Condensed from my Missions Course (2008).
Why did Jesus cry “It is finished”?
The gospels record 7 last words or statements that Jesus uttered from the cross. The last one was a commitment of his spirit to his Father just before he died. But preceding that was a loud and triumphant cry, “It is finished.”
What was finished?
Jesus lived a sinless life, resisting and overcoming all of the enemy’s temptations, and presented a perfect, spotless sacrifice on the cross to pay for mankind’s sins. By atoning for our sins, Jesus brought us back into right standing with the Father as though we had never sinned. It was for this purpose that Jesus came and lived a sinless life in perfect obedience to his Father’s will. It was in exultant triumph that he declared the conflict won.
The enemy had lost.
The work of redemption was complete. (The tense of the original language means that this act of completion was done once and for all time and its results would abide continuously.)
The work was finished.
The victory was obtained.
And we are the beneficiary of that victory.
Let the redeemed of the Lord say so.
May the redeeming blood of our Lord Jesus Christ shines in victory in us!