Summary: Jesus is not broken by arrest and crucifixion process, so He is able to help us when we are broken
“Pierced but Not Broken”
What would it take to break you?
If you had a secret … a really important secret … how much punishment could you endure before you would give that secret up?
What if they started hurting your family members? Would you hand over the secret then?
Everyone has a breaking point. Which raise the question … did Jesus have a breaking point?
He has been through so much.
He has endured a whole heap of suffering.
The physical and mental abuse has been over-whelming.
Did it break Him?
Let’s read John 19:28-37
As we make our way through this section we are going to keep asking the same question.
Is Jesus broken by the arrest and crucifixion process?
We will start with a focus on His humanity.
If you know the other phrases of Jesus on the cross … and there are seven in total … you might find these words of Jesus a little strange.
Father forgive them because they do not know what they are doing.
My God. My God. Why have You forsaken Me?
It is finished.
These are sayings of power aren’t they. They are in character and appropriate for the occasion. Then we get to these words of Jesus.
It seems so mundane.
And that is precisely the point. Just when we think we have the cross nicely packaged, we are given a little reminder:-
Don’t forget that Jesus was human. He had flesh. He knows what it means to be like us.
Jesus gets thirsty. In John 4:7 when Jesus is talking with the Samaritan woman He asks her to give Him a drink.
Not just because He wants to teach her a spiritual lesson.
But because it is Samaria is a hot dry country and when you walk all day to get to a town … you get thirsty.
If that is the case when you walk around, how much more thirstier would you be if you were in Jesus’ situation.
It is quite possible that the last drink Jesus had was at the Passover – early in the previous night. Since then He was pierced by the crown of thorns, beaten with a wooden staff, whipped and nailed to a cross. If you were close enough you would hear blood dripping onto the ground into a slimy mess at the base of the cross.
I thirst says Jesus.
But don’t forget also that Jesus has also been enduring the wrath of God. He already has made the cry My God. My God. Why have You forsaken Me? It is not a small thing to face the anger and wrath of God. Nahum 1:6 says Who can withstand His indignation? Who can endure His fierce anger? His wrath is poured out like fire; the rocks are shattered before Him.
I thirst says Jesus
Does the thirst means the Jesus is broken? Not at all.
Remember how John opened this section.
Knowing all was complete and so Scripture would be fulfilled.
What Scripture is that?
They put gall in my food and gave me vinegar for my thirst.
My strength is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth; you lay me in the dust of death.
As Jesus cries out on the cross “I thirst” He isn’t broken. Rather He is making another guarantee that He is promised Messiah.
The thirst of Jesus says, “I am the real deal.”
Thirsting because He has taken the anger of God.
Thirsting as a man – just to let us know how down-to-earth Christianity really is.
Jesus isn’t broken … he is fixing the relationship that we broke with God.
So we are still asking the question Is Jesus broken by the arrest and crucifixion process?
Which brings us to the next words of Jesus
It is finished.
How many of us have a tendency to stop before we have crossed the finished line. Think about your life. Is there
- a partly completed garden? - a half-read book?
- an long forgotten renovation? - an barely begun project?
- an abandoned diet? - a car up on blocks?
There are many people in this world who have gone to the grave without finishing what they really wanted to do. But Jesus isn’t one of those.
When He had received the drink Jesus said, “It is Finished.”
In the original language the actual word Jesus says is tetelestai … which means it is finished. It was a very common expression in the days of Jesus.
• A farmer would use it describe an animal so beautiful that it seemed to have no faults. He would look at his lamb and declare, Tetelestai!