Good Friday of the Lord's PassionAnd bearing his own cross, he went forth to that place which is called Calvary, but in Hebrew Golgotha. Where they crucified him, and with him two others, one on each side, and Jesus in the midst. And Pilate wrote a title also, and he put it upon the cross. And the writing was: JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS. This title therefore many of the Jews did read: because the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh to the city: and it was written in Hebrew, in Greek, and in Latin.
Then the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate: Write not, The King of the Jews; but that he said, I am the King of the Jews. Pilate answered: What I have written, I have written. The soldiers therefore, when they had crucified him, took his garments, (and they made four parts, to every soldier a part,) and also his coat. Now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. They said then one to another: Let us not cut it, but let us cast lots for it, whose it shall be; that the scripture might be fulfilled, saying: They have parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture they have cast lot. And the soldiers indeed did these things. Now there stood by the cross of Jesus, his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalen.
When Jesus therefore had seen his mother and the disciple standing whom he loved, he saith to his mother: Woman, behold thy son. After that, he saith to the disciple: Behold thy mother. And from that hour, the disciple took her to his own. Afterwards, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, said: I thirst. Now there was a vessel set there full of vinegar. And they, putting a sponge full of vinegar and hyssop, put it to his mouth. Jesus therefore, when he had taken the vinegar, said: It is finished. And bowing his head, he gave up the ghost. –John 19:17-30
For a very long time, I often wondered why today was called “Good Friday,” because the events described in St. John’s account can hardly be called good. Today, however, really celebrates our own redemption, and it was good for us, for because of the events we commemorate today, we can, if we follow God’s laws and His ways, be given eternal life.
Those on public life would do well to remember that Jesus was a public figure in his own day. He was crucified because he stood up for what was right, and gave no thought to the cost for doing so. Not only was it His mission to die in his divine nature that we might be saved, in His humanity, he knew that the cost of saying and doing what was right would be his own demise.
Those in public life would do well to follow the example of Christ.