Minute Meditations of Hope and Encouragement #52

It’s not what you think! It’s not a common word, but it is profound and in various ways occurs at critical places in the New Testament narrative. My favourite word is part of Jesus’ seven sentence sermon, preached over six hours from the cross. What a sermon it was! A seven sentence sermon of prayer, promise, provision, position of substitution, pain, perfection and presentation.

How fitting that the sermon begins with forgiveness and ends with triumph. “It is finished” is one word in the Greek (tetelestai) – and is my favourite word in the New Testament. Consider the narrative; who is this man who washes the glory out of the sun with His blood? Who is this man who promises heaven to a hated and despised thief? Who is this man, who when his heart breaks the rocks of the temple split and the temple curtain is torn asunder. Who is this man that when He dies the graves are opened and the dead live? Who is He?

They stripped Him, but He had already stripped himself 33 years earlier, when He left His Royal garments of glory in heaven above. So this is no new thing. Man’s maker made man. The Lord of the stars hanging between heaven and earth as if He were not fit for either. Born in the place with sacrificial animals, now dying in man’s place as our sacrifice and substitute.

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