Spoiler Alert: He is risen!

Spoilers are the worst!1 I think the reason that spoilers are so offensive is they cannot be undone; once something has been spoiled it can't be unspoiled. You can't unlearn something. You can't unruin a surprise. Spoilers take away an element of surprise, of drama, of wonder. They have the potential to transform moments from overwhelmingly emotional experiences and reduce them to trivial tidbits of information.

Remember the first time you learned who Luke's father was2, that Bruce Willis was dead the whole time, and it really was Earth the whole time. Even watching one of these movies the second time isn't the same. The experience is so much different when you don't know the outcome. Every moment is filled with wonder, uncertainty, and vulnerability. This is how real life works. We don't know the ending, we can't skip ahead and see the outcome.

It is easy for the glory of Easter to overshadow the passion of Good Friday. While Easter is the most powerful day in history Good Friday is the most poignant day in history. Christ died for us, "the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God."3 God has the power to conquer sin and death, to rescue us from eternal suffering, but to do so without Christ's death on the cross would go against his own nature. Christ's death on the cross not only shows God's love for us but also his righteousness, justice, and glory.4 

I often wonder what it must have been like to experience the very first Good Friday.5 When we think of Good Friday now it is impossible to separate it from the glory that is Easter Sunday. Good Friday has been spoiled for us. It isn't a surprise, we know the twist ending, we can turn the page and see what happens next. What was going through the minds of people who were there?

What did Peter feel when he was asked if he followed Jesus and chose to deny him?
What must it have been like for Barabbas, condemned to suffering and death, to be set free and have his punishment placed on Jesus?
What did the crowd feel as they stood around Jesus, while he hung on the cross, and mocked him?

How similar are my daily actions to their actions on that day?
How do we respond in light of the cross and all that it reflects: the love, power, righteousness, and glory of God?

"Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart." 6

1 This is a hyperbole. There are plenty of things that are worse than spoilers.
2 Spoiler

3 1 Peter 3:18 ESV
4 Romans 3:25-26 ESV
5 "It Is Finished - Good Friday"
6 Hebrews 12:2-3 NIV
Image from Stephen Proctor