The manner in which Jesus was crucified makes for harrowing reading. It hardly bears thinking about, so awful was the suffering of our Lord and Saviour. Yet Christians refer to that day as "Good Friday". I can understand why Christians celebrate the resurrection, and call it "Easter Sunday" or "Resurrection Sunday".

But why name the day of Jesus' death as "Good Friday"? What was good about it?

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    Good question Lesley, but it would be better to post it on the Christianity site, as it is not a biblical hermeneutic question. – Bagpipes Mar 6 at 15:09
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    The question may be valid, but it is off topic. Not a biblical scriptural question for hermeneutics. – Gina Mar 6 at 15:22
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    Thanks, both - will take your advice. – Lesley Mar 6 at 15:26
  • I suggest you change "Christians" for "English-speaking Christians". It has different names in different languages, many where the qualifier is not "good". – Martin Argerami Mar 7 at 3:51

The word "good" used to carry the meaning of "holy". Good Friday means Holy Friday. It was a holy day because Jesus died on the cross.

John 19:31

Now it was the day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath. Because the Jewish leaders did not want the bodies left on the crosses during the Sabbath, they asked Pilate to have the legs broken and the bodies taken down.

[the] day of Preparation,
Παρασκευὴ (Paraskeuē)
Noun - Nominative Feminine Singular
Strong's Greek 3904: The day of preparation, the day before the Sabbath, Friday. As if from paraskeuazo; readiness.

Another possibility is that it was good that Jesus died for us. It led to the resurrection of Jesus and victory over death.

A 3rd possibility is that Good Friday means God Friday.


A common folk etymology incorrectly analyzes "Good Friday" as a corruption of "God Friday" similar to the linguistically correct description of "goodbye" as a contraction of "God be with you"

  • Regarding the OP question, also note that in other languages the name used is indeed the equivalent of Holy Friday: Vendredi saint, Viernes Santo, Venerdì santo, Sexta-feira Santa... – Ángel Mar 7 at 2:15
  • Great. Thanks for the helpful info. – Tony Chan Mar 7 at 15:04

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