Wood and Metal

Psalm 22; Isaiah 52:13–53:12; Hebrews 10:16–24; John 19:16–30

Perhaps instead of , it should be Great Friday. The greatness of God succumbed willingly to the , , and hatred of humanity. The purpose was to provide a path for humanity to to God that humanity had abandoned.

We could talk about all the theology of the cross. We could talk about the theology of atonement. There’s the Justification Theory. There’s the Penal Theory. There’s the Ransom theory. There’s the Relational Theory. There’s the theory.

They are all great theories. All of them have an aspect of the in them. Until we meet God face-to-face, the of the cross is not something to be understood by the mind of humanity. The mystery of the cross is…a mystery.

All the theories are about “how” it works as if that really matters. That God did it. That is what matters.

Good Friday is that time where we have to face the Truth. We are the reason for the cross. We are the reason that the only blameless human died on a cross.

The cross is morbid. It is brutal. It is death in the midst of life on earth.

I used to lead a Good Friday service. As part of the service, I drove 3 big nails into a wooden cross: BANG, BANG, BANG for each nail. Three hits each for 3 nails. The cross was on a hollow wooden floor. Each hit on a nail could be felt by everyone. That I drove the nails into the cross, into the symbolic representation of the of my Savior, affected me deeply.

After I was done with the teaching, each person was invited to write something on a piece of paper and nail it to the cross. I never read any of them. Not even my kids’ or my wife’s. That was their “thing” to nail to the cross.

Oddly, there was something meaningful to many during that service. It wasn’t publicized, but it grew. I don’t know if it was the Savior Himself that drew them or the act of being rid of a weight that drew them. I do know that people let me know that it was their “favorite” service.

Sounds weird, doesn’t it? Yet, we all seem to know that there is always something else that we need to leave at the cross.


  • What does Good Friday tell you about God? What does Good Friday tell you about how God feels about you?
  • What is something that you need to put at/on the cross, and leave there with your Savior?


Almighty God, we beseech you graciously to behold this your family, for whom our Lord Christ was willing to be betrayed and given into the hands of sinners, and to suffer death upon the Cross; who now lives and reigns with you and the Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Image courtesy of vitanovski