Sermon preached on April 5, 1998 (p.m.)
in Hudsonville, Michigan
Rev. Barry Gritters
Scripture reading: John 19:23-42
Just moments before Jesus died, but not immediately before He died, Jesus spoke the sixth cross word, the last but one word of the cross: "It is finished." This is the second to last, not the last cross word.
The story is told of a seminary student early in the history of our denomination who, sitting for his examination at the meetings of synod in order to be declared a candidate for the ministry, was not doing very well. The theological part of that exam was not going very well. He did not do very well in the Bible-historical part of the exam either. In fact, when he came to New Testament history, so it is told, he did so poorly that even the professor began to feel sorry for him and asked him what he supposed would be an easy question because he should at least have learned these things in catechism and Sunday School. "What are the seven words that the Lord Jesus Christ spoke on the cross?" Even there the poor man was flustered and fumbled and was not able to name, even in order, the seven words of Christ on the cross, but said at the end with confidence: "But I know one thing. The last word that Jesus spoke was 'It is finished.'"
He was not denied candidacy because of that, I am sure. But he was wrong even there because the last word of Christ was not "It is finished," even though it sounds like that in the chapter that we read. The last word that Jesus spoke is "Father, into Thy hands I commend My spirit."
To point out to you, so that you may know and you children may learn what words Christ spoke on the cross, "It is finished" is the second-to-last. But it is certainly not the least important and certainly not the least blessed of the words that the Lord Jesus Christ spoke.
"It is finished." All our sins are taken away, Jesus announces here. All our guilt that should have been imputed to us but was imputed to Him was taken care of. And Jesus announced that here. Our salvation is won, our sins are forgiven! How do I know that? How do I know that with certainty? Because the Lord Jesus Christ announced so that all could hear, and the beloved disciple could record it: "It is finished." Jesus did it all. It is all accomplished. It has all been done for you. The Lord Jesus Christ is a complete Savior. He is a sovereign Savior. We hear that from this word: "It is finished." And we can shout, with all of the saints down through the ages, "Hallelujah, it is finished!"
So we understand by this word not that Jesus is saying
here, "I'm finished. I'm done. I'm ended. My life is gone.
I've tried and wasn't able to do it. Now I'm going to go the way
of all flesh." That is not what He meant when He said, "It
is finished." But with a shout of victorious confidence,
the Lord Jesus Christ is saying to us, and to God in our hearing,
"The work that Thou gavest Me to do, the mission that Thou
didst send Me to accomplish, is finished. It is finished!"
It is a shout of victory. It is a cry of obedience, God-centered
obedience. And it is a word that you and I appropriate by a living
faith that God gives us as a gift.
A shout of victory
It is a victorious cry.
We need to say that because at first glance it does not appear to be a victorious cry at all. Appearances as they are, this seems to be a cry of defeat. That is why I said at the very end of my introduction, we may not make a mistake here and suppose that Jesus is saying, "I tried but I failed. It's all done." From a certain point of view, though, we might suppose that that is what He is saying.
Jesus hangs on a cross. His enemy apparently defeated Him. There they stand before Him, mocking Him and challenging Him to come down. And He does not! Apparently cannot. That is their view. Look at what preceded this. The disciples were bitter. They probably were angry. At least they were disappointed. The Lord Jesus Christ does not do what they want Him to do. In a confused state of mind, wondering why Jesus does not let them take the sword, they flee while Jesus allows Himself to be taken by the enemy and without resistance went to the death. Apparently this is not the cry of a victor.
Listen even to the words that Jesus spoke, anticipating what was going to happen here, knowing what was going to happen here: "My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death. Abba, Father, not My will but Thy will be done. Nevertheless, if it is Thy will, if it might be Thy will, take this cup from Me and don't make Me drink this cup." That is what Jesus thought about what was going to happen here. There is no supplicating prayer that was ever raised, people of God, with the fervency that Jesus had when He made this prayer. Being in agony, the Word of God says, He prayed more earnestly and His sweat became as it were great drops of blood fallen down to the ground. And what were those few drops falling in the Garden of Gethsemane but a smear compared to the blood that would flow when now He is arrested and hanged on the cross.
Look what happened. Listen to the sound of the whips and the cracking of His flesh, the splitting of His skin. Listen to the mocking words that are given to Him. Behold the hood over His face. Hear the blows on His chin. See the soldiers lift Him up and nail His hands to the cross. A shout of victory, this? "It is finished?"
Then, do not go on from there without hearing the testimony of God Himself at the cross that would make us suppose this is not a cry of victory, but an agonizing cry of defeat. Listen to the testimony of God here. Listen to what God does not do. There are no bolts of lightning that come down to strike dead the enemies of the Lord Jesus Christ. There they stand alive and well, opening their mouth in cruel mockery of the Lord Jesus Christ. Do you hear any voice from heaven saying now: "This is My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased," so that everyone can hear? He said it before - at the beginning of Christ's ministry. Many heard that. You hear not one word from heaven about the Lord Jesus Christ and His state of being pleasing to God in heaven. And to make matters worse, God shuts the heavens and it is dark from high noon until 3:00 in afternoon. And the Lord Jesus Christ, as well as all of the witnesses, knew very well what the darkness was a sign of: the judgment and the anger of God, the displeasure of the Maker and Creator of the heavens and the earth. And you say, a shout of victory? A cry of triumph?
That is why, people of God, the cross is such an offense. Because that is all we see with these eyes. That is what those people saw with their eyes. And the conclusion they came to then was: this is not a king; it could not be a victorious king; we want nothing to do with Him.
So the Word of God says in the apostle Peter's epistles that the cross of Jesus Christ is a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense. There are many who see the cross of Christ only in the way I have just presented and do not show the other side of it and cannot show the other side of it because they do not have the eyes of faith to see and the ears of faith to hear what God says to His people whom He has chosen from before the foundations of the world. They stumble at this stone of the Lord Jesus Christ.
But to us who believe, Christ crucified is the word of salvation, is the word of victory. And the words that He speaks here are the shouts of triumph. To these eyes it is not a victorious shout. But to the eyes of faith it is.
Now, go back and look and listen and observe what happened in the Garden of Gethsemane. You children know that from your Bible history. When Judas and the band of soldiers came to arrest Jesus, He asked them, "Whom seek ye?" When they answered, "Jesus of Nazareth," Jesus responded, "I am He." Then all of the soldiers, Judas with them, fell back on their backside powerless. Jesus not in control? Jesus not doing what He wants to do here? Jesus not set on that path which He had determined from beforehand to walk? The Lord Jesus Christ knows what He is doing. Then do not suppose that when Peter asked Him if he could fight, and when he took out his sword and tried to fight, that Jesus said, "Put that sword away because it's no use, Peter." Listen to what Jesus said: "I could fight if I wanted to fight. Don't you think that My Father in heaven could not now send Me more than twelve legions of angels? We could fight and have that kind of victory. But I'm not interested in fighting that kind of fight." And listen to what Jesus says, not just in the Garden of Gethsemane, but throughout His ministry. Listen to the keen testimony that He makes: "No one takes My life from Me. I lay down My life. I lay down My life for My sheep."
This is what the Lord Jesus Christ is doing. Do you hear Him speak to Pilate in the beginning of the John 19? Pilate said to Jesus, "Don't you know who I am and the power I have over you?" And the response of Christ, with absolute confidence, "You could not have one ounce of power except it were given thee from above."
He says to the daughters of Jerusalem, "Don't weep for Me. I know what I am doing. Weep for yourselves and for your children."
So in His very last words, Jesus is in complete control. No one had more control over his death and dying than Christ did. "Father, now it is finished. Now I commit My spirit unto Thee. And I die!" It is a cry of victory, this cry of the Lord Jesus Christ. No matter what it may look like to these eyes, look at it with the eyes of faith and see that this is the testimony of a victorious king. Never a word sweeter than this word spoken by the Lord Jesus Christ. No word ever more pleasing to God who commissioned Him to do this work. No word ever sweeter to the angels who, from their heavenly dwelling place, were looking down upon this work of Christ.
No word ever more terrible to the devils and the devil's hosts, who knew what this meant for them, than this word, "It is finished." No word, people of God, more blessed to believing sinners than this word that we hear tonight, "It is finished."
You may sit at peace tonight. You may be in absolute peace now, because the Lord said: "It is finished for you. I've done it for you." It is cry of victory.
The question is: what is finished? Perhaps you ask, "But it isn't all finished, is it? Is it the case that Jesus is testifying here that He has ended all His work - that all His work as Redeemer has now been accomplished?" It is true, as some conclude, that it is all finished, as though now He goes to heaven and leaves the rest of salvation up to you, based on your will and your works and your reaching out to Him by your own ability? Is that what He means - "I've done My part and I go My way. Now you do your part, I'm finished"?
It does not mean that the Lord Jesus Christ is absolutely finished. He has much to do. He yet has to die. That is the seventh crossword. He is going to do that actively. He is going to commend and commit His spirit to the Father in heaven by His own work. Then He is going to go to the grave because, for us, He had to be there to break the power of the grave for our sakes so that when we go there we are not afraid. He has to rise from the dead on the third day - in power, a great victory. He needs, forty days later, to ascend into heaven. He has all kinds of things to do. He is not finished absolutely with His work. And once He has ascended into heaven He is going to receive the Spirit. And receiving the Spirit He is going to pour it out upon the church and the church is going to be active. He is going to reach to the ends of the nations and gather in His people by the ministry of the Word. And He is going to come again and He is going to judge the world in righteousness and His people with His truth. He is going to cast the unbelievers to everlasting damnation. He is going to take up to glory all of His saints. It is finished?
It does not mean that the Lord Jesus Christ is absolutely finished with all of His works. Much less does it mean that "I've done My part, now you do your part. I've earned the blessings of salvation for an infinite number of people, but I don't know who is going to be saved. It's up to you now to reach out and receive these blessings of salvation." That is why I said at the beginning, the Lord Jesus Christ is a sovereign Savior. He does not hang on the cross here unsure of who is going to be saved, unaware of whose names are written in a book of life. There, in fact, cannot even be a book of life if that is the way it is (I'm finished, I've done my part, now you do your part). The Lord Jesus Christ is a sovereign Savior. He has finished a certain part of His work, but He is going to continue on that work. Ascended up into heaven, He is going to come down in His sovereign power and work in the hearts of everyone whose name is written in the Lamb's book of life. Sovereignly He is going to work salvation in them. He is going to create faith in their hearts, by which faith they do reach out and embrace the Lord Jesus Christ. He is going to work in them both the will and the ability to do His good pleasure. These are His works. The Lord Jesus Christ is a sovereign Savior. It does not mean, "Now I am completely finished." But it means this: "I am finished suffering, in humble obedience, the wrath of God as a punishment and a substitute for your sins. I am finished with that part of My work. The whole of My work that required of Me to bear the wrath of God and endure that wrath of God in perfect obedience for you - with that I am finished. Now and here, that work has been accomplished."
You see, that is the reason why so many stumble at the cross of Christ. They do not see the purpose of the Lord Jesus Christ coming into the world. They suppose that the battle Jesus fought was a carnal battle. The kingdom Jesus is interested in is an earthly kingdom. The throne that Jesus needs to sit on is an earthly throne. And the territory that He gains is a physical territory. Because Jesus does not now gain that territory, establishes no earthly kingdom, overthrows no king from his throne (namely, Rome), they reject Him because they want a different kind of a Savior.
But Jesus' power, we know, is not an earthly power. His kingdom is not an earthly kingdom. And His purposes are certainly not earthly purposes, but spiritual, heavenly, kingdom purposes. His power is a spiritual power, His purpose the salvation of all of God's people who were given to Him, who are fallen in sin and death. That is the gospel here. This is finished: "the work that God sent Me to do to redeem them from their misery. Their slavery is not an earthly slavery but a spiritual slavery. Their bonds are the bonds of sin. Their burden is the burden of guilt. And I am come to do the will of God that frees the people from that bondage and relieves them of that burden of their guilt. Here is the purpose that I have come to accomplish - God's righteousness! Satisfaction for sin. And now that purpose has been accomplished!"
That explains all of the temptations that the devil was busy putting before the face of Jesus, trying to lure Christ off from the path of obedience. The devil knew very well what the Lord was accomplishing. Maybe the devil's servants here on this earth did not know. And, according to II Corinthians, it seems that they did not know. Had the princes of this world known, they never would have crucified the Lord of glory. But the devil knew. The devil knew very well what Christ had to do: suffer and die for our sins. That is why, at the very beginning, the devil said: "Turn these stones into bread," knowing that that would deter Him from the path of obedience and suffering. "Jump down from the pinnacle of the Temple and have everyone follow you now, the easy way. Bow down to me and I will give you all of the kingdoms of the world." That was the issue in the temptations that Satan presented to Christ.
That was the issue at Capernaum when the people wanted to force Him to become king. He knew that He could not become the earthly king because, if He did, He would not do what God had commissioned Him to do, the work about which He now says, "It is finished."
That is why Jesus called Peter the devil and said to Peter, "Get thee behind Me, Satan," because Peter had said, "No, Lord, I don't want you to suffer. You're not going to go to die. Stay here with us." "Get thee behind Me, Satan." Christ saw behind that temptation the devil himself.
That was the struggle in the Garden when He sweat great drops of blood. He did not want that path, according to His flesh. He was tempted to leave that path, but that was the path that God had given Him to walk on.
The servant of Jehovah remains obedient to the will of God. He rejects all the offers of the devil. He goes the way God says to go. And the victory the Lord Jesus Christ now receives. And that is what He is shouting about: "It is finished." My heel may be bruised, but now I have accomplished the bruising and the crushing of the head of the serpent. That work is finished!
You see, when you look at the work of the Lord Jesus Christ in that light, by faith you do not have a problem saying that it does not sound like a cry of victory at all. You can say that it is a victorious cry.
A God-centered cry
But it is also a God-directed cry, a God-centered shout.
Because, when Jesus makes this cry, He is not focusing attention upon Himself. He is focusing attention upon God and the work that God gave Him to do. I get that point, and make this an entire second point of the sermon, from the passive voice of that verb that Jesus uses. He does not say, actively, "I finished it," although He could have, calling attention to Himself. Then we might suppose that Jesus was boasting. We may not interpret His cry that way at all, not only because Jesus does not boast, but because the word itself does not say that (I finished it, I have accomplished Thy will). Jesus says, in the passive voice, "It is finished."
Once more, the person of Christ could have been on the foreground here. The victorious Son of God could have said, "Look at Me. I have done it. I am the victor." But He does not. He says it in this way, "It is finished," in order to focus attention not on Himself but on God who gave Him the work to do. He is always the humble servant who willingly takes that position of humility, who willingly says, "I am not going to glorify Myself; I come to glorify Thee, Father. And let Me glorify Thee." He is always the humble servant until the work is fully finished and God exalts Him and puts Him upon His own right hand. Then attention may be given to Him, the King. But not here. Here the attention is upon God, so that all things may be to the glory of God.
The Lord Jesus Christ does that because His eye is on God's Word. It is not only the case that tonight I get this second point from that passive voice. It is also the case that the God-centered direction of His cry comes out of the fact that He is talking about something. What is finished? We have already explained that. But we have gotten that from the fact that all of the Old Testament prophecies about Him have now been fulfilled. The whole of the New Testament indicates that, and the whole of the Old Testament points to it.
We may ask ourselves, How does Christ have His eye upon God? He has His eye upon God by having His eye upon the word of God. The program, as it were, that God had laid out for Him to accomplish He is looking at, He is interested in, He is intent on fulfilling to the very last line and the very last letter. And only when that program is finished does He say, "It is finished."
Think of the time when a choir will give a program in our church. Sometimes they hand out a printed program. They are going to sing for us so many numbers. We open that program and know exactly what they are going to be doing. We follow that program down line by line and the director is saying to us by that, "We're not finished until we get to the very last line. Then I have the right to say, 'It is finished.'" Our Lord Jesus Christ has a program given to Him by God, as it were. Eternal in the heavens, determined by the triune God. God's counsel laid out beforetime every step of the way the Lord Jesus had to walk, every suffering He had to endure, every word that He had to speak. And the Lord Jesus Christ does not say "it is finished," until it is finished. It all must be accomplished and then He may say, "It is finished."
He had His eyes on the Scriptures. That is one of the reasons that we read tonight the passage that we did, the second part of John 19. In that second part of the chapter is emphasized the fact that Jesus is fulfilling Scripture. Listen how many times that is said. In verse 24, "They said therefore among themselves, Let us not rend it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be." Then comes John's commentary on that: "that the scripture might be fulfilled, which saith, They parted my raiment among them, and for my vesture they did cast lots." The Word of God is intent on showing us that the Old Testament Scripture needs to be fulfilled here. Later in verses 36 and 37 John says, "For these things were done, that the scripture should be fulfilled, A bone of him shall not be broken. And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced." The whole of the Old Testament Scripture needs to be fulfilled before the Lord can go down into the grave.
The whole book of Matthew was written for that purpose - to show the Jews that the Lord Jesus is the fulfillment of Old Testament Scripture. Maybe you wonder, sometimes, why there are four different gospel accounts of the life, suffering, and death of Christ: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Couldn't God have written one book through a servant? He had to write four. The gospel according to Matthew was written from one point of view. This point of view, primarily, shows that the Lord is the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies. Read through the book of Matthew sometime with that in mind and count how many times it says, "That it might be fulfilled which was spoken before by the prophets."
That is what the Lord is doing now. He has His eye on the word. He is intent on carrying out the program that God gave Him to accomplish. So He said, before He was crucified (in Matt. 26), "The Son of man goes as it is written, but woe to him by whom He is betrayed." Then, later on in that chapter after Jesus had addressed those people who came to capture Him, Matthew says that "all this was done that the Scripture and prophets might be fulfilled."
All of you will be offended, Jesus said to His disciples, because of Me. Why? In order that it might be fulfilled, "I will smite the shepherd and the sheep shall be scattered." Christ knew that the Word of God must be fulfilled. So here, in the very context of our text, immediately the word of God says, "Jesus knowing that all things were accomplished, that the Scriptures might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst."
What were those Old Testament Scriptures? We have read some of them. What were those Old Testament Scriptures that Christ, from a child, grew up knowing, and understanding more and more as His life neared its end? "I will put enmity between thee and the woman and between thy seed and her seed." He knew His heel needed to be bruised. He knew He needed to bruise the head of the serpent. That is why He walked the way that He walked. There was no other way to do it than this way.
He knew all the Old Testament types pointed to Him. Moses, Joshua, David, and Solomon. He read those passages from His youth up. He memorized those psalms, many of which spoke directly to Him, one of which He quoted when He was hanging on the cross just moments before: "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" He knew that those applied to Him and could only be accomplished in Him.
He had read the book of Isaiah and found the prophecy in chapter 53 to be pointing to Him. We will not take the time to read all of it tonight, but do that in your own private devotions and hear these words that Christ knew were His words: "He shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground. He hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief. And we hid," the Old Testament says, "as it were our faces from him. He was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities. The chastisement of our peace was upon him. And with his stripes we are healed." He needed to be whipped. He was oppressed, He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth. He is brought as a lamb before the slaughter and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so He opened not His mouth. He made His grave with the wicked and with the rich in His death because He had done no violence, neither was there any deceit in His mouth.
Do you think there was a man, a child, in all of the Old Testament history that did not know the word of God? The Lord Jesus Christ saw this wave coming. He saw it as a giant tsunami, as it were, coming through the Old Testament Scripture, cresting perhaps at a passage like that of Jeremiah in the book of Lamentations when he says, "Is it nothing to you, all ye that pass by? Behold and see if there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow which is done unto me, wherewith the Lord hath afflicted me in the day of his fierce wrath." And that giant wave of Old Testament prophecies, of suffering, comes crashing down upon the Lord Jesus Christ. And then it is gone and He is able to say after that wave is gone, "It is finished! My suffering for your sakes."
It is finished. I have come to do Thy will, O God. Lo, in the volume of the book it is written of Me. I am going to accomplish every word. I am going to do every deed. I am going to walk every step of the way. Now, now, let all of the types and all of the shadows pass away because they have all been fulfilled in Me. It is finished!
And that is how He knew it was finished. Not by any other way but by this way, because He had His eye on the Old Testament Scripture, to the glory of God in heaven.
Oh, we may suppose that He knew in part that it was finished because He did not feel the suffering anymore. The agony that He had expressed in that fourth cross word, "My God, My God, why?" He did not feel anymore. Now He could look up into the heavens and see again the smiling face of God upon Him. He could also have known because now it was light again. The darkness that was a sign of God's judgment had passed. The sun was shining at three o'clock in the afternoon. That may have been an indication to Him that it was all finished. But especially the Lord knew because He knew every word that needed to be accomplished in Him from the Scriptures.
Does that not show for the people of God, too, if I may only say that in passing, the importance of knowing the Word of God that applies to us? There is a suffering left for us. It is not a suffering for sin. I am going to end with that in just a moment. But there is a cup of suffering that is given to us to endure. Do you know about it? Do you feel it? Do you know why it is? Do you know how great it is going to be? It is written in the volume of the book right here with regard to our sufferings too. We can be at peace, as the Lord was at peace, only insofar as we know the program, as it were, that God gave for us, too. Every line of it needs to be fulfilled, every word of it needs to be done. And not until the very end of it can we say, here, and then go to glory, "This, too, is finished for us."
In this way, secondly, I say just in passing, the child of God honors God. As the Master, so the servants. He honored God by knowing the Word and saying, In the volume of the book it is written of Me, I come to do Thy will. So also we servants honor God by being able to say, I come to do Thy will, O God. In the volume of the book these things are written of me.
It is finished. It is all finished. That suffering
on behalf of us, for our sins.
A believing appropriation
I believe that. And I am not going to ask you tonight whether you do, because I know you do. That is how this blessing, the blessing that is implied in this word, comes to us. We receive it by faith, by believing. We say, I know that is true for me.
That is what you say tonight. You cannot help but say it when the Spirit works in your heart. "It is finished for me." It is not finished for everyone. And if you are not a believer tonight, you may know this, that if you continually reject Christ and reject Christ until the day you die, it will never be finished for you. All the way into eternity you will endure the suffering of the wrath of God against the sins that you commit. It will never be finished for you. It is not finished for you now, and it will not be finished for you then. What the Lord Jesus Christ suffered for all God's elect, you will suffer into eternity and never finish paying.
It is not finished for everyone. It is not all put up there on a tower as it were for you who will to come and receive by your own doing. I say again, Christ knows for whom He suffered: for all of God's elect. And in God's elect is worked faith. For you who say, "He suffered for me, He suffered because of what I am, He suffered because of what I do and what I do is evil. He suffered for me because of what I am, and what I am in my own nature is evil. He suffered for me. And because God works that sorrow in me, I reach out my hands and I embrace Christ and I say, 'Christ, you said these things for me.'"
Because faith is faith, and when faith is faith, it does not try to work, to earn. Faith renounces works. Faith says, "I am not even once going to try to work to earn these blessings. I renounce all my works. They are all worthless with regard to this point. I am not going to try to suffer to pay for my sins. I am not going to conclude when I get ill and God lays me up, or God takes away things from me and does not give things to me that I want, I am not going to conclude that I am suffering for my sins - because it is finished. It is all finished. The Lord Jesus Christ suffered for our sakes, for our sins! I am not going to go out tomorrow and say, 'The more I do, the more pleased God will be with me, and the more He will forgive my sins,' because then I will show that I have not heard this word: It is finished." Faith renounces works that try to earn and pay. And when one's faith embraces Christ as a sovereign, complete Savior, then (and then only!) faith says, "I am going to work, I am going to work now and I am going to work tomorrow and I am going to work until the day God brings me to heaven. I am going to work with all my might, not because I have to pay for my sins, but because I am a thankful, redeemed, elect child of God.
Then faith works. Then faith works like nothing else in all of the world. Faith works by love. I am going to live in love, love for Christ first of all who did this for me and said it too, It is finished. And love for all of the saints whom God also redeemed by the Lord Jesus Christ.
It is (You may know it! Go home believing it) finished!
Let us pray.
Father in heaven, may that Word, one Word, glorious Word of Christ be heard by us so that our unbelieving attempts to work to earn may be rooted out of us. And we, with empty hands, come embracing Christ who is the fullness of our salvation. Then, having learned the sovereignty and completeness of Christ as a Savior, may we desire to obey. And when we sin and fail, show us Christ and the finished work that He performed for us. In His name, Amen.
Last Modified: 03/30/00