By R.B. Jones
The sixth statement of Jesus is actually one word in the original Greek: tetelestai. Its full meaning is "It was finished and as a result it is forever done." A good translation would be: "It stands finished." It might well be expressed by the exclamation, "DONE!" if the idea of perfection is held in connection. It is a word of accomplishment as well as of relief, of satisfaction as well as of fact, of victory as well as of work. . . .
"It" was the torment of the payment of the penalty of the accumulated sin of all men. "It" was the suffering of the full punishment of all the guilt of all time. "It" was the experience of the combined hells of all who have offended God. . . .
When Jesus spoke this word, He was speaking as the Master Workman looking with unashamed satisfaction at His finished task. "Done! Perfect! Complete!"
But this sixth word from the cross will have little meaning for you until you see it as the victorious cry of your Substitute, your Representative, accomplishing a task on your behalf. The "it" that He completed so perfectly is the personal penalty due you because of your individual sin. . . .
The heavenly Father is now free to love lost men into His eternal Kingdom without violating His holy justice. . . Now, the eternal Son, by His substitution, satisfied the demands of God's justice, and invited man to come back home to God and love. Since Jesus had paid the price of human redemption with His own precious blood, God can now receive the repenting, returning sinner both as a loving Father and as a just God (Read Romans 3:19-26 and Galatians 3:10-14).
. . . Only because Christ completed the work is it possible for any man to be saved. But the realization of the fullest possible effect of this finished work of grace depends upon my repentance and faith (pp. 75-83).
. . . A man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified (Galatians 2:16).