Friday, 3 April 2015

Good Friday 2015 - It is finished

I don't know about you, but I live my life in a constant state of busyness. I'm not complaining, I actually like being busy, mostly... I can't cope with being bored, and I kind of like the thrill of riding that busy wave. Consequently, rarely a day goes by without a physical or mental to-do list being written, amended, ticked off, added to etc. etc. etc.

Today is Good Friday, and although it has been busy (just for a little insight I've squeezed in church, service planning, making table cloths, DIY, washing, booking a holiday for 12, learning words to songs, and probably more that I've forgotten), there has still been opportunity for reflection on the magnitude of Jesus' work on the cross. This year, the phrase that has really struck me is Jesus' final words, "It is finished." Other translations might say, "It is accomplished." Essentially it's over, done, complete, sorted, dealt with - you get the picture. 

Before even thinking about what exactly is supposed to be finished that's a pretty incredible thought. When was the last time you completely finished something - no tweaking or updating required, nothing more left on your list, no follow-up project required; absolutely, totally, 100% finished everything you needed to do? Let's just say, I don't want to answer that question. But Jesus, the Son of God, who literally had 'save the world' on his figurative to-do list, was able to say, 'It is finished.' The preacher this morning put it like this, 'Everything done, nothing left to do.' Wow.

John 19:28-30
'Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled,Jesus said, “I am thirsty.” A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.'

So what was finished? Well, that was asked last week in Sunday School, and I'm pretty sure the answer given wasn't the intended interpretation but it was a cracker of an answer. One of the children responded, 'The vinegar?' Great answer, but I think the truth goes a lot deeper. As Jesus suffered physical agony, emotional anguish and spiritual torment, innocently and willingly, I believe he was fighting a very great battle. The final battle in a war which began soon after human life existed. He was fighting for those He loves who are trapped in the brokenness of our world. He became sin, who knew no sin. He became the very thing which separates us from our Heavenly Father, so that nothing need ever separate us again. Yes, guilt, loneliness, fear and death are finished. Sure they still exist in our world until Jesus comes again, but there is no need for them, freedom is ours for the taking. Christ has already done everything to achieve it. It is finished.

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