The End that was the Beginning

Finished | Devotion #6: The End that was the Beginning
LaRae Wing | Secretary

“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

In our world of calendars, schedules, and agendas, the word “finished” is often viewed as “over and done with.” It seems to implicate that something has been checked off a list and it is time to move on to the next thing: Get up, work out, make breakfast, balance checkbook, drop kids at school, go to work, finish  project, meet with boss, pick up kids, take daughter to gymnastics, coach son’s softball team, pick up daughter, prepare dinner, clean garage, help kids with homework, put kids to bed, breathe for 5 minutes before trying to complete ten other things that need to be done before bed, write out tomorrow’s schedule, fall into bed for a few hours of exhausted sleep, get up and begin another day with another full schedule.

It seems strange to say it, but Jesus had a checklist too. In order to prove to people that He was truly the Son of God (the Messiah), He had to fulfill the prophecies that were made about His life and death that began as far back as the book of Genesis. Although there were still more prophecies to be fulfilled, Jesus’ list was getting shorter with every event He experienced. Jesus’ death was the perfect and final sacrifice necessary for forgiveness of sin, and even though Jesus spoke the words, “It is finished,” referring to His need to die, Jesus was not “finished.”  In fact, He was just entering the next phase of His work on our behalf.

Jesus’ death on the cross was the determining factor in our ability to have our sins pardoned, yet His work continued. He is eternal; therefore, His work is eternal. The resurrection of Jesus secured our hope of eternal life. That is why Jesus is our Living Savior. No other individual that people worship has been able to conquer death. Jesus Christ established His place as the One, True, and Living Son of God by conquering death and the grave.

The great news is that the perpetual work of Jesus is for us, His children. Hebrews 9:24 says, “For Christ has entered… into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf.” Also, in Romans 8:34 we read, “Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.” Jesus is taking care of us by talking to God about and for us. Just as He was so personally involved in His disciples’ lives while He lived here on earth, we continue to be on His “to do” list while in Heaven. 

The Savior’s task of personal involvement with His children is multifaceted. Not only is He interceding for us to the Father, but Jesus also has told us of His work in John 14:2-3, “In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” Jesus has a plan for us to be with Him eternally. Because of Jesus, “a forever home” is prepared for us when we leave this world behind.

Matthew 16:27 adds, “For the Son of Man [Jesus] is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done.” Jesus is also making preparation for His glorious return to this earth. Then, as Romans 14:11 says, “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” Not one person on this earth will be able to deny who Jesus is.

Do you feel as if your list never ends? Are you stressed because you can never complete the tasks before you? Are you overwhelmed by the length or magnitude of that list? Take a moment and remember that when Jesus said, “It is finished,” He died for you. He rose for you. However, He was not finished; His work for you did not end. Talk to Him; He is interceding! Praise Him; He is preparing! Hope in Him; He is coming!

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