What Jesus Says to a Complacent Church

Good Friday Message

April 30, 2020

John 19:30 records Jesus’ last words – “it is finished”. Later, as the early Christians read John's Gospel and heard those words again, it dawned on them just how powerful these dying words of Jesus were. “Tetelestai” is the Greek translation of Jesus’ words – it was part of the common language of the time carrying the idea that something (a job, a temple sacrifice, a transaction, a work of art, a task) was completed; there was nothing further to do. When Jesus spoke those final words, he wasn't just saying - "this is the end of me", as if there was nothing else to do but to give in to his enemies and die. His last words weren't a final surrender to the powers of evil as if to say - "you've won. I'm done for". These words don't tell us that Jesus was dead now and that's all there is to it; he's finished and so is everything that he stood for and promised during his earthly life. All those who heard the word – “tetelestai” understood that Jesus was saying that his job of saving the world has been completed? He has finished that task and nothing can be added to what has been done. Jesus has paid the price in full; he has cancelled all debt. His sacrifice has been a perfect one, acceptable to the heavenly Father who looking down on his Son hanging lifelessly from the cross said - "This is my dear Son with whom I am well pleased". “Tetelestai - it is finished. Everything is complete!”

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