“When Jesus had received the vinegar, he said, "It is finished"; and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.” - John 19: 30


Dear Friends in Christ,


“It is finished”, Jesus declared from the Cross.  But, it isn’t his life that is finished, nor his message.  It isn’t the end of hope, and it isn’t a defeat or loss.  When Jesus says, “It is finished”, he is telling us that his mission is over.  Everything that he came to this world to do, has been done.  In deed, he could have said, “It is accomplished!”.  For, Jesus accomplished everything on that day on the Cross.


Jesus came to forgive our sins, and on the Cross Jesus proclaimed, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do”.  Jesus came to destroy death, and when he died on the Cross, he took away death.  Jesus came to bring everlasting life, and on the Cross Jesus promised, “today you shall be with me in paradise”.  In the Apostles’ Creed we confess our faith by saying, “we believe in the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting”.  All these things, Jesus accomplished on the Cross for us.  It is finished!  Forgiveness, the resurrection, life everlasting; Jesus came to give us these things and he finished giving them on the Cross.


Can we believe it?  Not without Easter.  On Good Friday, Jesus accomplished everything for us; but without Easter, we wouldn’t know it.  Without Easter, we wouldn’t know that our sins are forgiven.  In fact, we would live in fear of sin and death.  Without Easter, we wouldn’t know that heaven awaits us.  In fact, we would lose hope.  Without Easter, we would look upon the Cross as defeat.  It would appear that the Devil had won and Jesus had lost, without Easter.


Easter makes all the difference in the world.  It changes our sorrow to joy, our fear to courage, our despair to hope.  The funny thing is, Jesus doesn’t accomplish anything on Easter.  It was all accomplished on Good Friday on the Cross.  Forgiveness and life everlasting, they were given by Jesus on the Cross; and we would have those two things even if Easter had never happened.  But, without Easter; we could never believe it.


My grandfather used to say, “On Good Friday, Jesus paid for our debts.  On Easter, he gave us the receipt”.  From the Cross, Jesus gave us two incredible gifts; forgiveness and life everlasting.  On Easter, we receive the gifts, because we know they are real.  “It is finished”.  Everything has been accomplished.  Easter lets us believe it!  Happy Easter!!

                                                                                                Pastor Ron