ministers of all the sufferings the Divine Redeemer endured.” Taking into account the fact that our sins affect Christ himself, the Church does not hesitate to impute to Christians the gravest responsibility for the torment inflicted upon Jesus, a responsiblity with which they have all too often burdened the Jews alone.

]

Please respect the solemnity and purpose of this post and keep the comments on the Passion of our Lord.

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197 Responses to It Is Finished. Good Friday.

  1. I was late getting to my branch of the Treehouse this morning. I’m glad. What wonderful and inspiring comments. Thank you to all of you and Menagerie for this wonderful opportunity to be here with you and my fellow like-minded Treepers. I love and cherish you. God Has Our Backs. I KNOW it.

    Liked by 7 people

  2. Rickster says:

    I have never been the Christian I should have been. Having been raised a Catholic I always thought going to Church once a week and following the rituals made you gtg. I distanced myself from the Church about ten years ago and found Christ on a personal level, but still had my pitfalls. After this past year I have to say I do believe in Miracles and on this Good Friday promise to strive harder to be a better Christian. Thank you to all the great people on the Treehouse, and Sundance for making this such a special place.

    Liked by 10 people

  3. Yesterday I heard a truly inspirational interview on Relevant Radio with Brant Pitre, a scholar who wrote the book, Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist. I had always assumed Jesus’ words in the garden asking the Father to “allow this cup to pass from me” were merely poetic. Far from it. Likewise, it is deeply meaningful when Jesus on the cross refuses the first offer of wine (mixed with gall) but then accepts wine on a hyssop branch (as was used in the very first Passover) just before he dies. The New Passover begins at the Last Supper and continues through the crucifixion.

    Pitre explains:

    “Most important of all, by waiting to drink the fourth cup of the Passover until the very moment of his
    death, Jesus united the Last Supper to his death on the cross. By refusing to drink of the fruit of the vine until he gave up his final breath, he joined the offering of himself under the form of bread and wine to the offering of himself on Calvary. Both actions said the same thing: “This is my body, given for you” (Luke 22:19). In short, by means of the Last Supper, Jesus transformed the Cross into a Passover, and by means of the Cross, he transformed the Last Supper into a sacrifice.”

    The Fourth Cup and the New Passover
    http://brantpitre.com/documents/printable_outlines/fourth_cup.pdf

    Another amazing insight from Pitre’s interview was about the Passover lamb that Jesus instructed his disciples to prepare. This meant obtaining the lamb and taking it to the temple for slaughtering so the blood could be poured out on the altar. Then the disciples would have been given 2 pieces of wood on which to roast the lamb for the Passover feast. One piece of wood would be secured lengthwise along the lamb’s spine and the other secured across the front limbs. Jesus’ execution by crucifixion happened in exactly the way He planned for it to happen. He is truly our Paschal sacrifice!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Pam says:

    But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
    Romans 5:8 NIV

    Liked by 8 people

  5. kyasgrandma says:

    How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!
    Isaiah 52:7 (KJV)

    The beautiful feet of our Lord Who brings good news to all mankind.
    Those beautiful feet that walked this earth.
    Those beautiful feet nailed to the cross.
    Those beautiful feet of our Lord and our Savior Jesus Christ who will once again walk this earth.
    Jesus Christ the Lord, Who died and rose again to save a wretch like me.
    Even now, Lord Jesus, come!

    Liked by 7 people

  6. loopycann says:

    The past few years as I inch ever closer to my final days,I often question if I’ve really made enough sacrifices and worked for good in the eyes of our Lord. Always I come up w/ no I haven’t. Every day I try to be mindful of my brothers and sisters here on earth and assist them with a willing spirit and a humble heart but still feel there is something I could have done more. I will continue to doubt myself when it comes to being ‘ worthy enough” and that’s okay because as long as I’m mindful of the great debt I owe to Jesus Christ ,I will keep doing his will.

    Liked by 3 people

    • piper567 says:

      loopycann…^^^…Jesus did all of the “work”…We simply believe in His perfect carrying out of The Law.
      We cannot be perfect, or even, really, always “good”.
      Without His sacrifice, we are doomed.
      With His resurrection we have eternal life.
      Trust Him for your salvation, not your works. Your works are proof of our salvation: they are done in gratitude.

      Liked by 5 people

    • Rickster says:

      Amen 🙂

      Like

    • The Gospel for those broken by the Church. This is for you. I thought the same as you for a long period in my adult life. If you believe it was all gift on account of Christ.

      Like

  7. SPMI says:

    Loaded with cocaine. I had been using it and dealing it for 17 months. I was in another country at a very bad place with very bad people. I was drugged out and went into a bedroom to sleep. A guy woke me up roughly and asked me who I was. I replied and he said “what the f are you doing here. Get up!” I did and they ushered me out of the house and into the back seat of a car. He and his girlfriend got in the front seat and we drove away. I said,”where are we going and he took a gun out of his jacket and waved it at me. They began laughing in a really horrible way. I was really freaked out. I did not know what to do. I yelled at them;
    ” In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth take me to my hotel.” They stopped the car and laughed again at me and said where is it. I gave them the name and we were there in 5 minutes. He said,” get out of the car and get out of my country. You are a very lucky man.” This happened on Good Friday 1980. I got home and went to a priest and prostrated myself on the floor and gave my confession. That was Easter Sunday 1980. I think of this every year at this time.
    I had been an atheist for many years before this incident.
    Thanks be to Almighty God!

    Liked by 12 people

  8. Pam says:

    Liked by 4 people

  9. The Tundra PA says:

    Thank you, Menagerie, for this magnificent post; and thank you Treepers for such beautiful and inspirational stories. A blessed Triduum to all.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Big Bruce says:

    The last words of Buddha: “Strive without ceasing”. The last words of Christ: “It is finished”.
    A Christian can rest in the completed work of Jesus. He atoned for our sins and God credits His perfect record of righteousness to us.
    What a wonderous plan of salvation.

    Liked by 4 people

  11. Joe Blow says:

    Thank you for this beautiful thread, Menagerie. Blessings to all here at the Treehouse.

    Not only is this Good Friday, but today is exactly 2 years to the day that I accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior. It is heartwarming to read so many stories of others here who have shared that experience.

    Liked by 5 people

  12. Sam says:

    Thank you for another excellent article, Menagerie. Jesus Christ loved us from the foundation of the world and proved it by dying a horrific death to pay for our sins. I am humbled and awed by this utter devotion.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. All American Snowflake says:

    I woke up this morning thinking that I had not made my Easter baskets yet this year. I love to make baskets for my lady friends (as we say down South). I include a Scripture “memory verse” card that I make using a magnet to put on the refrigerator, and some candy, colored eggs, and some other items based on things that that particular recipient would like most.
    Actually I wasn’t going to make baskets this year. My mind wandered to why now start baskets. My best guess someone─y’all?─ must have been praying for me.

    Like

  14. Pam says:

    Liked by 1 person

  15. WeThePeople2016 says:

    Saw our first bunny of the year in our yard yesterday morning. It was brown and white with lots of fur and was nestled in the grass next to our Easter decorations. What a fitting reminder on Maundy Thursday of the meaning of this Easter weekend. It reminded me of life, hope, and God’s promise.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. justfactsplz says:

    Thank you Menagerie for another beautiful post. Today is my daughter’s birthday and she is laying in a hospital suffering and in pain across the country from me. When I talked to her today she told me about a Facebook post her sister wrote to her today. It was about this being Good Friday and how Jesus suffered so much that day and that she had this opportunity to reflect and share in His suffering. It gave my daughter strength as she lay there and reflected on Christ’s suffering for her that she was given eternal life. It brought tears to my eyes but I knew she was okay sharing this day with Jesus and that something good will come out of this. She now has renewal in her spirit and I am comforted.

    To all of my Treeper friends may you have a blessed Easter weekend. If you have stumbled across this thread and don’t know the saving grace of Jesus I pray that you would ask Him to forgive your sins and invite him in to your heart. It is the most important decision one can make in their life. God bless you all.

    Liked by 4 people

  17. Bryan Masson says:

    Although I’ve been with you guys since the first primary, devouring The Treehouse, this is my first post.

    The Good Friday liturgy is by far my favorite of the year. No mass is allowed today and communion is the consecrated gifts from Holy Thursday Mass.

    It is unlike any liturgy of the year: stark, simple, silence filled, yet rich in symbolism and beauty – truly powerful.

    Today was no different when we went to church. The homily was thought provoking. The choir sang glorious, polyphonic music and chant. We sang great hymns and also chanted antiphonally with Father during the prayers.

    We sang without instruments and it will stay that way until tomorrow night when we sing the Gloria and everyone brings their bells to ring while it’s sung. With the choir singing in parts, you get so lost in the sound of everyone’s voices that you forget there is no organ playing. Hearing everyone singing on this day also chokes me up.

    The most powerful moments for me are the silent entrance procession to the altar where the ministers lay prostrate on the floor while we kneel and reflect for awhile. When the ministers are vulnerable position of laying face down on the floor in total humility, you know something of extreme gravity is about to happen and you really are met with the significance of this event that changed the course of history and made it possible for sinners to find redemption.

    Also, watching members of the congregation during the veneration of the cross moves me to tears. Some touch it, some genuflect, some grab it with both hands, some solemn and reserved and some who you can see are actually grieving as they cry at the foot of the cross.

    By the time it all ends (two hours later..lol) and we leave the church in complete silence, I’m always completely worn out mentally and physically from the intensity of it all. I’ve been meditating on all of this since I got home earlier.

    Blessings to all of you on what truly is a good Friday.

    The Hymn: “At the Name of Jesus”

    1 At the name of Jesus
    ev’ry knee shall bow,
    ev’ry tongue confess him
    King of glory now;
    ’tis the Father’s pleasure
    we should call him Lord,
    who from the beginning
    was the mighty Word.

    2 Humbled for a season,
    to receive a name
    from the lips of sinners,
    unto whom he came;
    faithfully he bore it
    spotless to the last,
    brought it back victorious
    when from death he passed;

    3 bore it up triumphant
    with its human light,
    through all ranks of creatures,
    to the central height,
    to the throne of God-head,
    to the Father’s breast;
    filled it with the glory
    of that perfect rest.

    4 Name him, Christians, name him –
    strong your love as death –
    but with awe and wonder,
    and with life-filled breath;
    he is God the Savior,
    he is Christ the Lord,
    ever to be worshiped,
    evermore adored.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Oblio says:

    Great and Holy Saturday is often neglected in the West, but in the East it is when we celebrate Christ’s saving work on His day of rest where he Tramples Down Death by Death.

    Linked video is somewhat long, with subtitles, and chronicles Orthodox Holy Week – worth it for the images and hymns alone – let alone the Passion Gospel contained within.

    Like

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