Print Sermon

These sermon manuscripts and videos now go out to about 1,500,000 computers in over 215 countries every year at www.sermonsfortheworld.com. Hundreds of others watch the videos on YouTube, but they soon leave YouTube and come to our website. YouTube feeds people to our website. The sermon manuscripts are given in 35 languages to about 120,000 computers each month. The sermon manuscripts are not copyrighted, so preachers can use them without our permission. Please click here to learn how you can make a monthly donation to help us in this great work of spreading the Gospel to the whole world, including the Muslim and Hindu nations.

Whenever you write to Dr. Hymers always tell him what country you live in, or he cannot answer you. Dr. Hymers’ e-mail is rlhymersjr@sbcglobal.net.

Dear friend, "Tetelestai! It is Finished!" is only one of the hundreds of sermons that appear on Dr. Hymers' website.  There are about 900 word-for-word sermon manuscripts available on a wide range of subjects.  Please click here to read some of the titles of these sermons

TETELESTAI!  IT IS FINISHED!

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached on Lord’s Day Morning, October 29, 2006
at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles

“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).


Jesus hangs dying on the Cross. Earlier that day He had been offered a drink of vinegar mixed with gall and had refused it. But now, moments before His death, He cries out, “I thirst.” Dr. John R. Rice said,

This thirst is foretold in Psalm 22:15, “My strength is dried up like a potsherd; and my tongue cleaveth to my jaws; and thou hast brought me into the dust of death.” His mouth is dry. His tongue swells and sticks to His jaws. Thirst is a horrible thing. But even in His torment and His thirst the Saviour thinks of the Scripture and is set on fulfilling it. All must know that He is bearing in His own body the torments of the damned, the wages of sin for all the world, and so He cries, “I thirst!” Even in His death, Jesus pleases not Himself but the Father, and the Scripture is fulfilled. We know, of course, that the Saviour did not expect water on the Cross…He knew He would be given vinegar and gall to torment Him further, to burn His mouth and crack His lips…The thirst of the Lord Jesus on the cross was my thirst. He suffered what I should have suffered. His torments were intended rightfully for me…Let us rejoice that the holy thirst of Jesus purchased us the right to drink and never thirst again (John R. Rice, D.D., The Son of God: A Verse-by-Verse Commentary on the Gospel According to John, Sword of the Lord Publishers, 1976, pp. 377-378).

And then,

“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).

The Greek word simply means “spirit” (Strong #4151). Jesus gave up His spirit and died. But I want you to notice the last thing Christ said,

“It is finished.”

It takes three English words to translate one word in the Greek text. That word is “tetelestai” – “It is finished.” But what did Christ mean? I think there were at least five things that were “finished” the moment Christ “gave up” His spirit and died on the Cross.

I. First, all the Old Testament prophecies
concerning His death were finished.

In the twenty-eighth verse we read,

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

Notice the word “accomplished.” The Greek word is the same. It is “tetelestai.” Spurgeon said,

In the 28th verse, we have the word in the Greek; it is translated in our version, “accomplished,” but there it stands – “After all this, Jesus knowing that all things were now finished, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst.” And then he afterwards said, “It is finished.” This leads us to see his meaning very clearly, that all the Scripture was now fulfilled, that when He said, “It is finished,” the whole book, from the first to the last, in both the law and the prophets, was finished in him…And not a prophecy, whether they had received it in Babylon, or in Samaria, or in Judea [was given] which was not now fully [accomplished and finished] in Christ Jesus (C. H. Spurgeon, “It Is Finished,” The Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, Pilgrim Publications, 1986 reprint, vol. VII, p. 586).

In this brief sermon, I can only draw out a few of the many prophecies of the Old Testament Scriptures that were fulfilled when Christ said,

“It is finished.”

For instance, the “proto evangelium,” the first mention of the gospel, given way back at the beginning of history, was finished. God had said to Satan,

“And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel” (Genesis 3:15).

The Scofield Study Bible says that this is “The first promise of a Redeemer… The chain of references which begins here includes the promises and prophecies concerning Christ which were fulfilled…” (The Scofield Study Bible, note on Genesis 3:15). That very first prophecy was fulfilled when Christ said,

“It is finished.”

Or again, take the 22nd Psalm, which foretold His very dying words,

“My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Psalm 22:1).

That was finished. Or the words in that same Psalm which said,

“They pierced my hands and my feet” (Psalm 22:16).

That, too, was finished when Jesus died on the Cross.

Or take that great chapter in Isaiah 53, which said in part,

“Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows…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. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:4-6).

That, too, was finished.

“It is finished.”

Or take Jesus’ own words, after He rose physically from the dead, and said to the disciples,

“Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory? And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the [Old Testament] scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:26-27).

Christ told them that all things spoken by Moses and “all the prophets” were fulfilled and finished in Him!

“It is finished.”

Spurgeon commented,

Now I say boldly, that if the greatest intellects of the ages could set themselves to work out this problem, to invent another key to the…prophecies, they could not do it…till one comes forward and proclaims, “The cross of Christ and the Son of God incarnate,” then the whole is clear…Blessed Saviour! In thee we discover everything carried out…which God had spoke of old by the prophets; in thee we discover everything carried out [and fulfilled], which God spoke of old by the prophets; in thee we discover everything [fulfilled], which God has set forth [in the ancient Scriptures]. Glory be unto thy name! “It is finished” – everything [in prophecy] is summed up [and completed] in thee [Lord Jesus]! (C. H. Spurgeon, ibid., pp. 586-587).

“It is finished.”

II. Second, all the types and typical prophecies under the
Old Testament law were finished, abolished and explained.

They were finished in Christ Jesus. Watch Abraham come, and see him look down in wonder, while he beholds God revealing Christ in the person of Isaac on Mount Moriah. From the time of Noah, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, see their smoking altars and bloody sacrifices, and see them all fulfilled when Jesus cried out,

“It is finished.”

See Aaron and the high priests and Levites, every morning and evening offer a lamb for a sacrifice and say, “Lord, when will this sacrifice end? When will it be finished? Will it ever be complete?” And then hear Christ on the Cross cry,

“It is finished.”

It is finished! It is finished! Every bullock and every lamb sacrificed by God’s people under the Old Covenant were accomplished in the death of Christ, when He cried,

“Tetelestai! It is finished!”

III. Third, all obedience to the law of God
was finished in Christ crucified.

Christ’s perfect obedience to God’s law was finished. Now it was not necessary that a man must perfectly obey every law of God to be saved. No, he could not be saved by perfectly keeping God’s commandments, for the law was not meant to save man by perfect obedience. That was not the purpose of the law of God. The Bible says,

“The law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith” (Galatians 3:24).

It was necessary for a man to be saved, that the law should be kept perfectly, for no man on this earth will ever see God, except he be perfect in righteousness. But Christ obeyed God’s law perfectly in the place of those who trust Him.

Nothing so completely reveals the perfect obedience of Christ to the Law as does His entire submission to God by His death of the Cross. Christ perfected obedience to the law of God by going to the Cross. He paid our debt of law, in our place on the Cross. Christ, by His perfect righteousness, with which He covers the believer, and adorns him with imputed righteousness, purchased our righteousness on that Cross. As an old hymn put it,

Free from the law, O happy condition,
   Jesus hath bled, and there is remission,
Cursed by the law and bruised by the fall,
   Christ hath redeemed us once for all.
(“Once For All” by Philip P. Bliss, 1838-1876).

When you come to Christ, you are cleansed from sin, and clothed in His righteousness! You are free from the “curse of the law” by what Christ did for you on the Cross.

“Tetelestai! It is finished!”

IV. Fourth, all the power of Satan and sin was finished
for God’s people on the Cross.

Once again, when Jesus said, “It is finished,” Christ entered into a winning battle over Satan and sin. Sin destroyed Christ, but by that destruction, Christ destroyed sin – and Satan!

When Christ said, “It is finished,” He had defeated sin and Satan – and He had also destroyed death for those who trust in Him. When Christ said, “It is finished,” He said to Satan and his demonic hosts, “Let my people go! You have kept them in slavery long enough!”

In the synagogue at Nazareth, Jesus said,

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me…to preach deliverance to the captives…to set at liberty them that are bruised” (Luke 4:18).

And that is exactly what Christ will do for you – if you come to Him and throw yourself at His feet, and believe in Him with all your heart – for Christ has full power over Satan and sin. He overcame them when He died on that Cross!

“Tetelestai! It is finished!”

Thus, Charles Wesley could sing,

He breaks the power of canceled sin,
   He sets the prisoner free;
His blood can make the foulest clean;
   His blood availed for me.
(“O For a Thousand Tongues” by Charles Wesley, 1707-1788).

“Tetelestai! It is finished!”

Come to Christ by faith and He will set you free from slavery to Satan and sin! All that was needed for Him to free you was finished on the Cross.

“Tetelestai! It is finished!”

V. Fifth, all the justice of God was satisfied on behalf of
His people when Christ died on the Cross.

When Christ cried out, “It is finished,” He made peace between God and man – for the justice of God was satisfied by the death of Jesus on that Cross.

“Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood…that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus” (Romans 3:24-26).

The divine justice of God was satisfied for the believer when Jesus said,

“It is finished.”

When you trust in Jesus by faith the justice and judgment of God no longer hang over you. You are no longer counted guilty in God’s sight when you trust the Lord Jesus Christ, for He said,

“It is finished.”

All possible punishment for your sin is gone. It has been fully paid for by Christ on the Cross.

“Tetelestai! It is finished!”
“Tetelestai! It is finished!”
“Tetelestai! It is finished!

Everything needed for your salvation has already been furnished by Christ on the Cross!

What is left for you to do? Spurgeon said,

Poor sinner, wilt thou have Christ or [not]? “Ah,” says one, “I am willing enough, but I am not worthy.” He does not want any worthiness.

            “It is finished.”

All Christ asks is your willingness [for He says] “Whosoever will may come” (cf. Revelation 22:17). If He has given you willingness, you may [come] and believe in Christ…this morning. “Ah!” say you, “but you cannot mean me?” But I do…[for it is all finished, the whole work of your salvation is complete]. (C. H. Spurgeon, ibid., p. 592).

“It is finished.” Come home to Christ. He welcomes you to come, and I hope you will listen to Him and come to Him and be saved now, this very morning.

Let us stand and sing the last song on the song sheet. Stand and sing it heartily. Lift up your song sheet and sing out loud and strong.

Out of my bondage, sorrow, and night,
   Jesus, I come, Jesus, I come,
Into Thy freedom, gladness, and light,
   Jesus, I come to Thee…
Out of myself to dwell in Thy love,
   Out of despair into raptures above,
Upward for aye on wings like a dove,
   Jesus, I come to Thee.
(“Jesus, I Come” by William T. Sleeper, 1819-1904).

Dear friend, "Tetelestai! It is Finished!" is only one of the hundreds of sermons that appear on Dr. Hymers' website.  There are about 900 word-for-word sermon manuscripts available on a wide range of subjects.  Please click here to read some of the titles of these sermons

(END OF SERMON)
You can read Dr. Hymers' sermons each week on the Internet
at www.realconversion.com. Click on "Sermon Manuscripts."


Scripture Read Before the Sermon by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan: John 19:16-30.
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith: “Once For All”
(by Philip P. Bliss, 1838-1876).


THE OUTLINE OF

TETELESTAI!  IT IS FINISHED!

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.


“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).

(Psalm 22:15)

I.   All the Old Testament prophecies concerning His death
were finished, John 19:28; Genesis 3:15; Psalm 22:1, 16;
Isaiah 53:4-6; Luke 24:26-27.

II.  All the types and typical prophecies under the Old Testament
law were finished, abolished and explained, John 19:30.

III. All obedience to the law of God was finished in Christ crucified,
Galatians 3:24.

IV.  All the power of Satan and sin was finished for God’s people
on the Cross, Luke 4:18.

V.   All the justice of God was satisfied on behalf of His people
when Christ died on the Cross, Romans 3:24-26;
cf. Revelation 22:17.