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What is the meaning of the 7 last words of Jesus on the cross?

Why did he say what he did?

The seven ‘words’ are the seven things which Jesus said between his crucifixion and death.

Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.

Luke 23:33 And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left. 34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.

I think here he is praying for the soldiers who crucified him

Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.

Luke 23:42 And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. 43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.

Jesus gives the man assurance that he will be with him when he comes into his kingdom. The translators, due to their belief in the false doctrine of the immortality of the soul, have introduced a comma in the wrong place (there are no commas in the Greek).

Woman, behold thy son!... Behold thy mother!

John 19:26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! 27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.

Jesus makes provision for his mother’s welfare with the apostle John.

Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani - My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

Matthew 27:46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

Mark 15:34 And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

It would seem that Jesus’ consciousness of God’s presence left him at this point, allowing him to experience the loneliness of all men and women at the point of death. All face death alone. The comfort for us is we know that God hadn’t left him anymore than he leaves those who trust in him.

I thirst

John 19:28 After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst. 29 Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.

Whether this was a thirst for water – a natural consequence of his ordeal, or whether it was a thirst for the promised future glory is not clear.

It is finished

John 19:30 When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the spirit.

At this point Jesus had fulfilled all that God required of him. He had finished the work that God had given him to do. John omits Jesus’ final words which Luke supplies:

Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit

Luke 23:46 And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the spirit.

We might reasonably suppose that the spirit commended to God was the blameless character of Jesus, to be acknowledged and restored at his resurrection. It is not a spirit that continues in a separate conscious existence after death because the scripture tells us plainly that the dead ‘know not anything’ (Ecclesiastes 9:5) and in death ‘their thoughts perish’ (Psalms 146:4). Death is for this reason described as ‘sleep’(John 11:11).

I hope you find this helpful.

God bless,

Glenn

 
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