Good Friday

by Eric D. Huntsman, cross posted at

Good Friday is observed with great solemnity in some Christian traditions.  While not marked as a holiday as such in the LDS community, Good Friday can be a tender and reflective time for individuals and families to pause and consider how Jesus, as our great high priest, offered himself as a sacrifice for us: “Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us” (Hebrews 9:12).  Understanding how and why he died makes the miracle of his resurrection on Easter morning all the more glorious and joyous.

Customarily, the day Jesus died on the cross is called “Good Friday” in English, either because it is a “holy” Friday, or, more likely, because in English “good” is often an archaic expression for “God.”  For instance, “goodbye” means “go with God.”  Accordingly, the Friday before Easter is “God’s Friday” because this day saw the

Garden Tomb stone

Garden Tomb stone

culmination of God’s efforts to reconcile the world to himself through the death of his Son.  The apostle Paul described it this way:

But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.  For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.  And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement. (Romans 5:8–12).

The gospel narratives all agree that Jesus was first tried before Pilate, the Roman governor.  Luke adds that he was also questioned by Herod Antipas, the client ruler of Galilee. During his trial and after his conviction, Jesus was mocked and physically abused before being led to the place of crucifixion, where, after hanging on the cross for three to six hours, he died.  He was then hastily buried in a borrowed tomb.

Scriptural Accounts: Matt 27; Mark 15; Luke 23; John 18:28–19:42; see also 3 Nephi 8

The Garden Tomb

The Garden Tomb


Episodes for Personal Study

  • Jesus in the Hands of the Romans (Mark 15:1–19; Matt 27:1–30; Luke 23:1–25; John 18:29–19:15)
  • Jesus is Crucified (Mark 15:20–28; Matt 27:31–38; Luke 23:26–34, 38; John 19:16–24)
  • Jesus’ Final Hours (Mark 15:29–37; Matt 27:39–50; Luke 23:35–46; John 19:25–30)
  • Signs and Reactions to Jesus’ Death (Mark 15:38–41; Matt 27:51–56; Luke 23:47–49; John 19:31–37)
  • The Burial of Jesus (Mark 15:42–47; Matt 27:57–66; Luke 23:50–56; John 19:38–42)