Summary: A sermon on the sixth saying of our Lord from the cross.
Many horror stories emerged from the countries of Eastern Europe as their Communist dictator¬ships were overthrown. None surpasses the cruelty of former Romanian dic¬tator, Nicolae Ceausescu’s Home for the Deficient and Unsalvagcable.
By Ceausescu’s order, children throughout Romania who were found to have some mental or physical deformity were sent to this home. Any child judged by the state to be less than perfect was taken from his parents and sent to this home to die so that valuable resources would not be "wasted" upon him. No ugliness or imperfection was tolerated.
How thankful we can be that God did not use such a standard with His love and grace. If he had, then none of us could ever know His love. No, He chose to love us all, despite our imperfections.
The One Who was perfect, chose to give Himself for the imperfect, so that we, who are imperfect, might become perfect in Him! Right now, I am imperfect, but one day, because of Jesus, I will be made perfect. Right now, I am unfinished, but one day, because of Jesus, I will be finished! And when God is finished with me, I will be just like Jesus!
B. "Tetelestai" Was A Word Used By Merchants.
To merchants, "Tetelestai," referred to the paying of a debt. If you purchased something, the merchant would take your money and then would give you a receipt of payment. The receipt would say, "Tetelestai - paid in full."
As sinners who were in debt to God for an amount we could never pay, we were in need of someone to pay the debt for us. In Christ, God took it upon Himself to pay for us what we owed to Him, thus making it possible for us, through acceptance of the payment He has made on our behalf to receive a full pardon! No wonder the Bible refers to eternal life as a gift (Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8-9)! Because it is a gift, it is free. But also because it is a gift, it must be received.
George Wilson was sentenced to hang after he was convicted of killing a guard while robbing a federal payroll from a train. Public sentiment against capital punishment led to an eventual pardon by President Andrew Jackson. Unbelievably, Wilson refused to accept the pardon. Can you do that? The case became so confusing that the Supreme Court was called on to bring about a ruling. Chief Justice John Marshall delivered the verdict: "A pardon is a parchment whose only value must be determined by the receiver of the pardon. It has no value apart from that which the receiver gives it. George Wilson has refused to accept the pardon. We cannot conceive why he would do so, but he has. Therefore, George Wilson must die."
Consequently, Wilson was hanged. God’s grace becomes a pardon from sin only to those who receive it.
Conclusion: In one sense, the work of redemption is unfinished. God wants to bring the salvation Jesus fully paid for on Calvary to the hearts of individuals, and as long as there is one person who has yet to receive the pardon Jesus died to provide them, the work is unfinished.
Some of you have some unfinished business with God. he has completed His part. You need to bring to completion your part by receiving Christ as personal Savior and Lord.