When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. (John 19:30, ESV)

It was now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour, while the sun’s light failed. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” And having said this he breathed his last. (Luke 23:44-46, ESV)

Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith (from Hebrews 12:2).

Finish on streamer

The reality here is incredible to try to realize.  Jesus writes our faith onto our hearts.  Without the cross, without the final act of Jesus taking away sin once and for all by His death, there is no author of our faith.  Without His sacrifice, we are like any other religion or belief system.  We simply have ‘faith in faith’.

But with Christ Jesus, we have infinitely more.  We can have faith in Christ.  The public display of God’s love for us through Jesus reveals His desire for us to have faith in Him.  He could have died for us in a jail cell where we couldn’t have seen what happened.  But as the prophets foretold, He chose to die for us in a public place that could not be ignored–on a hill outside the busiest city in His nation.

If people could somehow ignore Jesus on the cross at Golgotha, they could not ignore the earthquake or the darkness in the sky.  God was showing as clearly as possible that, once and for all, Jesus was dying for the sin of the world.  The Gospel of Matthew even tells us that the tombs broke open during the earthquake (see Matt. 27:52).  When Jesus rose again, many who had trusted God rose, too, further announcing the resurrection life Jesus was offering by His death.

When Jesus said, “It is finished”, He knew every penny of our sin was totally paid, every drop of blood spilled to pay the price, every good work fully accomplished.  Every Word of Scripture was fulfilled, every thought of His Father carried through.  It was all completed, and the infinite grief and agony He had experienced in becoming sin for us (see 2 Cor. 5:21) was over.

There is no greater encouragement during our struggles in this life than to realize that everything important, everything good, and everything beautiful has already been fulfilled through Jesus Christ.

As we run the race to serve Him, we recognize that He has already authored our faith (written the story of His love on our hearts), and He has already finished His trials that give us perseverance of that faith.  Faith begins and ends with Christ and, when we remember that, we can hold on, no matter how tough times get.

The race has already been won.  And now we who believe in Jesus Christ get to follow Him to the finish line.  Amen!!

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:1-2, ESV)

Published in: on March 27, 2014 at 7:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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