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April 18 – Jesus’ sixth word on the cross

“It is finished.” – John 19:30

Scripture reading: John 19:28-30

You and I might not finish something we’ve begun. Due to laziness, weakness or for reasons outside our control, that project you were working on or letter you were writing or diet you started, didn’t get completed.

But that can never be said of Christ. Jesus’ sixth word on the cross is a word of triumph. He fully completed what He came to do. In 1 John 3:5 we read, “You know that He appeared to take away sins.” A few verses later John says, “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.” These purposes are not separate, but the same. Christ came to take away our sins and thereby to free us from the tyranny of the devil.

There are times when I’m keenly aware of my own sins and conclude, as did Paul, “O wretched man that I am” (Rom. 7:24). At those times, when the devil points his finger at me and says “guilty,” I remind myself of this sixth word on the cross. “It is finished.” Christ paid it all. That truth restores the joy. Horatio Spafford got it right when he penned this stanza in his well-loved hymn, “It is Well with My Soul”: “My sin – O the bliss of this glorious thought! – My sin, not in part, but the whole, is nailed to the cross and I bear it no more; praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!”

Suggestions for prayer

Pray thatGod would forgive your sins because of Christ’s sacrifice for you and that He would grant you a deeper assurance that your sins are forgiven and that it is well with your soul.

This daily devotional is available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional. Rev. Derrick Vander Meulen is the minister of Coram Deo Reformation Church(URC) in Littleton, Colorado.

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