We begin our journey toward discovering all that was meant by Jesus’ declaration that “It is finished” with something I’m not very good at, but love to learn – the use of language.
This fascinates me. Stay with me and I believe you’ll see the value in this language lesson, as well. The phrase “it is finished,” (which is a single Greek word – tetelestai) is in the perfect passive indicative. Here’s what that means:
Perfect tense: the action was completed in the past with results continuing in full effect in the present. While Jesus finished the work that day, the results are still in full effect today.
Passive voice: indicating that Jesus is receiving or subjected to an action without responding or initiating a response. The work that Jesus was doing was in the passive sense. He was not fighting against finishing the work. He was receiving the Father’s judgement of sin.
Indicative mood: the act that took place or condition is an objective fact. The work that Jesus finished was definite and real.
Today’s Good News is that while this specific event – Jesus declaring all of the work complete – occurred some 2,000 years ago, the power of that work is still in full force in our lives right now!
As we begin to dive into what is finished by Jesus, we can rest assured it wasn’t just for a moment in time – it was completed for all of us, for all time. This is true whether we believe it or not. Jesus’ accomplishment is not dependent upon our belief. What is dependent upon our belief is whether we recieve the results of His completed work in our lives.
For those who believe, which is the only work Jesus says we have to do (John 6), everything we look at over the coming days is a surety in our lives – that’s what the “indicative mood” tells us. It’s real! And that’s really Good News!
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