Sunday, 24 September 2000 00:00

The Word of Victory

John 19:30-35 (KJV)

When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost. The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day, (for that sabbath was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. Then came the soldier, and brake the legs of the first, and of the other which was crucified with him But when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake not his legs: But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water. And he that saw it bare record, and his record is true: and he knoweth that he saith true, that ye might believe.

Jesus comes to the end of His time on the cross and cries one word in His original language (tetelestai) translated into three words "It is finished." What was finished?

  1. The Work of Christ is Finished...
    Notice that Jesus said, "It is finished," not, "I am finished." His work has been completed. This is the work He spoke of when he said, "I must be about my Father's business." But what was His Father's business? "This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners" (I Timothy 1:15).
    1. Christ actually saved His people.
      He didn't make it possible for people to save themselves by their own actions. He secured salvation, He secured faith, He secured repentance for His people.
    2. Christ fully satisfied the Father.
      The root word of tetelestai (teleo) is variously translated in the New Testament.
      • It means "an end." (Matthew 11:1) "When Jesus made an end of commanding his disciples.
      • It means "paid." (Matthew 17:24) "Doth not your master pay tribute?"
      • It means "performed." (Luke 2:39) "And when they had performed all things..."
      • It means "accomplished." (Luke 18:31) "All things... shall be accomplished."
      He cried, it is "made an end of," it is "paid," it is "performed," it is "accomplished." Our sins are made an end of, the price of our redemption is paid, all the law of God has been performed, and the work of the Son has been accomplished for us. It is finished!
  2. The Wrath of God Is Finished.
    The context of our text is vivid. Jesus has just experienced the wrath of God. The darkness around the cross illustrated the abandonment of the Son by the Father. This wrath of God and this forsaking of the Son is a picture of hell for the sinner.
    1. The wrath of God is fully satisfied in Christ.
      "It is finished." The anger of a holy God due our sin had been poured out. " (By) grace, He has made us accepted in the beloved (one)" (Ephesians 1:6). "There is no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus" (Romans 8:1).
    2. The wrath of God is forever separated from His children.
      Adam had a coat of skin made for him to cover his nakedness. The lamb of God died in order that we might be covered by His righteousness. As it is written: "For he hath made him (Jesus Christ) to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him" (II Corinthians 5:21).
  3. The Wiles of Satan Are Finished.
    "For this purpose the Son of God was revealed, that he might destroy the works of the devil" (I John 3:8). The devil is a liar and the father of all lies. He will lie about what it takes to be accepted by God. He will lie about you and God's love. "And they overcame him (the accuser of the brethren) by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony" (Revelation 12:11). Look to the cross!

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