Posted by: springsinthedesert | April 5, 2010

Jesus Said, “It Is Finished”

When he had received the drink, Jesus said, "It is finished." With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

          John 19:30

For past one week, in my personal meditation, I have been thinking a lot about Jesus’ death, crucifixion and resurrection. The above key verse has touched me like no other. Whenever I read this verse, the words, “It is finished” echoed in my heart. For a second, I thought of myself being at the foot of that cross, listening to Jesus saying, “It is finished”. What is finished? What did Jesus mean by that?

On Saturday, I heard a message on the seven last words of Jesus and the servant of God mentioned about this one and said that the actual Greek word from which it was (it is finished) translated is ‘Tetelestai’. Just out of curiosity, I surfed the web to find out the actual meaning of that Greek word and these are some of the information that I received and hope that this would be helpful for you and me to understand what Jesus did for us on that cross.

These words when spoken during that early first century  had a significant original meaning attached to it. In those days, this word ‘tetelestai’ was used as the first word of a receipt, which means fully paid. When Jesus died on that cross for you and me, He bought us with a price and that is by the blood of the Lamb and He paid it full. Do you realize that the price for our sins are fully paid by God?

Another usage of that word ‘Tetelestai’ is seen in terms of court language. In those days, when a prisoner is sent to jail, his charge sheet will be nailed on to his prison door. Once he finished his sentence, this charge sheet is removed and it is cancelled by writing on it in big words: Tetelestai…which means fully served. To save you and me from the eternal death, Jesus paid the price and fully served the death sentence for all our sins. Today, are you troubled by any of your past sins? Whether big or small, Jesus had paid the price and served the sentence in place of us..We just have to confess our sins and ask His forgiveness and claim the living hope that is given to us through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

We can see another usage for this word ‘Tetelestai’, which is more related to military and wars. In Rome, when the general returned from a war victoriously with the captives, he will march them through the streets shouting ‘Tetelestai’ meaning fully accomplished, the enemy is conquered and the power is broken. How can a death bring about such a great victory? Yes, Jesus Christ accomplished His purpose on the cross by offering himself as a sacrifice and conquered the enemy.

When we hear the words, ‘It is finished’. do we realize how much God has done for us on that cross? He paid our price in full so that we don’t have to do any kind of rituals or good works to attain the redemption of sins. We were supposed to be there on that cross serving our death sentence for our sins…but He took our place and served the sentence completely….so that we can inherit eternity through receiving the salvation that He had offered through the cross. When satan tries to defeat us in many ways, we forget that Jesus has fully accomplished the victory over him. On that cross, Jesus has conquered the enemy and broken his powers. So next time, when satan tries to torment you with the thoughts of your previous sins, tell him that Jesus has fully paid, fully served and fully accomplished…..through that cross. If you have never experienced this wonderful redemption through the blood of Jesus, I would encourage you to claim it today…Come near to the cross , accept that you are a sinner, confess your sins, ask Lord for his forgiveness and invite Him as your Lord and Savior. On that cross, He suffered that pain and shame for you and for you alone, He said, ‘It is finished’.


God Bless,

Rani John



  1. Thank you for this great message, and for all the research you have done to better explain things, sometimes things are lost in translation, and it is good to find the literal meaning. I will think of this from now on when I think of Christ dying on the cross for me. God Bless

    • Jim,

      Usually I’m not that good in remembering all Greek and Hebrew words…but I dont think I will forget this one…because the meaning attached to that word really makes it appropriate… Jesus has fully paid, fully served and fully accomplished His purpose on that cross…

      God Bless,

  2. Rani, I know that Christ paid the price for my sin, but I was not aware of the Greek word for “It is finished” and the various meanings it was given at the time. You have done a great job of explaining how much this simple phrase from Jesus’ lips really means for us today. Thank you. Peace, Linda.

    • Thank you Linda for stopping by..Usually I dont give much importance to such Greek words and their translation..but this time, I think Holy Spirit wanted me to truly understand what Jesus has done for me on that cross….and the truth was just so heartbreaking..but at the same relieving..because I do not have to do anything from my side to attain redemption…its all paid for me…paid in full..

      Thank you and God Bless,

  3. Awesome message! I love that you dug deep into the meaning with the greek translation.
    God bless you Rani!

    • Thank you Desiree…The direction in which Holy spirit guides us is sometimes really interesting…He tries to take us to subjects and areas, out of our interests or comfort zones and tries to explain the truth from there…and its always amazing to hear from Him.I’m glad that this devotion touched you..

      God Bless,
      Rani John

  4. Rani,

    Fully paid, fully served and fully accomplished…it is FINISHED. This is revelation because as I read your article, I realized that salvation is not just a man dying on the cross to redeem us back…but HE PAID, HE SERVED AND HE ACCOMPLISHED much more than we can ever come to understand in human terms. Yet, when we understand just but a fraction of what redemption is all about….we cannot help but serve and live for Him…in this life and hope for eternity with Him.

    Thank you and God bless you!


    • Yes..We understand just a part of His redemption plan…I guess the magnitude of it is revealed to us only when we are with Him in heaven..

      Thank you and God Bless,

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