Jesus’ final word from the cross, following his Word of Triumph, was THE WORD OF REUNION
Father, into your hands I commit my spirit. Luke 23:46
“This was not a request but an announcement. He was going home.” (A.W. Pink)
Jesus had voluntarily gone to the cross. And now he voluntarily commits his spirit into his Father’s hands. No one took his life from him.
For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life that I may take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father.” John 10:17-18
God’s wrath has been satisfied and Jesus is now experiencing his Father’s fellowship again. Can you hear the joy in Jesus’ voice as he tenderly says, “Father”? For three hours the Father had withdrawn his fellowship as he poured out his wrath on his Son. Now their fellowship is restored never to be broken again.
This is what heaven is – unbroken, perfect, eternal fellowship with our heavenly Father through Christ. How Jesus must have looked forward to going home. How we should look forward to going home to heaven. Many of us spend so much time working for the things of this world, trying to improve our lot in this life, and trying to enjoy this world, that we spend little time thinking of our life to come. Yet Paul tells us to set our minds on things above, where Christ is. Peter reminds us that we are strangers and exiles here, just passing through on the way to our real home, heaven. Jesus looked forward to heaven. He longed to be in his Father’s presence again.
I want Jesus’ example to inspire me to long more for heaven and think more about it. And as I think on heaven, I also want to contemplate hell. I want Jesus to give me a greater concern for unbelievers, because heaven and hell are real.
How fearful for unbelievers when they die. Hebrews 10:31 says it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. “Instead of falling in the arms of love, they will fall into the hands of justice.” (Pink). But for us who believe, although we cannot choose the time we go home, in the last hour of our lives, we can entrust ourselves to our heavenly Father. When we who believe in Christ finally fall asleep, we will fall into the everlasting arms of love.
Let us long for heaven and our eternal fellowship with our God, and commit not only our spirits, but our very lives into his hands.