Most of Selma's churches are Christian. Here, a cross and cloak stand in front of Church Street United Methodist Church in the weeks preceding Easter. They represent the cross of Calvary where Jesus was crucified for claiming to be the Messiah, the long-promised Savior, who is also God incarnate. But, many religious leaders disagreed and accused Him of blasphemy.
"Again the High Priest asked Him, saying unto Him, "Are You the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?"
Jesus said, "I am. And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven."
Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, "What further need do we have of witnesses?
You have heard the blasphemy! What do you think?" And they all condemned Him to be deserving of death.
"Then some began to spit on Him, and to blindfold Him, and to beat Him, and to say to Him "Prophesy!" And the officers struck Him with the palms of their hands.
(from Mark 14: 61b-65, The Bible - New Testament)
While the death of Jesus seemed terribly tragic to his followers, it was necessary for the completely innocent Son of God to sacrifice his life for the sins of everybody in the world. Since there is nothing that we can do to earn our way to Heaven, Jesus became the "sacrificial lamb" and willingly took the punishment that every person deserves. Only those who place their faith in Jesus as Savior and Lord receive the free gift of eternal life with Christ.
"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God." John 3: 16-18 (The Bible, New Testament)
So, the Good News that a Savior would deliver us from our sins was fulfilled on Good Friday.
Stay tuned for the resurrection and new life.