Finished; March 31, 2018

John 19:30 When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

This is perhaps the most momentous event in human history. The Christ, a coequal member of the Godhead, took the sins of all mankind on Himself and atoned for them. It is oddly appropriate that the words He used were no different than what anyone would use for completing even a trivial task, because Jesus never put on airs; He was the most authentic person who has ever lived. We really have great difficulty grasping the magnitude of what He accomplished in that moment, and in the time leading up to it. It had started in a stable in Bethlehem, or actually in Mary’s womb nine months earlier. Omnipotent, omniscient God had taken on human form, out of the purity and totality of His love for us His creatures, and here that climaxed in His taking the penalty for our rebellion and pride, opening through His body the way for our salvation by faith. It was important that He rose three days later, certainly, but first He had to die, so that we might live. As the song says, “Amazing love! How can it be that Christ my God would die for me?”

I am no more worthy of such love and sacrifice than anyone else. My biggest problem is in being so familiar with the story that I am numbed to it. I need to let the Holy Spirit refresh it in my mind and spirit so that I may respond more fully and accurately. As a pastor I am charged with keeping this awareness fresh in the hearts of the believers as well. Tomorrow we will be having an early interdenominational service at a martyrdom site, but several of our members have perfectly legitimate reasons they can’t be there. We will be having our regular service at 10:30, but I am not capable in myself of imparting the significance, the magnificence, of Christ’s sacrifice and resurrection. Once again I am totally dependent on the Holy Spirit, but He has used me before, and I trust He will do so again. The point is that this is about God, from our standpoint, but for Him it was all about us. It is absolutely mind boggling that the Creator would love us so much, so I’ve got to ask and let Him get this truth past our minds and into our spirits, so that we may live accordingly.

Father, thank You for this reminder, for the celebration of resurrection, and for Your infinite love. Help me be so transformed by that love that I become an effective channel for You to pour through me to others, imparting saving faith to them as well, for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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