“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” – John 10:11
Silence. All we can hear right now is silence, just as the moment when Jesus died on the cross. There was silence in the whole area, when Jesus finally fulfilled the prophecy by sacrificing His life on the cross. That day was also just the same as today, it was just too ordinary, nothing special. The whole world was in their usual day but little did they know that it was the day that the Savior of the world died for their sins.
When we think about it, why is Good Friday called Good Friday? If it’s the time when Jesus died, it’s the day when He suffered the most under the hands of the people who proclaimed that He is God? Well, Jesus indeed suffered and died that time but it remains as Good Friday because it is indeed good. Finally the prophecy has been fulfilled and it is indeed good because it will then lead to Christ’s resurrection. Satan might have thought he won when Jesus died but little did he know that He would rise again and the moment He would rise again, He has brought us with Him.
Now, our verse today focuses on the very proclaiming of Jesus about Himself. Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep,” which is an easy analogy for the people before to understand and even for us to understand. Jesus is the Good Shepherd and He laid His life for the sheep. We are sheep, we are hard-headed, ignorant, sinful but we only listen to our master. However, the master we listen to depends on who we chose to give the control over our lives.
Jesus knows that primarily, our master is the evil one because by nature we are sinful. Although God made us perfect and that He is our Creator, our God and our Keeper, we tend to stray away from Him. We listen more to the voice of the evil one so we can continue to sin and eventually we will die as the wages of our sins. However, when Jesus came, He took us away from the hands of the enemy and made us complete in Him. He came to save the world, He came to suffer the punishment that is supposed to be ours because He is our true owner. He is our good shepherd and good shepherd lays His life for the sheep.
Despite Jesus saying that He is our good shepherd, He also became our lamb. He was the lamb that was slain so we can have forgiveness and eternal life. His nail-pierced hands, His spear-pierced body and His head holding the crown of thorns were supposed to be the punishment we will have to face but because He loves us, He offered His life for us. The wrath of the Father was poured out to Him that the cup was even empty after, leaving us nothing but grace, love and mercy.
Therefore, on this Good Friday may we remember to thank God for His mercy and grace. May we not forget that He died for all of us. He laid His life for us so that we will be saved. We are the reason why He gave His life, we are the reason why He suffered! He is the Good Shepherd but He became the lamb that was slain for our stead. Jesus is indeed our sacrifice. He did not just come to the world to tell the world that He loves it but He came to fully let us understand how far He can go because of His love. We are nothing but sinners, we never deserve God’s love and we never deserve Jesus’ sacrifice but because He is gracious, He still chose to save us.
Now, just what happened two thousand years ago, there was silence the moment Jesus died, let us also hear the silence now as we remember that day. However, the only difference we have now from before is that we know that His death means prophecy fulfilled. We now know that His death is the only way so we can have life. The difference also is that before they did not know what they were doing, they thought Jesus indeed sinned against God and against the government. Yet now, we look forward to the resurrection of Christ to which we can say that through that, we will also resurrect with Him, with our new lives that are in accordance to the holiness of God. Let us take this time to reflect and to repent. May we use this season to understand and to surrender ourselves to Jesus, our Good Shepherd who laid His life for us.
What love is this? That He really gave up His life for us?
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