It Is Finished
If you read the Bible from the first to the last page, you will realize that the only parts that are completely happy are at the beginning and the end. There’s the first two chapters of Genesis, when Adam and Eve stroll with God through the perfect world he has made. And then there’s the last part of Revelation, when Jesus comes back, kicks the devil out for good, and establishes his Kingdom, world without end, amen. Everything else is middle. And a lot of the middle is about battle and suffering and confusion—a whole bunch of ups and downs.
Remember the last words of Christ as he hung on the cross: “It is finished.” I used to imagine this as a whispered sigh. But what if it was more like a roar? That would fit, wouldn’t it? Jesus, the great Lion of Judah, using his last bit of strength to shout out the victory. The devil was confounded, his power broken, his kingdom plundered. It must have been such an unpleasant surprise for Satan, who thought himself the great winner of everything as he watched the Son of God hanging in agony on a Roman cross.
As believers, we have the enormous advantage of knowing how the story ends. Because of what Christ has achieved for us, we know that our own stories will also end well no matter what we face in life. With this in mind it makes sense to live our stories from the middle with the end in sight.
But why start in the middle? Simply because that’s where God has placed us—somewhere in the middle of the mess we call life. Like the big story of salvation, our own story is filled with ups and downs. We experience both joy and sorrow. But we also know that in the end, everything will come out right for those who belong to Christ, and that should make our own personal downs more bearable. That’s what I mean by living with the end in sight.
What are you facing today—an illness, a divorce, a demotion, a disaster? Whatever your trouble, Christ has already said your life will turn out well because he has finished the mission he came to fulfill.
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