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The Death of Jesus.

The Death of Jesus.

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Published by glennpease

John xix. 30. — When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he
said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the

John xix. 30. — When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he
said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the

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Published by: glennpease on Jun 11, 2014
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THE DEATH OF JESUS. BY DR. A. THOLUCK John xix. 30. — When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost. Beloved in the Lord: — We shall consider to-day that portion of the sacred narrative which immedi- ately follows the text of our last meditation. The Lord, knowing that all that the Father had given him to suffer was accomplished, had allowed himself the slight refreshment of a little vinegar to cool his parched lips. And now we read, John xix. 30: " WTien Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he saidy It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.'' "It is finished." Such were the last words of the dying Saviour. And what do these words teach us of him? They teach us that he had accomplished a great, a divine mission; that he had performed a difficult task, and that the end of his work was blessed. As Jesus dies, all is so peaceful and serene in him; and the holy calm which reigns around the parting spirit is transfused to our own soul. So that when, in reading the evangelical narrative, one comes to this passage, a feeling of tranquillity and calm is diffused over one's heart. But the feeling which these words call forth, is not merely a feeling of the repose of Jesus in death ; it is also one of the blessed- SUFFERIGS AD DEATH OF CHRIST. 321 ness of his death. It is a blessed thing to die with such an ''It is finished" upon the lips. And the
question which arises in our minds, as we contem- plate such a scene is, In what way can / hope to attain a death so blessed? And to this question I will answer: By ever living in the strong conviction that we too have in life a great, a divine mission to accomplish, and work to perform; hy heing ever ready to perform that worh, to accomplish that mis- sion, even at the expense of the most painful sacri- fices, and hy deriving strength and consolation from these words of our dying Saviour, ''It is finished,'' That Jesus had a great and divine mission, to accom- plish, we learn especially from these words, "It is finished." On what occasion do we utter these words ? ot when the task we have finished is of small import- ance, for then we scarcely ourselves mark its comple- tion ; but only when we have brought to a termination some great, important work — a work on behalf of which, so long as we were engaged with it, the sym- pathy and attention of the whole soul were enlisted. ow, all the occupations we engage in ought in one sense to be divine, to be of God, for one is our Mas- ter, and all we do should be done in his service. But alas ! we have often two masters ; and, indeed, there are some of whom it may be said, that they have as many masters as they have strong inclinations. In the case of many, what pleasure or fancy dictates, the act obeys. ow Christ never, in any one action of his life, performed his own will. "I came down from heaven not to do mine own will, but the will of him 28 322 SUFFERIGS AD DEATH OF CHRIST. that sent me." "My meat is to do the will of him that sent me." Thus the work which he was sensi- hle of having accomplished, when he cried, "It is finished," was also a work of God. And what was
that work? In order to answer the question aright, we must bear in mind, that he who in his last moments, as he stands on the boundary which separates this world from the world beyond, exclaims, "It is fin- ished," could not then be thinking of any particular actions of his life. On the contrary, his thoughts would be turned upon that one work to which all others were subordinate, and which formed in a special way the work of his life. And Jesus had a life-work to perform. Listen to his words in that passage of the intercessory prayer, where, speaking as one already glorified, he seems to cast a glance over his whole earthly work: "Father, I have glorified thee upon the earth, I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world." The busi- ness of his life was, thus, to manifest the name of God. A name is that by means of which we desig- nate and characterize ourselves for the sake of others ; hence that name is the best selected which gives expression to the most marked and striking feature in the nature of the person named. The name of God had long been inquired after by the nations of the earth. They had applied to the Infinite a thousand names, without ever finding one by which rightly to characterize him. ow Christ has revealed the name of God : he has revealed it by his words and by his SUFFERIGS AD DEATH OF CHRIST. 323 works, in Ms life and in his sufferings. This was the work which was concluded when he cried, "It is finished." Let us, however, direct our attention to what the Evangelist says a little further back; he tells us that Jesus had cried, "I thirst," "knowing that all things were now accomplished." In this place, the "all things" which had been accomplished before Jesus spoke, refer especially to the work of

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