Friday, April 2, 2021

Paid In Full - A Good Friday Meditation


       Today is what Christians the world-over refer to as "Good Friday". At the church where I pastor, we annually celebrate Good Friday by having what is called "The Seven Sayings of Jesus from the Cross" service. One of the final words Jesus would express before breathing His last is recorded by John the Apostle in John 19:30 -

Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit. 

       In the underlying Greek text of this passage, the words, “It is finished” are one word: “tetelestai”. Moulton and Millgan’s Greek Lexicon, page 630, cites examples from ancient receipts where this word was used to express “payment in full”. Whenever Jesus uttered these words, what exactly was He claiming to have “paid in full”? The Gospels tells us about the events of cross and empty tomb. The Book of Acts contains the preaching of the cross and empty tomb. It is in the New Testament letters and Revelation that we find the meaning of the cross and empty tomb. What follows is a sample of all the benefits of salvation “paid in full” on the cross. As you read each verse below, note the underlined words.

1. Freedom from condemnation. 

Galatians 3:13 "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us—for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”

2. Forgiveness of sins. 

Ephesians 1:7 "In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace."

3. Full pardon. 

Colossians 2:14 "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."

4. Flourishing spiritual life. 

Titus 2:11-12 "For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, 12 instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age."

5. Final defeat of Satan. 

Hebrews 2:14 "Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil."

6. Freedom to live for God. 

1 Peter 2:24 "and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed."

7. Forever adoption. 

Revelation 5:9 “Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals; for You were slain, and purchased for God with Your blood men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation."

When Jesus said those words, all of these, and more, were “paid in full”! Praise be to Him!

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