Easter’s Word of Victory – “It is Finished!”

“When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, ‘It is finished.’” — John 19:30

A.W. PinkWhen Christ said these words – “It is finished” – we view the glorious triumph of the cross.  The ancient Greeks boasted about being able to communicate a big thought while using few words. They would often say, “The perfection of a great speech is to give an ocean of substance in a single drop of language”. What the Greeks looked for in a powerful speech is found in these final few words of Christ – “It is finished.” In the original Biblical language, this statement is actually only one word. Yet in that one word is the entire Gospel of God. That one word contains the ground of the believer’s assurance. That one word describes the sum of all joy. In that one single word, we find the very spirit of all Godly comfort. In that one word, we find rest.

“It is finished.” 

Many have often said that every cloud has a silver lining.  If that is true, then this darkest of all possible clouds – the death of Christ – has the most beautiful silver lining ever imagined.  First, the cross shows us the profound depths of Christ’s humiliation and suffering. This of course, is the horrendous cloud. But in the cross we also see the glorious triumph of Christ’s resurrection and ultimate victory over sin, shame, and death.   This is the magnificent silver lining. In that one word, light triumphs over shadow; ultimate beauty emerges from the ashes of suffering.

“It is finished.”

To be sure, this final emphatic word of Christ is not the despairing cry of a helpless martyr. It was not Christ’s expression of relief that His sufferings were over. It was not the last gasp of a worn-out life.  It was not the death rattle of a dying man. No! That one word was a thunderous declaration by the Glorious Redeemer that everything that He came from heaven to do, was now done; that everything that was needed to reveal the full character of God, was now accomplished; that everything that was required to save sinners, had now been performed—that the full price of our redemption was paid in full. In that one word, Christ expresses the full completion of his victory.

“It is finished.”

The great purpose of God in the history of man was now complete. From the beginning, God’s purpose has always been toward one great end. His purpose was declared to men in various ways: in shadowy symbols and through clear proclamation, in mysterious hints and through plain speech, through Messianic predictions and through outright declaration. That purpose: To display His grace – and to magnify His Son – who by his perfect life, suffering, death, and resurrection would create a people who would bear his image and display his glory. In that one word, this purpose was complete.

“It is finished.”

What was finished? Christ’s sacrificial work was finished. The wrath of God had been satisfied. When Christ cried out – “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” – at that moment, our Savior bore the horror of hell, he bore our sorrows, he bore our iniquities, and the judgment of us all fell upon him when Jesus bore the penalty for our sins. At that moment, God the Son received the justifiable wrath of God. The darkness was over, the awful cup was drained, His precious blood was shed, and full justice was served. In that one word, the sacrificial work of the Savior was complete.

“It is finished.”

This Easter, take great comfort in this majestic final word of your Savior! King Jesus has spoken! Our rest is secured! Our sins are forgiven! Our glory is won!

“It is finished!”

– Pastor Tim (paraphrased from A.W. Pink)

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