Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Outstanding (04/21/11)
TITLE: It is finished
By Dr. Michael Cochran
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This particular crucifixion was unlike any before. Some called this man a prophet, while others said he was the King of Jews and, of course, some called him a blasphemer. It was about 9 a.m. and for the next three hours everything proceeded normally. When the sun was directly overhead, the sky went black, not overcast, but pitch black, so dark you couldn’t see your hand in front of your face. Darkness fell across the city of Jerusalem for three hours. There was screaming, moaning and a crying out of sounds never heard before. Then, just as abruptly as it started, the darkness lifted and sanity returned to the earth. One glance and it was obvious that this man Jesus would not last much longer. The soldiers knew he wouldn’t make it to sundown. His body shook uncontrollably and his chest heaved with every tortured breath.
Then He shouted, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Still the crowd mocked him. Death was drawing near as the moments passed. He whispered, “I thirst.” The soldiers lifted a sponge on a stalk of hyssop dipped in sour vinegar to His lips. You could hear the gurgling of blood in his throat as he moistened his lips and took a deep breath. Then with a quick shout. He breathed out His final words before death, “It is finished.”
How does that final statement Jesus made from the cross affect you and me? Let me share some good news about this outstanding display of love filled with all compassion, all mercy and amazing grace. “It is finished” means the debt was paid, the work was accomplished, the sacrifice was completed. There was nothing more God could do to save mankind. When Jesus died, he died once for all time for the sins of every person who has ever lived, past, present and future.
Since Jesus paid our sin debt in full by His death on the cross. Nothing we do or will ever do can make the slightest difference in our salvation, forgiveness, justification, and full acceptance by God. Simply put. God isn’t trying to sell us salvation. He is offering it free of charge. The only thing left for us to do is accept it or reject it. There is no middle ground between these two propositions. When Jesus said, “It is finished,” he meant it.
“For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 (NLT)
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