Good Friday Meditation: “Who Would You Die For?”
18 April 2014
The Rev. Todd R. Goddard, pastor
East Rochester and West Walworth: Zion United Methodist Churches
I grew up a preacher’s kid
in the Jesus Christ Superstar era.
The youth group put on a production of Superstar
in the sanctuary one year during Holy Week.
Though I sang in the chorus,
I knew every word.
I still know most of them
and have been know to sing them loudly in the shower or car.
It is interesting how culture influences faith and belief.
Over the past few years,
I’ve dived deep into studies of the Passion,
as presented in the Gospels.
My experiences in Jerusalem and the Holy Lands
together with the media I’ve consumed on the topic
has truly enriched my own spiritual walk,
the walk of others who have joined me.
Every time I experience the Passion of Jesus,
my heart mourns, yet,
it is tempered with hindsight
and a strong conviction of faith
of what happens Easter morning.
We’ve heard the Passion read on Sunday
and again here today.
The question that keeps coming to mind is
“Who Would You Die For?”
we’ve been told,
that God sent us His Son,
not to condemn the world,
but that the world might be saved through him.
Sadly, our ancestors killed God’s Son, Jesus Christ,
as we have just heard.
God’s Son was willing to die for us,
so, it’s only logical to ask,
who would we die for?
Who would we die for?
Most of us would jump up
and say we’d die for a spouse,
a family member.
Of course we would.
Individuals who serve in paramilitary or military organizations
are trained to give their lives for their buddies, partner, or innocent bystanders;
but only after ensuring personal safety.
Individual acts of heroism are rare,
known only because of the medal or media attention they attract.
The answer to this question might also be age related,
or related to one’s relative health.
At every stage of life
there are circumstances where death may be the least, worst thing.
Would you die for a stranger?
Would you die for two strangers?
Indeed, would you die to save the world?
The willingness for our God
to give His Son
to save the world
only begins to pry open the revelation
of the depth and breadth of God’s
He died for every saint and every sinner.
He died for every sin.
The blood of the cross
takes away the sins of the world,
this proves God’s love for us.
on this Good Friday,
made Good only through suffering, shame and death,
if Christ was willing to die for all,
who are we willing to die for?