Good Friday

By Herbie Newell, President and Executive Director of Lifeline Children’s Services.

Today’s headlines scream from a world that is crippled and plagued by sin. Jesus told us to expect wars and rumors of war. Along with wars, we are experiencing the redefinition of the family, complete and utter confusion over the Imago Dei, and murder raging in the hearts and actions of men. In this world broken by sin, disagreement is the norm and rarely the exception.

Sin corrupts absolutely and destroys everything that God calls good. Our sin greatly impacts our families and trickles down to injure and hurt the weakest among us – children. Our children have become laboratories for adults’ confusion and sinful practices as the world attempts to justify gender confusion with life-altering surgery and slaughters babies in the womb out of mere convenience. Children are dying as a result of missiles striking orphanages and train stations in Ukraine, while children in the U.S. are losing parents from murder sprees in subways. Sin is pervasive, damaging, deadly, and destructive – and our children are not immune.

James 3:16, “For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.”

Continually, sin weaves a tapestry of brokenness, confusion, and vile practice. We have forgotten how to blush as a constant stream of movies, entertainment, and politicians call evil good and good evil. Preference and relativism replace absolute truth through the deceptive nature of sin which continually leads us to reject the perfect order of an infinite God.

Romans 1:29-31, “They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, and maliciousness. They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless.”

The Apostle Paul summed up the totality of sin’s corrupting effect. Sin impacts every element of the human condition – every relationship, desire, and physical reality. Born into sin, we continually grow in sin and turn away from the Author and Creator of our souls.

Beloved, this is the sin that was thrust upon Jesus at the cross of Calvary on Good Friday. The sinless, perfect, and spotless lamb bore the penalty to set us free from the wrath of God into a life of grateful service to the Father.

A marred creation and a sin-sick world should not surprise or shock us. Sinners sin and lost people act lost. And such were we before we were washed by the blood of Christ. Because of the Gospel, we are now pilgrims and refugees looking forward to the coming Kingdom, knowing this sinful world is not our home.

Good Friday is good because of the work of Jesus. He brings us hope for a fallen world and for our souls. Our witness must echo that of the Centurion at the foot of the cross when Jesus died – “truly, this is the Son of God.” We must spread the hope of the gospel.

Beloved, this Good Friday we must take heart and take action. We of all people know of the coming Kingdom and must speak out for life created in the image of God. We must demonstrate gospel-driven justice for the orphan, widow, poor, vulnerable, and stranger.

We must speak up and reach out in the love of Christ and demonstrate the good news of Jesus through our gospel-driven justice. As we go, we offer a taste of Jesus’ coming Kingdom onto the lips of those around us.

It’s like the Japanese Hibachi restaurant at the food court of every local mall, pre-COVID. We all remember the restaurant employee standing in the corridor giving out samples of teriyaki and bourbon chicken for one simple reason. The chicken was not meant to satisfy your hunger, but to leave you craving more. 

If we live lives of radical obedience to Jesus, we will be ignored by some, hated by others, and mocked just like the guy hawking the chicken at the mall; however, to those who take notice and sample the glory of God, Lord willing, they will develop a thirst for which only the grace of God will satisfy.

This is not our home, so instead of blending in with this world, let’s live in such a way as to demonstrate that we are aliens and visitors who are longing for our true home. We are citizens of another Kingdom: a home where the image-bearers of God live in the presence of the true King.

Good Friday brings us face to face with the ghastliness of sin. Let us remember this Good Friday to grieve our sin and its effects on the perfect creation of God; however, let the grace of God propel us to take this hope to the hopeless and downtrodden. We cannot be derailed by the headlines nor shrink back into faux safety, but we must forge ahead with the message of the cross to those who are perishing because they have never heard.

We must preach the gospel to the orphan, vulnerable woman and child, and broken family. Let Good Friday fuel the mission and remind us that we have the greatest hope won for us by our Savior on the cross of Calvary in Jerusalem.

Hebrews 10:39, “But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls.”

Responding to the call of the gospel in our lives should give us great courage and effective witness to follow the commands and examples of Jesus who didn’t shrink back in the face of the greatest adversity. Our Lord has called us to be counter-cultural as we defend the sanctity of life, as we embrace our racial and ethnic differences as imprints of the Imago Dei, and as we seek justice for the defenseless, the orphan, widow, poor, and needy. Rest assured that the same God who calls us, will equip us and grant us great courage to carry out this work.

Will you join us? We need you to lean into the hope of Jesus offered on this Good Friday and partner with Lifeline in our mission to manifest the gospel to orphans and vulnerable women and children because we are here…

…to defend the fatherless.


Herbie Newell

President/Executive Director