Monday, April 29, 2019

It Is Finished!

Part 2 of No Greater Love

Text: John 19:28-30

When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit (v. 30). 

What Was Finished?

Just before Jesus died, he cried out, “It is finished”! (v. 30). What was finished? 

After Jesus said, “It is finished,” he “bowed his head and gave up his spirit” (v. 30). Was Jesus saying that his life was finished?

No, what Jesus really meant was that his work was finished (“After this, Jesus, knowing that all was now finished…”, v. 28). He was saying, “Mission accomplished!” His mission was to suffer and die for the sins of the world.

Thirsting to Complete His Mission

Before Jesus said, “It is finished,” he said, “I thirst” (v. 28). Why does John tell us this?

First, he wanted to emphasize the humanity of Jesus.

Second, he wanted to portray Jesus as the innocent sufferer. “I thirst” connects the suffering of Jesus to Psalm 69: “For my thirst they gave me sour wine to drink” (v. 21).

Third, I also think that there might be a connection between “I thirst” and “It is finished.”

Earlier in John’s Gospel, Jesus said, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me [i.e., the Father] and to accomplish his work” (4:34). To hunger or thirst for something means to desire that thing. You could say, “I thirst for a cold drink.” Or you could say, “I thirst for righteousness” (cf. Matt. 5:6).

The number one desire of Jesus was to “accomplish” the work the Father had sent him to do. And when that work was finished, he said, “I thirst.” He had completed his mission, and now he could drink.

The Work Is Already Done

Many people think that Christianity is about doing lots of good things in order to gain acceptance with God. If that’s true, why was the cross necessary?

Jesus died on the cross to do everything that needed to be done to make salvation possible for us. Everything has been done. “It is finished”

He Gave Up His Life

Jesus “bowed his head and gave up his spirit” (v. 30). “Gave up” indicates that the death of Jesus was voluntary. He had declared, “No one takes [my life] from me, but I lay it down of my own accord” (John 10:18).

There is no greater love than the love of Jesus. “Love so amazing, so divine, / Demands my soul, my life, my all.”

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