The Lord is not nearly as impressed with our beginnings as He is in our finishing what we started.
In thirty years of ministry I have seen people hear a word from the Lord, begin to walk in it, and then fade away. Oh, they had good intentions and had a good start. God opened some doors and provided a means for them to get going. Then the tests came. The enemy began to oppose what they were doing, the journey became more difficult and the sacrifices greater than they imagined. Many simply quit and walk away.
Thank God Jesus didn’t do that. After 3 years of otherwise successful ministry, the tides of opposition began. The religious leaders deemed Him “of the devil”. The Roman government considered Him a threat to Caesar. Judas betrayed Him. Peter denied Him. The disciples scattered when the shepherd was struck. Jesus hung on the cross, His only companions were a thief and a murder hanging on each side of Him.
…Then the final words, “It is finished” from the lips of our Savior.
For Jesus personally, He was declaring His purpose was fulfilled. He was sent as the Lamb of God to suffer and die as a substitutionary sacrifice for our sin. He had run His race well. To those around Him it appeared a tragic ending. To the Jewish religious leaders another “false” prophet was silenced. To Rome, a threat to Caesar had been put down. To the disciples and other followers of Jesus, it appeared everything they had ever hoped for or dreamed of had come to a horrible end.
…Yet every Friday has a Sunday morning coming!
For us, the words “It is finished” means our salvation is complete. The death penalty of the Law had been satisfied. The righteous judgement of God had been carried out on the Son of God Himself. 2 Corinthians 5:21 (NASB95) 21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf.
We are now “debt free” in the eyes of God. Colossians 2:13–14 (NASB95) 13 When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions, 14 having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.
Jesus finished well in the eyes of God. Oh, it took the better part of three days in the tomb before it was revealed, yet the resurrection assures us of the truth. Jesus finished well for you and I.
To hear the complete message on mp3 go to RiverChurchRoanoke.com. Click on media and the title “It is Finished”. You may listen to it there or download it. The best part, its free!