Finished… am I finished?

Ever felt like a cog in a wheel?

What exactly is a cog? It’s one of the tooth-like parts around the edge of a wheel in a machine that fits between those of a similar wheel, causing both wheels to move; cogwheel, a wheel with cogs around its edge, used to turn another wheel or part in a machine.

In human terms, it’s a member of a large organization whose job, although necessary, makes them feel as if they are not important. (https://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/)

“A cog in a wheel is an important element; it keeps the machine running smoothly. If it’s cared for – cleaned, oiled, and polished regularly – it will serve the machine well for years. If it’s not cared for, it will break, bringing the machine to a halt. The breakage may even cause greater damage to other parts of the machine.” (https://www.drivingresultsthroughculture.com/2015/05/18/a-cog-in-a-wheel/)

“Is it time for me to quit?” I asked myself the other night. “Time to quit reading, quit studying, quit writing, quit praying – quit interceding? Is my time on planet earth over? Am I finished?”

I was feeling tired. Exhausted, actually, physically, mentally and emotionally. And a little bored, too. I was feeling like a very unimportant, worn-out old cog in a machine, no longer necessary and easily replaced if broken or removed.

I had been thinking of Jesus’ words in John 19:30, “It is finished.”

What was the IT, I wondered? The IT that was finished? His earth-life existence as a human being? His work as Savior? His sacrifice for sins? What exactly did he mean by that?

I’ve read some opinions on the meaning of that final statement. Here’s one I like:

“Jesus became the final and ultimate sacrifice for our sin. The word in this verse, “finished,” is actually from the Greek word, “tetelestai,” which is the same word that means “paid in full.” Often, it was used in an accounting term, which indicates a debt was paid. The uniqueness about the way it was written is that the tense of the word indicates both a point in time it was complete and that it would also continue to be complete or finished. And this is the essence of what Christ came to do. He came to “finish” God’s work of salvation in us. He came to “pay it in full,” the entire penalty, or debt, for our sins. He’s at work in our world still today in powerful ways.” (https://www.ibelieve.com/faith/the-power-of-jesus-last-words-the-meaning-behind-it-is-finished.html)

But think about this: Some things were not actually finished. Jesus would return as a human being in a few days, remaining on planet earth for a few more weeks. At the moment on the cross when Jesus said “Finished,” he had not yet presented his blood in heaven so his sacrifice for sins wasn’t finished; his work as Savior was not complete.

His ministry to human beings wasn’t done either. More was still to come on the day of Pentecost! And beyond that, his ministry as intercessor for believers is a never-ending assignment.

Of course, none of those things could have been realized had Jesus not actually died on the cross — died body, soul and spirit. In that regard IT was indeed finished. The debt we owed was truly PAID IN FULL.

As I meditated on all this, the Holy Spirit began to talk to me.

“Finished, hmmm? Just an old cog? Unimportant? Unnecessary?” He began to show me a few examples of old cogs, the way He sees them.

  • Abraham and Sarah — parents at 100 and 90 years of age; think they needed to be re-energized?
  • Moses — failed son of Pharoah’s daughter who became a shepherd in a foreign land; recalled to be deliverer of Israel at age 80.
  • David — many long years running for his life from King Saul, chased, persecuted; tired?
  • Zachariah and Elizabeth, John the Baptist’s parents — elderly new parents whose son became a “wild man” living in the desert.

I’m sure they’d all prayed, waited and wondered; wondered if IT was finished, whatever IT was in their lives.

Things to think about.

It Is Finished!

Finished“When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.” John 19:30 (KJV)

“Finished” is the Greek word “tetelestai” and comes from the verb “teleo.” It is translated “accomplished” in some verses. (See below)

According to Bible.org, “Tetelestai was written on business documents or receipts in New Testament times to indicate that a bill had been paid in full. The Greek-English lexicon by Moulton and Milligan says this:

Receipts are often introduced by the phrase tetelestai, usually written in an abbreviated manner… (p. 630).

The connection between receipts and what Christ accomplished would have been quite clear to John’s Greek-speaking readership; it would be unmistakable that Jesus Christ had died to pay for their sins.”

Strong’s Concordance has this definition:

  • To bring to a close, to finish, to end; passed, finished
  • To perform, execute, complete, fulfill, (so that the thing done corresponds to what has been said, the order, command etc.)
  • With special reference to the subject matter, to carry out the contents of a command
  • With reference also to the form, to do just as commanded, and generally involving the notion of time, to perform the last act which completes a process, to accomplish, fulfill
  • To pay, as of tribute

Jesus said “It is finished.” What was “IT?”

Jesus only did what he saw God the father do or what the father told him to do. He did it in the way that he was supposed to, whether it was a task, a chore, or an assignment. And whatever he started, he completed. According to Jesus himself, that included:

  • To fulfill the scriptures
  • To take on our sins, our trespasses, the guilt and the punishment – payment – for them
  • To take on our diseases, ailments, sicknesses, weaknesses, pains
  • To reclaim the authority over planet earth that Adam traded away

“But I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished!” Luke 12:50

“Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. ” Luke 18:31

“For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, ‘And he was reckoned among the transgressors:’ for the things concerning me have an end.” Luke 22:37

“After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst.” John 19:28

“…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.” Colossians 2:14 NASB

“Who his own self bore our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness; by whose stripes ye were healed.” I Peter 2:24

“For he hath made him, who knew no sin, to be sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” II Cor. 5:21

“And Jesus came and spoke unto them, saying, All authority is given unto me in heaven and in earth.” Matthew 28:18

KeysToHellAndDeath“When I saw Him, I fell at His feet like a dead man. And He placed His right hand on me, saying, ‘Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last, and the living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and of Hades.'” Rev. 1:17-18

It, all of the above, is accomplished. Paid in full.

FINISHED.