The Bible’s Three Most Important Words

The celebration of Easter means far more than commemorating a historical event.  It reminds us of a timeless, transcendent reality embodied in perhaps the three most important words in the entire Bible—“It is finished” (John 19:30)—the final utterance of Jesus Christ before He died.

His words are more descriptive than it might appear. Specifically, “It is finished” can also be translated “paid in full.” It was the culmination of the entire purpose—the reason He came in the first place. Notice what He said early in His ministry:

My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work (John 4:34).

Later, in the “actual” Lord’s prayer, in anticipation of events that would shortly follow, Jesus prayed “I have glorified you on the earth by completing the work you gave me to do” (John 17:4). In a broader sense, His work included calling and training the apostles—the foundation of the church that He would establish—as well as leaving us with many important spiritual truths and the Great Commission—to take the gospel to the whole world.

However, none of that has any meaning or value apart from the fact that when He died, He paid the full price for all of our sins, guilt and shame, thus making the hope of eternal life for those who believe and trust in Him a reality. There is nothing left for us to pay!  That means that as recipients of His grace and mercy, we are free to live without worry which is true and lasting freedom! In that regard, I encourage you to review Principle #32 in my Life Essentials Study Bible, p. 1466 in the Gospel of John:

To experience joy and peace in the midst of life’s challenges, we are to approach God through the Lord Jesus Christ.

Then how should we respond to “It is finished” or “paid in full”?  Our appropriate response—fully acceptable to God—is gratitude. And when our gratitude for God’s incomparable gift ofgrace is heartfelt we experience true joy and peace.  Further, we are motivated to obey Him as well as honor Him with praise and worship.

I love the way Randy Alcorn expresses similar thoughts in his daily devotional, Grace—A Bigger View of God’s Love (p. 103):

Through the redemptive suffering of Christ—taking all human evils on himself—and through his triumph over evil and death, God in his grace has done everything necessary to defeat evil.

6 Comments on “The Bible’s Three Most Important Words”

  1. God has paid the maximum HE could have given they was no more left to give cuz he gave it all and he made the way to salvation by giving the maximum and made us holy and blameless in his sight by the blood of his cross what more would he not give us if he has given his one and only son Romans 8:32 because God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son

  2. No I could see no ear could hear no mind can conceive the great wonderful purpose that God has made for the people who love him good night and God bless

  3. The only comment I can leave now is that I am in awe true gods greatest Wonder Majesty and creation

  4. It is finished means Jesus did what his father has a plan for rescuering his people from the darkness.
    2: Jesus defeat the Satan s work
    3: Jesus set us free in worship ing him and through him we will enter the kingdom of God.

  5. God made it possible for us to have-
    Communion through-
    His son Christ-Jesus.
    I love Jesus the Christ because-
    He first loved me.
    And he has a plan,
    And a will for our lives;
    If we follow him and serve only God.

  6. Awesome teaching on “3-words it is finished”. I thank God for your teachings and your fabulous outstanding absolutely one of a kind book the Life Essentails Study Bible is packed with the knowledge of life line studies. I call them that. They feed my soul because they are my life lines.
    Amen amen may God bless you Gene!

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