It Is Finished

“It is finished!” Jesus’s final words on the cross is one of the most powerful statements in the Bible. But what exactly was finished? And why did Jesus have to die?

WHY JESUS DIED

The Bible says that without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins (Hebrews 9:22). Because God is just, he cannot ignore our sins, but because he loves us, he sent his son, who was sinless, to die in our place, so we could receive salvation and eternal life (John 3:16). “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23).

We do not have to suffer the penalty for our transgression because Christ purchased our freedom with his precious blood. One of the clearest pictures of redemption in the Bible is the release of Barabbas.

The religious leaders had arrested Jesus because they were envious of him, and even though Jesus was innocent, they brought him before Pilate, the Roman governor, to have him executed. Pilate found no fault with Jesus and sought to release him. He asked the people if he should release Jesus to them because it was Passover, and it was customary to release a prisoner during that holiday.

The people shouted for Pilate to crucify Jesus and to release another prisoner, Barabbas, who was a murderer. In many ways, we are all like Barabbas. We are guilty of sin and deserve to die, but Jesus went to the cross in our place, so that we could live.  

Jesus was whipped until his back was torn up, and the soldiers spat on him and pressed a crown of thorns into his head. They crucified him, nailing his hands and feet to the cross. And “one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water” (John 19:34). The Bible says, “he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5).

WHAT HE FINISHED

Knowing his mission on earth was accomplished, Jesus said, “I thirst.” So, they gave him some vinegar, and “when Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost” (John 19:30).

When he said it is finished, darkness descended on the earth for several hours, and the veil in the Temple was ripped in half, which meant that the way into the presence of God was now open to both the Jews and the Gentiles.
 
The ground began to shake, and the thunder started to roll because the Son of God offered himself up as the spotless lamb of God. He laid his life down willingly, so we could be free from the grip of the devil. He said, “No man taketh it (my life) from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father” (John 10:18).

The Jewish system of sacrificing lambs to atone sin was now fulfilled in Jesus’s death because Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice for the sins of the world. He is our Passover lamb, and when we believe in his name, his blood covers our wrong, and death and judgment must pass on.

THANK GOD FOR THE BLOOD

I dare somebody to lift your hands to heaven and say, “I thank God for the blood.” Because of the blood of Jesus, we can receive salvation, forgiveness of sins, and healing in his name. We do not have to suffer eternal condemnation, but we can live forever in his presence.

Through his death, Jesus destroyed the power of the devil. He pulverized the gates of hell and took the keys of death. “And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it” (Colossians 2:15).

Jesus rose from the dead on the third day, and he said, “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth” (Matthew 28:18). He did not remain in the grave. He is risen and because he lives, we will also live again.

God bless,
Pastors Sean and Aimee Pinder

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