There was a crowd, though they weren’t lined up outside of a department store. There was saving to be found, but that was not yet fully realized, and definitely did not involve a TV set. There was one who was to offer the best deal, yet no amount of money could take advantage of it. This Black Friday was different than any to which we are accustomed. This Black Friday was actually…well, black. From noon to three in the afternoon, darkness took over the sky. In the middle of all this darkness, Jesus, God in the flesh, hung on that cross.
The cross is the place where God, having become flesh in Jesus, took upon Himself the brokenness of our fallen world. Instead of abandoning us, God chose to reach over the infinite chasm between holiness and sin and seize humanity-by becoming one with it. God became a human and threw Himself completely into our mess in order to deliver us out of it.
It was because Jesus completely entered our broken human condition that a way was made for us to leave that condition—to overcome death. The cross was actually God’s victory over darkness—not with brute or political power, but through Christ’s submitting to all the torment darkness had to offer, and then overcoming it by exhausting it. When speaking about the wisdom of redeeming mankind through the cross, Paul wrote it was “the wisdom of which none of the rulers of this age has understood; for if they had understood it they would not have crucified the Lord of glory” (I Corinthians 2:8). We, too, may struggle to understand it, but the result is real. God, the creator of the world, sent His Son so that, through the cross, you could be saved and have a relationship with Him. “He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed.” (I Peter 2:24)
The beauty, the possibility, and the freedom afforded to us as Christians find their roots in the ugliness of Golgotha. Never forget the cost of that Black Friday.