This time almost 2000 years ago it went dark in the middle of the day (from 12pm to 3pm). It was as Jesus was dying on the cross. Why did this happen? Darkness in the Bible often is a sign of God's judgment (e.g. Exodus 10:21-29), but who was God judging at the cross? Who was God punishing? The surprise is that His holy anger was being poured out on his own Son - that's why Jesus cried out "My God, my God why have you forsaken me."
But why would God be angry at Jesus? Surely he is the beloved Son who never did anything wrong? That is true, but at the cross Jesus willingly took our place, a bit like Lt. Col. Arnaud Beltrame swapped places with Julie in the hostage situation last week. Jesus stepped into our place and was punished for every time we've not loved God and neighbour as we should. What an incredible swap. You're very welcome to join us to reflect on this at our Good Friday Reflections tonight in Lavey Church at 8pm, our choir will be singing a song about this, here's some of the words:
Now the daylight flees,
Now the ground beneath
Quakes as its Maker bows His head.
Curtain torn in two,
Dead are raised to life;
'Finished!' the victory cry.
This, the power of the cross:
Christ became sin for us,
Took the blame, bore the wrath:
We stand forgiven at the cross.