good friday.

the passion and death on the cross of the Lord Jesus Christ.

matthew 27:24-61

24 so when pilate saw that he was gaining nothing, but rather that a riot was beginning, he took water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, “i am innocent of this man's blood; see to it yourselves.” 25 and all the people answered, “his blood be on us and on our children!” 26 then he released for them barabbas, and having scourged Jesus, delivered him to be crucified.

27 then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the governor's headquarters, and they gathered the whole battalion before him. 28 and they stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, 29 and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on his head and put a reed in his right hand. and kneeling before him, they mocked him, saying, “hail, king of the jews!” 30 and they spit on him and took the reed and struck him on the head. 31 and when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the robe and put his own clothes on him and led him away to crucify him.

32 as they went out, they found a man of cyrene, simon by name. they compelled this man to carry his cross. 33 and when they came to a place called golgotha (which means place of a skull), 34 they offered him wine to drink, mixed with gall, but when he tasted it, he would not drink it. 35 and when they had crucified him, they divided his garments among them by casting lots. 36 then they sat down and kept watch over him there. 37 and over his head they put the charge against him, which read, “this is Jesus, the king of the jews.” 38 then two robbers were crucified with him, one on the right and one on the left. 39 and those who passed by derided him, wagging their heads 40 and saying, “you who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself! if you are the Son of God, come down from the cross.” 41 so also the chief priests, with the scribes and elders, mocked him, saying, 42 “he saved others; he cannot save himself. he is the king of israel; let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. 43 he trusts in God; let God deliver him now, if he desires him. for he said, ‘i am the Son of God.’” 44 and the robbers who were crucified with him also reviled him in the same way.

45 now from the sixth hourthere was darkness over all the landuntil the ninth hour. 46 and about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “my God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” 47 and some of the bystanders, hearing it, said, “this man is calling elijah.” 48 and one of them at once ran and took a sponge, filled it with sour wine, and put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink. 49 but the others said, “wait, let us see whether elijah will come to save him.” 50 and Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit.

51 and behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. and the earth shook, and the rocks were split. 52 the tombs also were opened. and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, 53 and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many. 54 when the centurion and those who were with him, keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were filled with awe and said, “truly this was the Son of God!”

55 there were also many women there, looking on from a distance, who had followed Jesus from aalilee, ministering to him, 56 among whom were mary magdalene and mary the mother of james and joseph and the mother of the sons of zebedee.

57 when it was evening, there came a rich man from arimathea, named joseph, who also was a disciple of Jesus. 58 he went to pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. then pilate ordered it to be given to him. 59 and joseph took the body and wrapped it in a clean linen shroud 60 and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had cut in the rock. and he rolled a great stone to the entrance of the tomb and went away. 61 mary magdalene and the other mary were there, sitting opposite the tomb.

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before thy cross i kneel and see the heinousness of my sin, my iniquity that caused thee to be ‘made a curse’, the evil that excites the severity of divine wrath. show me the enormity of my guilt by the crown of thorns, the pierced hands and feet, the bruised body, the dying cries. thy blood is the blood of incarnate God, its worth infinite, its value beyond all thought. infinite must be the evil and guilt that demands such a price. sin is my malady, my monster, my foe, my viper, born in my birth, alive in my life, strong in my character, dominating my faculties, following me as a shadow, intermingling with my every thought, my chain that holds me captive in the empire of my soul. sinner that i am, why should the sun give me light, the air supply breath, the earth bear my tread, its fruits nourish me, its creatures subserve my ends? yet thy compassions yearn over me, thy heart hastens to my rescue, thy love endured my curse, thy mercy bore my deserved stripes. let me walk humbly in the lowest depths of humiliation, bathed in thy blood, tender of conscience, triumphing gloriously as an heir of salvation.

::  the valley of vision  ::

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Lord, help my heart to reflection upon my Savior's passion as i ponder the darkness of my own heart.  may i become more deeply acquainted with my sin that put my Savior on that cross that i may rejoice all the more in my redemption. it's friday but sunday's coming...