It is finished (John 19:30) (L)

“When Jesus had received the wine, he said, It is finished. Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.” The first thing that comes to my mind here is that Jesus’ death was an act of will. (I’ve known other people who chose to die at a certain point, and did.)

Pursuing this idea Jesus might also have gone on living if he had chosen to. The fact that they put him to death was with his consent, and otherwise they couldn’t have.

When Peter struck off the ear of the servant of the high priest Jesus said, “Matt 26:53 Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?”

And remember also what he said immediately before: “all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.” (This makes me tremble for our country.)

Recall also in Luke’s version that “22:51 …. And he touched his ear, and healed him.”

Looking also at Matthew’s version of Jesus’ last moment we read:
27:50 Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.

27:51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;

27:52 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,

27:53 And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.

The veil of the temple represented the separation of God from most of us; the high priest was supposed to enter the Holy of Holies once a year. When Jesus completed his mission to us, it ended that separation between God and man. This is at least part of the reason that Quakers don’t have priests; we have direct access. (Wow! I just noticed “and the earth did quake”. Indeed!)

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3 responses

  1. The first comment here came from Ellie: reflecting on the course of Jesus’ life she pointed out that it illustrates the new birth which he taught, as reported in John 3:1-8.Jesus died to the flesh, and was reborn as a spiritual presence in our lives. In fact he told us that’s what it was about; again and again he told his disciples that he must leave so that the Spirit could come; i.e. from one expression of God to the other.In the same way we die to the world in order to be born to God.

  2. Hi Larry. You said … he told his disciples that he must leave so that the Spirit could come; i.e. from one expression of God to the other.I can’t help thinking that the disciples would have rather kept Jesus around in the flesh. With the trinity, you get all three and don’t have to give up one (Jesus) to get the other (the holy spirit) 🙂

  3. That’s very true, Crystal, but for the moment think about the rest of humanity. If Jesus had stayed there in the flesh, he would have been a blessing to those around him. Leaving to provoke the activity of the Holy Spirit he has been a blessing to all mankind.It’s certainly true to say we don’t have to give up Jesus to get the Holy Spirit, but Jesus intimated that was the problem facing first generation Palestine. His passing led to the Pentecostal event (Acts 2). Could it have been otherwise?

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