After this, Jesus, knowing that all things were now accomplished … said, "I thirst!" … So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, "It is finished!" And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit. (Joh 19:28-30)
The cross was the place where Jesus fully and completely identified with the condition of humanity after the fall. Psalm 22, that great Psalm about the cross, recognises that His thirst was the dryness of death. He had been fully made one with our dead state towards God, as He had acknowledged earlier when recognising that His Father had forsaken Him when He had made Jesus Sin. The cross was the greatest battle that has ever been fought. It was fought by a man who had been weakened by a lack of sleep, a terrible whipping that made it almost impossible for Him to walk, and being nailed on a cross with arms outstretched and unable to defend Himself. But it was the man Christ Jesus, in all His weakness, that would take on the devil and who would by His faithfulness to His Father and His own righteousness, even when made Sin, destroy the enemy. Crucified in weakness, but not defeated, but rather accomplishing a most wonderful victory, for it was by the cross that all the enemies of mankind were defeated and the weakness of the flesh was overcome.
At the end of the time on the cross, John records His statement, “It is finished!” The other gospel writers tell us that He cried with a loud voice. This was a shout of victory; this was the testimony of a triumph! As one hymn writer puts it, “The reign of sin and death is over, and all may live from sin set free.” We must not think that anything that happened on the cross was an accident. Even His final act of giving up the spirit, was not just a consequence of the suffering on the cross. Only a few days earlier He had testified, “I am the life.” The cross by itself could not kill Him. He had explained to His disciples earlier in His ministry what would happen, “… I lay down My life that I may take it again.” (Joh 10:17b) He deliberately yielded up His earthly life, so that He died to Sin and that, after resurrection, death would no longer have any dominion over Him. That condition He now shares with all that will come to Him and drink the living water that He offers. Have you come to Him and drunk that living water so that the life which [you] now live in the flesh [you] live by faith in the Son of God (Gal 2:20)?