“It is Finished!”
The Son of God has taken upon himself human flesh. He has lived a life of perfect righteousness as the Representative of his covenant people. He has been all his life long despised and rejected of men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. His enemies have been many. His friends have been few, and those few faithless. At last he is delivered over into the hands of them that hate him. He is cruelly arrested in the garden and arraigned before the courts of law. They robe him in mockery, strip him in shame, and hold him up as a spectacle of ridicule and scorn.
He is declared to be perfectly innocent. Yet, the cowardly judge delivers him into the hands of his persecutors. It is written, “Pilate delivered Jesus to their will!” He is dragged through the streets of Jerusalem. Those who had killed the prophets would now bring upon themselves the blood of the prophets’ Master.
The God-man is brought to the hill called Calvary and brutally nailed to the cross. The sun burns upon him. His wounds infect his body with scorching fever. God, his Father, whose will he came to perform, whose purpose he now fulfills, whose people he came to redeem, whose glory he came to uphold, his God and Father forsakes him. Suffering all the concentrated anguish of hell, he cries out, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” While he hangs there upon the cursed tree, in mortal conflict with sin and Satan, his heart is broken. His limbs are dislocated. His Father forsakes him. The heavens forsake him. The earth forsakes him. His disciples all forsake him and flee from him. He looks everywhere, but there is none to help. His eye looks all around, but there are none to share his toil. He treads the wine press of the fierceness of the wrath of God alone; and of the people there are none with him.
Yet, on he goes, steadily determined to drink the last bitter dregs of that cup which could not pass from his lips if his Father’s will is to be done. He says, “The Lord GOD hath opened mine ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back. I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting. For the Lord GOD will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed” (Isaiah 50:5-7). For the glory of God, for the honor of his holy law, for the redemption of his people, and in order to complete the work for which he came into the world, the Lord Jesus Christ perseveres in his agony, until at last he cries, “It is finished!” Then he gives up the ghost.
Do you hear this mighty shout of triumph? It is the word of the conquering King. It rings today with all the freshness and force with which it rang two thousand years ago! — “It is finished!” Hear it from the sacred Word. Hear from the Savior’s lips. I pray that you will hear these three words, by the power of God the Holy Spirit, ringing in your very soul. — “It is finished!” Oh, may these blessed words ring out in your heart today. I pray that you may be enabled to enter into the experience of this blessed conquest. As he looks up to God his Father, as he looks around to the wondering angels of light, as he looks down upon Satan and the demons of hell, and as he looks out over the perishing multitudes of men, the Lamb of God declares, “It Is Finished,” testifying to heaven and earth and hell that redemption’s work is done!