GOOD FRIDAY REFLECTION: “Dead” is not the end

Dead! Dead! Dead! We tend to use the word “dead” more than we sometimes think, since to most of us, death is not usually one of the most favourite topics for public speaking or not usually a welcome topic. For those of us who drive, we come across dead end signs when driving, and for those of us who work in the office – we tend to have a place for dead files; also journalists are always rushing to meet the deadline.

In all these cases, the word “dead” implies an end of some kind: end of the road; end of an order/programme; end of time to write an article or to broadcast a story. And “dead’ means just that: no more, finished, done, over, finito, caput.

No doubt that when the soldiers came to Jesus’ cross “and saw he was already dead,” they too thought no more, finished, done, over. They felt that there was no need of breaking the leg to speed up the process of death. I guess their words were “this one is gone, let’s just carry out the thrust of the sword”.
But how wrong they were!

With Jesus, “already dead” isn’t the end. The cross is not only the instrument of the death of Jesus, but better to be viewed, as the sweet wood of exaltation, salvation, and reconciliation.

On this day, we need to silence ourselves and ask again and again who was this man, this man of sorrow; this man of suffering?

And why did he have to undergo all off this?

Of course, we Christians know the answers. But sometime it calls us to do more. This is why I love Good Friday service. I love the sombre and solemn atmosphere: we need to quiet our mind and soul so that the answers can resonate in an innovative and new way; that the answers will find a new way in our spirit; that the answers will awaken and find an inner room in our conscience; that place, deep within where we tend to connect with God; that place deep within where God speaks in the silence of our being.

We must then live in gratitude and love. We need to show appreciation that we have been redeemed; that Christ has transformed us from within and he has opened the gates of heaven for us.

When we ponder what Christ has done for us, this can only create a wellspring of love, gushing out from within: a wellspring of love that purifies and cleanses and returns us to the one who should be at the centre of our life.

We need to be willing to die to ourselves if we want to heal divisions, hurts and pain. We need to be willing to die if we want to love others with the same compassion and mercy that Jesus faithfully showed.

The cross, the mystery of death – calls upon us to the transformation of self, that is the only way to harmony and to lasting peace.

This day – this Good Friday, is a reminder that the road to peace is paved by a cross. This day – this Good Friday, is a reminder that “dead” is no longer the end. Death opens the way for new life, unity and peace.

All of us have betrayed Jesus like those disciples so long ago. The encouragement of this day is that Jesus does not count betrayal as the last word. His last words, “It is finished,” indicate that he had accomplished all that was necessary to heal our divisions, to bring reconciliation among us, and between humanity and his Father.

To live this well, we must surrender ourselves to do as Jesus did – die to self for the sake of others. We actually look for ways to embrace death, to be self-giving, to die to self. This is how we should live. This is how we choose life.

Today is our Lord’s Good Friday. But each of us is called in love to live our own Good Fridays.

Fr. Elton Letang is a Roman Catholic priest from the community of Giraudel.

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11 Comments

  1. March 31, 2018

    Death is final, any contrary belief is stupid mythology.

  2. March 30, 2018

    So then between physical death and spiritual death, they are both defeats, as far as God is concerned, “for it is the Spirit who gives Life, the flesh profits nothing” Jesus did not have to die physically, but His mission would not be completed without that demonstration, the apostle John tells us: “He gave up the Spirit” Therefore as long as Jesus, the Son, held on to Christ, the Father in Him, there could be no physical death, for God cannot die.

    And death was defeated by His resurrection, as He told us through Matha: “I am the resurrection and the Life” before He called her brother Lazarus back to Life after being in the grave for four days. We are called to undergo the New Birth before we live the body through physical death–this is to say that the soul which is bound for Paradise must be alive before it leaves the body, otherwise, it is a completely lost soul, in the body or out of the body. There is no honor for “death”

    • Gary
      April 2, 2018

      Why do you write such foolishness regarding the subject of death which you know nothing about.You have displayed such ignorance regarding the matter.

      • Gary, sometimes I tend to believe you are perhaps a fool, or most of the time you are inebriated: what is wrong with?

        You mind seem corrupted and confused!

        You are condemning Elizabeth comments; She is correct, if you were into the word of God, before you make such silly, and stupid comments you would go into the Bible to find out if there is any truth to substantiate what she has conveyed.

        I am not defending Elizabeth you know because she told me how she hate me eh!

        I am her most hated enemy on this planet eh!

        Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah!

        There is a continued battle, a war going on between me and her, in another forum; but, the fact is your trying to make her wrong, as if she does not know what she is saying, when you are the one who write your one and two line idiotic comments which are not even relevant to the comments you are responding! 

      • Gary
        April 4, 2018

        Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque

        There is the old saying birds of a feather flock together. For something to be correct is has to be based on knowledge and understanding regarding the subject matter, saying Elizabeth is correct simply because of what you refer as the “word of God” does not say she is correct and is utter nonsense, nothing she wrote is based on the “word of God” it’s an opinion based on her religious
        beliefs period.

        When you say I’m corrupted and confused that’s such a silly on your part if any one is confused and corrupt it’s both you and Elizabeth. The confusion is when you both associate religious beliefs for the truth. The corruption is when you both write nonsense or jargon and claim it to be the word of God.

      • Well then Gary, are you suggesting that the scriptures she quoted does not exist in the Bible?

        Or are you suggesting that the scriptures are not the word of God? Clarify  what you are saying because I do not understand you concept!

      • Okay;  let me say this, before you think I am mad: Although she did not quote a chapter and verse in the Bible, what she said regarding Lazarus, and Martha  is plain in the Bible, if you took some time to go into a concordance and research it you would not think the way you do.

  3. March 30, 2018

    Death opens the way for (new Life), unity and peace–News Article

    I have some trouble with that concept, above, in that it seems to be referring to physical death. But everyone will suffer physical death unless we are in the body at Jesus’ return. But we, who in the grave, through physical death will be called to the Judgment Seat, a judgment of many which will be the “second death”

    So does that “second death” means following the death of the body? Not at all! For God said to Adam: “Dust you are and to dust you shall return”

    Adam and Eve, in the Garden of Eden, died spiritually, after they ate the forbidden fruit, for God had said, to them: ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’” But Adam remained in his physical body for 930 years. The Bible tells us that he and his wife had soon and daughters. But then again, the first generations of Adam were destroyed by a flood because of the sinful and evil ways.

    • March 30, 2018

      Correction: “He and his wife had sons and daughters”.

      The second death is the judgment of the soul which leaves the body without the revival, by the Life of Christ Jesus–the Light of men in Spirit and in Truth. It is the process by which we are “born again”

      To avoid the judgment we who are in the body need to receive, believe, and conceive, God’s Word through a consistent, contemplated, study. Jesus told us: “The Words which I speak are Spirit and they are Life.

  4. The Evangelist?
    March 30, 2018

    According to Matt. 1:23, one of His many names is Emmanuel, which means, God with us. Is it a coincidence that as we observe today ‘Good Friday’ in memory of our Lord Jesus Christ, aka known as Emmanuel, who was betrayed by one of his close friends, before he was crucified, today we in Dominica also mourn the death of another Emmanuel, aka GON Emmanuel, who was also probably betrayed by some of his close friends, who walked and ate with him several times. Later in 2010, GON Was set on fire while he and his wife were asleep. After Jesus Emmanuel was crucified, we know that Judas who had betrayed him, hung himself. I do not know who betrayed GON Emmanuel because the court of Dominica failed to give him a fair investigation but, we know for sure that whoever betrayed GON, has been living in utter darkness since 2010 and will eventually do the honorable thing as he thinks of the death of GON EMMANUEL, almost 8 years after GON was betrayed. I hope GON’s death leads him to confession

  5. “No doubt that when the soldiers came to Jesus’ cross “and saw he was already dead,” they too thought no more, finished, done, over. They felt that there was no need of breaking the leg to speed up the process of death. ” (Elton Letang).

    Rubbish, all rubbish!

    There is a difference in religion, and vast difference in the Christianity: In Christianity the word of God speaks. In religion the philosophy of man is preached. The could not have broken the bones of Jesus because it was not ordained him nor the his Father to be so.

    In Psalms 34:19-20 we read:

    19.  “Many are the  afflictions of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them all.
    20.   He keepeth all his bones: not one of them is broken.”

    The Word of God spoke about Jesus crucifixion thousands of years before he came. anywhere in the Bible where “Lord” is written with the upper case L, it is speaking about God Jehovah, hence he is the Father of Jesus.

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