April 10, 2020
“It is finished.”— John 19:30 —
“Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!”— Luke 23:46 —
At the end of this terrible ordeal, Jesus’ agony is punctuated with these final words.
Jesus’ final words resound with both weariness and accomplishment. This day — indeed, this whole life — has been a profound experience of suffering, of emptiness.
Though he was in the form of God, [he] did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.— Philippians 2:6-8 —
And in this humiliating, cursed death, Jesus accomplishes his life’s purpose: to conquer death and sin, and to make us God’s new creation in him. We hear that accomplishment, that victory, in how the cross’s “It is finished!” echoes the finishing of creation in Genesis 2:2. Jesus died on the sixth day and rested in His Father’s hands on the seventh, just as God finished the world on the sixth day and rested on the seventh.
And it is Jesus’ suffering, Jesus’ death, that accomplishes God’s ultimate purpose to redeem all things, restore all things, and reconcile all things to himself. That is what it means that the cross is the victory.
And can it be that I should gain
An int’rest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain?
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
He left His Father’s throne above,
So free, so infinite His grace!
Emptied himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam’s helpless race!
‘Tis mercy all, immense and free
For, O! my God, it found out me.
Amazing love, how can it be
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me!