Good Friday is observed on the Friday that precedes Easter Sunday (also known as resurrection Sunday). Good Friday is also known as Holy Friday, Black Friday, Great Friday or Easter Friday.
The date of Good Friday varies from one year to the next on both the Georgian calendar, Eastern and Western. Good Friday is the widely instituted legal holiday across western country and 12 U.S. States. People, mostly Christians, celebrate this day by attending a Good Friday service or reading out the biblical accounts of Good Friday in memory of Jesus. However, a lot of European countries prohibit certain acts like dancing and horse racing seen as profaning the solemn nature of the day.
What happened on Good Friday?
After Judas betrayed Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane and received 30 pieces of silver, he told the guard that whomever he kisses is the one they are to arrest. Jesus was then arrested and taken to high priest’s house, where the high priest, the chief priest, the elders and scribes were waiting. They came together to put Jesus on trial but the trial turned out to be unfair because there was no evidence justifying Jesus’ death.
Since the religious leaders did not have the authority to put anyone to death under Roman law, Jesus was taken to the Roman governor, Pontius Pilate. They falsely accused Jesus of treason against the Roman empire for claiming to be the king of the Jews and for urging people not to pay the taxes.
Pilate tried to compromise with the religious leaders by having Jesus beaten, but this act did not satisfy them. So, Pilate handed Jesus over to crucified. Jesus was mocked as they dressed him in a purple robe and crown of thorns. The letters INRI were inscribed on the cross which translated to “Jesus of Nazareth King of the Jews”. Jesus, assisted by Simon of Cyrene was then forced to carry his cross to the place of death. It was at Golgotha where Jesus was crucified along with two other criminals.
Later in the day as described in the Bible, Joseph of Arimathea asked for Jesus’ body and was granted permission. Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean cloth and put it in a new tomb that had been carved in rock. He rolled a large stone in front of the tomb to seal it.
When we think about the cross on Good Friday, it’s only fitting that we are sobered by Christ’s sacrifice and by our sin. We do not approach this day as those who have no hope. Rather this is a day of profound joy!