Why did Jesus say, “I thirst,” from the cross?
QuestionAnswer In the nearly six hours that Jesus Christ was crucified, our Lord made seven final words to those who witnessed them. According to John 19:28, one of these utterances is recorded: When Jesus saw that all had been completed and that Scripture would be fulfilled, he expressed his hunger by saying, ‘I am thirsty.'” “I thirst,” Jesus says, according to the apostle John, and this phrase is connected to the fulfillment of Scripture. Indeed, during the twenty-four hours surrounding the Lord’s death, at least twenty Old Testament prophesies were fulfilled, according to historical records.
Psalm 22:15 describes how Jesus’ lips had dried up like a potsherd and his tongue had stuck to the roof of his mouth while he hung on the cross.
Regarding the division of Jesus’ clothing among the Roman soldiers, the apostle John had mentioned this same psalm previously in his writings (John 19:23).
Vinegar was the cheapest and most accessible type of wine for troops to get.
- Earlier, Jesus turned down a drink of vinegar, gall, and myrrh that was presented to Him in order to alleviate His distress (Matthew 27:34 and Mark 15:23).
- “I’m thirsty,” though, and so he asks for a glass here, some hours after the last statement.
- This deed was a fulfillment of Psalm 69:21: “They put gall in my meal and gave me vinegar for my thirst.” Immediately after receiving the drink, Jesus says, “ It is finished,” and then bows His head and gave up His spirit (John 19:30).
- There is another, very practical reason Jesus cries, “I thirst,” from the cross.
- When the act of purchasing our redemption was complete, nothing more was needed.
- The Scriptures were fulfilled.
- All that God had purposed and all the prophets had foretold was complete, and Jesus surrendered Himself to death.
- (Matthew 27:50; see also Mark 15:37).
- (Luke 23:46).
- The death of Jesus Christ finished His work of redemption, atonement, and reconciliation.
Our ransom complete, Jesus, with a resounding voice, wanted all people to hear these words—words that still ring strong today: “It is finished!” Return to:Questions about John Why did Jesus say, “I thirst,” from the cross?
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What Is the Significance of Jesus Saying ‘I Thirst’ in John 19:28?
The crucifixion was not a straightforward occurrence. The death of Christ on the cross is God’s final and conclusive response to sinful mankind. Instead of condemnation, we discover forgiveness. Instead of bringing about vengeance, God brings about redemption. As an alternative to punishing mankind, Jesus accepts and welcomes its suffering. These facts are clarified in Christ’s utterances from the cross, which we can see for ourselves. Until his last breath, Jesus continues to declare pardon and redemption to anybody who would listen and react to him.
- It appears that this speech, in some ways, stands in stark contrast to his earlier utterances made while on the cross.
- Similar to this, his remarks to Mary and John, “behold your son/behold your mother,” imply the formation of a Christian congregation.
- When Jesus says this, he is not thinking about the Father above him or about the people below him, but about himself as he hangs on the cross.
- The question now is, exactly, what Jesus meant when he stated, “I hunger.”
I Thirst Verse Meaning
Jesus was a little peckish. This may appear to be an unnecessarily straightforward approach. If you take these words and interpret them in an overly spiritualized way, you may find yourself in trouble. We may think of “thirsting” as a metaphor for Christ’s command to “hunger and thirst for righteousness” (Matthew 5:6). Yet another possible connection would be to draw a relationship between this remark and Christ’s invitation to those who are thirsty to come and drink from the fountain of life (Revelation 22:17).
- Such investigations may lead us to a greater understanding of our religion as well as the discovery of life-changing insights.
- I would argue that this is not the case.
- It might be easy to think of the cross’s agony as relating exclusively to the nails that were driven into Christ’s hands and feet.
- Only when this humiliating parade was completed was he subjected to having nails hammered through his hands and feet.
- Jesus is hung on the crucifixion in a position of self-suffocation as he dies.
- After hours of being crucified in the scorching midday sun, this task would become more and more difficult, as well as more and more agonizing for the victim.
- The cross served as a tool for inflicting the greatest amount of suffering imaginable.
Jesus’ declaration of thirst comes from a point of bodily fatigue on the part of the disciples.
Jesus speaks of his own thirst as a way of expressing a genuine human desire for nutrition and comfort.
This reality must be remembered so that we do not deny Christ’s humanity.
That Jesus just seemed to be human was the idea held by many at the time.
It was therefore stated by heretics that Jesus, the second member of the holy Trinity, did not suffer during the crucifixion, as was traditionally believed by Christians.
Because thirst is a human experience, it made no sense for Jesus to exclaim, “I thirst,” because thirst is a sensation that has no place in the divine nature.
Christians believe that Jesus was totally human in all aspects of his life.
He ate and drank as he pleased.
He laughed and sobbed at the same time.
He passed away.
The crucifixion was the final destination for Jesus Christ, the actual manifestation of God.
To believe that Christ was not crucified in some way is to believe that there is something about mankind that Jesus does not understand or participate in.
“That which is not assumed stays unhealed,” remarked Gregory of Nazianzus, an early Church Father, in one of his writings.
As a last point, how can Jesus propose a remedy to the world’s brutality and violence if he has not personally experienced it?
Jesus takes on the pain of all of humanity in order to be the means of salvation for all of humanity. In light of this knowledge, we are able to be certain that nothing in our lives is outside the reach of Christ’s redeemed love. Our thirsts can be satiated as a result of his thirst for us.
Why Did Jesus Ask for a Drink on the Cross?
Jesus is the promised Messiah. Unless we comprehend the fact that Jesus was a totally flesh and blood human being, we will not be able to comprehend the gospel in its entirety. Jesus, on the other hand, was not simply another human being. Jesus was totally human, yet he was also fully divine at the same time. Jesus is the second member of the Godhead, behind the Father and the Son. God’s own incarnation took place on our planet through his presence. In this sense, Jesus is identified as God’s Anointed One, the agent of God’s redemption and salvation on the earth.
- As soon as John recalls Jesus stating, “I thirst,” he adds, “this was in order to fulfill the Torah” (19:28).
- First and foremost, according to Psalm 69:21, “they gave me poison for food, and for my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.” This is exactly what happens in the gospel of Matthew.
- In a similar vein, much of what happened on the cross is reminiscent of Psalm 22.
- “You bury me in the ash of death,” I say.
- Many additional texts in the Bible predict the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.
- The most important conclusion to take away from all of this is that Jesus did not appear out of nowhere.
- Using episodes from Israel’s own history, Jesus says that he is the means of redemption and salvation, and that he is the one who inaugurates salvation.
- Only in him can we find complete and total atonement.
- While we do not have time to discuss all of the ways in which Jesus fulfills Israel’s prophetic history at this time, experts have estimated that Jesus fulfilled about 400 messianic prophesies throughout his lifetime.
Putting the Two Together
We cannot place greater emphasis on one facet of Christ’s existence than on another. If we place too much reliance on Jesus as the divine Messiah, we run the risk of making him seem distant, detached, and unapproachable to others. By exaggerating Christ’s humanity, we risk making him seem to be just another wise sage from a bygone age, whose words may be inspiring, but whose presence is snatched from our hearts and minds. The two are held together by a strong Christian faith. Christ does not have two distinct and diametrically opposed personalities.
- Jesus was a real-life human being with flesh and blood.
- Jesus likewise yearned for water in the same way that we do.
- He was the anointed Messiah, in whom all of God’s fullness was delighted to dwell, and he was the Son of God (Colossians 2:9).
- Jesus has complete control over the things that no other human being can influence.
- His love reaches us regardless of the circumstances in which we find ourselves.
- We may satisfy our deepest longings because Jesus thirsted on the cross, and he is able to do so because he thirsted.
- It is because of Jesus’ death on the cross that he meets us in the realm of death and changes it into a place of eternal life for us to experience.
- Thankfully, because of God’s kindness, this is not the case, as Jesus himself stated, “I thirst.” Continuing Your Education “I Thirst,” Jesus’ words in John 19:28, have a tremendous amount of weight behind them.
- He holds a degree in Spiritual Formation and is frequently commissioned to write or talk on topics such as the nature of Christian community and the significance of Spiritual disciplines in Christian life.
- His personal blog may be accessed at this location.
- With this website, we hope to offer you with easy-to-read articles that address your concerns regarding the meaning, origin, and history of certain passages in the context of Scripture.
“Be still and know that I am God,” the Bible says. “Pray Without Ceasing” is an adage that has stuck with me. “It is a work of art that has been fearfully and wonderfully created.” The phrase “All Things Work Together for Good” means “Do Not Be Afraid.”
How Did Jesus Fulfill Prophecy by Saying ‘I Thirst’?
In the nearly six hours that Jesus Christ was crucified, our Lord made seven final words to those who witnessed them. John 19:28 records one of those utterances, “Later, knowing that all had now been completed and that Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus remarked, ‘I am thirsty.’ ”
I Thirst Meaning
The fulfillment of Scripture is connected to Jesus’ words “I thirst,” according to the Apostle John. During the 24 hours preceding the Lord’s death, at least 20 Old Testament prophesies were fulfilled, according to historians. Because John emphasized the ways in which Old Testament texts were fulfilled throughout Jesus’ crucifixion, he demonstrated that everything was proceeding according to God’s plan. Psalm 22:15 states that Jesus’ words from the cross, “I thirst,” were an allusion to a prophesy in which he stated, “My mouth is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue adheres to the roof of my mouth; you bury me in the dust of death.” Regarding the division of Jesus’ clothing among the Roman soldiers, the Apostle John had mentioned this same psalm previously in his writings (John 19:23).
- Vinegar was the cheapest and most accessible type of wine for troops to get.
- Earlier, Jesus turned down a drink of vinegar, gall, and myrrh that was presented to Him in order to alleviate His distress (Matthew 27:34;Mark 15:23).
- “I’m thirsty,” though, and so he asks for a glass here, some hours after the last statement.
- According to Psalm 69:21, “They put gall in my meal and vinegar in my thirst,” this action fulfilled the prophecy.
- He then bends His head and surrenders His spirit to the Father (John 19:30).
- A drink is requested by the Lord in order for Him to be able to clearly and strongly announce His last pronouncement, “It is completed.”
Why Did Jesus Say ‘I Thirst’?
On the crucifixion, Jesus endured excruciating anguish and darkness while being wrapped in our guilt, sin, and shame, as we all do. When the process of purchasing our redemption was completed, there was nothing further that could be done. Everything that Jesus had come to perform on this world had now been completed. The prophecies of the Bible were fulfilled. Christ’s task had been completed, the fight had been won, and the triumph had been secured. All that God had planned, and all that the prophets had predicted, had come to fruition, and Jesus willingly submitted Himself to death.
- “Jesus cried out with a loud voice, ‘Father, into your hands I submit my soul,'” according to Luke’s account.
- From the crucifixion, Jesus cried out, “I thirst,” because He desired to have His lips and neck wet in order to make one more victory yell before He died.
- The Lamb of God paid our debt and removed our guilt via his substitutionary and sacrificial death on the cross.
- With our ransom paid in full, Jesus declared in a booming voice that all people should hear these words: “It is completed!” These words resonate in our ears today as well.
Nonetheless, in those words, we see the intentional sensitivity of the Good Teacher as He infuses these words into Scripture for our edification and benefit (2 Timothy 3:16-17). The words I thirst reflect a great deal about their speaker’s character.
Jesus Fulfilled Scripture
It is reasonable to assume that anyone knowledgeable with the Old Testament would have been drawn to Jesus’ scream of desperation. “I thirst” reinforced Jesus’ promise that in Jerusalem, “all that has been recorded about the Son of Man by the prophets would be fulfilled” in at least two ways (Luke 18:31). First and foremost, God predicted that His Messiah would be thirsty. When Jesus shouted out the opening lines of Psalm 22: “My God, my God, why have you left me?” he was in a state of complete devastation.
Another point to note is that before Jesus came to earth, He stated via David that He would drink bitterness: “For my thirst they gave me sour wine to drink” (Psalm 69:21).
1, 2, and 15), his throat was dry (v.
Jesus, who was wallowing in a sea of grief, was given only bitter wine to quench His parched mouth.
Jesus Suffered as a Real Man
The fact that Jesus was feigning to be thirsty was not intended to highlight spiritual truths. Despite the fact that we live in a sin-torn world, our High Priest understands and sympathizes with all of the suffering and agony that comes with it (Hebrews 4:15). Those ears on Calvary, where the sticky crackling of His dry mouth could be heard, are the ears into which we should express our pains and cry out for pardon and mercy if ever there were compassionate ears to hear us (v. 16).
Jesus Bore Our Thirst-Curse
According to the Old Testament, God threatened to turn Israel into a “parched country, and fill her with thirst” if she did not repent (Hosea 2:3;Deuteronomy 28:48). A person who has been afflicted by God’s judgment has a tongue that “sticks to the roof of its mouth because it is thirsty” (Lamentations 4:4;Amos 8:11). This was the curse for those who committed spiritual adultery (Psalm 137:6). Surprisingly, Jesus interjected Himself into the story of the rich man and Lazarus. A man in hell called out for compassion, imploring Lazarus to “dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in misery here in this inferno,” since he was “in anguish in this flame” (Luke 16:24).
Likewise, for as long as Christ was subjected to the horrible pain of God’s anger against sin, Christ’s tongue rattled in His mouth.
Were His cells not charred by the acidic vinegar that washed across them?
Only a few hours before, Jesus trembled in anticipation of His impending cup of sorrow (Matthew 26:36-46).
His drinking of the wine was similar to that of someone suffering from dehydration and drinking salt water to alleviate the symptoms. On the cross, the Mediator of the covenant of grace was subjected to the thirst-curse that covenant violators are subjected to.
Jesus Thirsted for His People
We are the thirsty ones by nature, as a result of our rejection of God, “the spring of living waters,” and our hewing ourselves into “broken cisterns that can contain no water” (Jeremiah 2:13). They are “parched with thirst” because they have strayed from God (Isaiah 5:13). We are spiritually dehydrated, which is a life-threatening state. When Jesus cries out from behind his closed lips, all He gets is a mouthful of sour wine in response. Why? Because, on the cross, He “redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us,” He has earned our gratitude (Galatians 3:13).
He has the authority to announce, “It is completed” in regards to our redemption (v.
Throughout Scripture, Christ is represented as the rock from which the wandering Israelites drank in the wilderness (1 Corinthians 10:14) and as the Living Water that rehydrated the woman at the well (John 4:14).
The Living Water became thirsty on the cross, therefore providing the salvation that His spiritually thirsty people so urgently required.
Jesus Refreshes His People
Jesus died with a parched mouth, but He rose with a refreshed one. The full restoration of His Father’s fellowship was Jesus’ greatest desire during his suffering, and he longed for the day when the smile on His Father’s face might be turned toward Him and His people once more (Psalm 69:16-17). His hunger was filled as a result of His glory, which began with His resurrection. God will hear the cries of His thirsty people and will respond (Isaiah 41:17). “Whoever believes in me will never thirst,” he now declares to us in part (John 6:35).
- Give me the drink of eternal life that was purchased for me on the cross so that I will never longer thirst!” It is a picture painted in the last book of the Bible that provides the solution to this request: “They shall no longer hunger nor thirst anymore” (Revelation 7:16).
- What Was the Importance of the Woman at the Well in the Bible?
- Did Jesus’ desire to give the cup to God on the cross cause His love for God to be diminished?
- Was the Crucifixion as depicted in the medical literature?
- More than 1,200 of her pieces have been published in a variety of journals, ranging from Writer’s Digest to Keys for Kids, among others.
- Jenkins and Michelle Medlock Adams.
She is also a co-author of the Dear Heroduology, which was published by INtense Publications and is available for purchase online. Her inspirational adult novel Picture Imperfect, which will be released in November of 2021, will also be released. You may learn more about her by visiting her website.
‘I Thirst’: What Did Jesus Mean?
What do you see in your mind’s eye when you visualize the face of Jesus? What image do you have in your mind of him? Is he a gentle and tranquil person? Do you want to be strong and courageous? Is he showing mercy by extending his hand? In our culture, there are countless representations of Christ who reveal himself to us in a variety of ways. But when I think of his face in my mind, I don’t usually picture him all bloodied and wailing in pain on the Cross from the wounds of his passion, despite the fact that is the Jesus we encounter.
We sit at the foot of the Cross, like Mary and John, and look upon the wounded face of our savior as he suffers the agonies of death.
Jesus never said a word in vain, and neither did anybody else.
The “Seven Last Words of Jesus” are recorded in the Gospels, and each of them is filled with so much meaning for each of us individually and as a Church.
The Weight of Words
In my one-bedroom apartment, I have a picture of Jesus crucified on the wall next to my bed, which I find comforting. The words “I Thirst” are shown next to this photograph. When we look at the life of the Son, we can witness the power of God’s words from the moment of the Incarnation onward. As a result of our sin in the Garden of Eden, God devised a plan to bring us back to himself. He didn’t want to be without us, so he made his promise of redemption physically come to life in the form of a man.
Regardless of the fact that we serve a God who has triumphed over sin and death, we are all given this image of Our Lord to contemplate as we listen to his final words from the Cross.
What was the point of saying those words?
The Nature of Thirst
What exactly is thirst? When I think of that word, the first thing that comes to me is a sense of emptiness—or even excessive thirst that has to be quenched—that must be addressed. The final moments of Jesus’ life on the Cross show him surrendering himself to very human, vulnerable sentiments of emptiness and need, both in his physical body and in his spiritual heart. He permits himself to be dragged to the depths of the ocean of thirst. As he is pushed to his limits and on the verge of death, he experiences physical hunger.
- Although Jesus is moaning for something larger and even more meaningful in his final words before death, as many saints and academics have pointed out, he is thirsting for something much more significant: souls.
- We learn about Divine Mercy via a private revelation of Jesus to St.
- When they refuse to embrace them, oh, what anguish they cause Me!
- When it comes to pure love, it is by its very nature a gift—and what is Jesus’ thirst as he hangs there on the Cross?
A love that is absolutely choking on the opportunity to spill out over us from his wounded side Until we cease rejecting his love and perform an act of submission and faith in order to receive his love, his hunger will not be filled.
His Thirst Meets Our Thirst
St. Teresa of Calcutta was extremely committed to the thirsting Christ on the Cross, and she was known for her devotion. She had the words “I Thirst” scrawled all over the walls of the Missionaries of Charity’s headquarters. Mother Teresa drew a parallel between Jesus’ thirst and our own thirst. “I hunger,” she said to the nuns, “is a far more profound statement than Jesus just saying ‘I love you.'” You can’t begin to understand who Jesus wants to be for you unless you have a deep-seated conviction that He thirsts for you.
On the Cross, Jesus experienced the hunger of all humanity—the unique desire of every human heart that yearns to be satisfied and totally known—and he was satisfied and fully known.
In the Gospel, we read about Jesus offering water to a thirsty woman, about his blood and water pouring from his side, about the same life water he promised us in the parable: “Let everyone who is thirsty come to me, and let the one who believes in me drink.” 7:37 (John 7:37)
He Stands at the Door
Are you prepared to encounter Jesus in the midst of his thirst and to place your faith in him? Allow him to meet you in your thirst with a sip of living water if you agree to let him. Let us remember the thirst of our Savior for our hearts as we celebrate Easter this week, and let us hear these words from Jesus to us, as expressed by Mother Teresa: “No matter how far you may wander, no matter how often you forget Me, no matter how many crosses you may bear in this life; there is one thing I want you to always remember, one thing that will never change.” I FEEL FOR YOU, JUST AS YOU FEEL FOR ME.
- You are not need to change in order to believe in My love, for it is your belief in My love that will cause you to change.
- Do you find it difficult to trust what you’re reading?
- Have you not grasped the significance of My cross?
- 69:20 in the Psalms Since the beginning of your life, I’ve been searching for your affection—I’ve never stopped hoping to love you and be loved by you.
- When you do open the door of your heart, when you come close enough, you will hear Me say to you again and again, not in simple human words, but in spirit, anytime you do open that door.
Come to Me with your misery and sins, with your troubles and needs, and with your deepest yearning to be loved.” I’m standing at the threshold of your heart, knocking. “Be open to Me, for I DESIRE TO MEET YOU.” This is an excerpt from Mother Teresa’s “I Thirst” prayer.
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Taylor Tripodi is a cradle Catholic from Cleveland, Ohio, who is pursuing sainthood. He is 24 years old and lives in Cleveland. Taylor graduated from Franciscan University with a degree in theology and catechetics, and he is now a full-time singer who travels the world, preaching God’s unchanging love through song and word. Taylor is married with two children. Makes aromatic candles in her leisure time, travels to new places in search of excitement, and is always present for her huge, eccentric Italian family.
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“I Thirst”: More Here Than Meets The Eye
One of the seven final remarks made by Jesus that are recorded in the gospels is one that appears to be nearly unimportant at first inspection. “I’m thirsty,” he says just before he is put to death. This straightforward speech seemed to be out of place with the other, more theatrical declarations he made from his deathbed. However, there is more to this story than meets the eye. Consider some of the probable reasons why John would record these statements, as well as what he would have hoped his readers would take away from these brief observations.
- What passage of Scripture was Jesus quoting when he made this statement?
- “Look, everything I’m doing right now was written hundreds of years ago,” he explained.
- A second apparent purpose for include these remarks in his account of the crucifixion is to draw attention to Jesus’ humanity, as already stated.
- However, the phrase “I thirst” emphasizes his humanity.
- Typically, a nurse, hospice worker, or a loved one will arrive with a cup of ice chips and a spoon, with which they will place one or two chips on the person’s tongue.
- It has been soaked in water, and the dying person can suck on the sponge to prolong his or her life.
- Jesus was human, and he thirsted in the same way that others do when they are dying.
- The cup was passed to Jesus at the Last Supper, and he declared, “This is my blood of the new covenant” (Matthew 26:28 NKJV).
Similar to this, in John 18:11, when Jesus was being arrested, Peter pulled his sword, but Jesus instructed him to “put your sword back into its sheath.” Is it not my responsibility to drink from the cup that the Father has given me?” At least three times in the Gospels, Jesus utilized a metaphor of drinking to describe the anguish he would face on the crucifixion.
Given that he was getting close to the finish line, it’s possible that he was referring to the fact that the cup was nearly empty.
In the fourth chapter of John, Jesus encounters a Samaritan woman at Jacob’s Well.
Among her own people, she is most likely considered an outsider.
After that, he continues, “If you knew who you were talking to, you wouldn’t hesitate to beg of me, and I would give you live water, so that you’d never thirst again.” In a same vein, in John 7, Jesus addressed the throngs of people gathered in Jerusalem, saying, “Let anybody who is thirsty come to me, and let anyone who believes in me drink” (verse 37).
As he hangs on the cross, the one who was once the source of living water is now thirsty.
The spring is on the verge of being extinguished.
All of these interpretations of Jesus’ words, “I thirst,” are plausible.
The following is an extract from the bookFinal Words From the Cross. Other posts in this series may be found here:
- “Father, forgive them.”
- “My God, My God, Why have You forsaken Me?”
Why Did Jesus Say “I Thirst” On the Cross? A Sermon on John 19:28-29
I had the opportunity of giving the Good Friday sermon at our home church in Raleigh this year. My invitation to preach came with the explanation that I would be continuing a series of the final seven words of Jesus, and the words I would preach would be the words “I thirst,” which are recorded in John 19:28. I accepted the invitation. At first sight, I was perplexed as to how I could possibly present a complete sermon based just on these lines. However, as I started to study them, I began to worry how I would be able to present only one sermon based on these words!
- I wanted to publish it here as well as my sermon transcript in case anyone would prefer read it.
- In the event that you knew you only had a few hours left to live, who would you want to speak with and what words would you use?
- When people have this opportunity- to think over and deliver their “last words,” it may have a huge impact.
- Yet words also have the impact of revealing the heart of the one uttering them- who they love, what their dreams and worries are, whether they are pleased, joyous, or terrified.
- They are spoken to those whom Jesus loves, they offer hope, encouragement, direction, but ultimately revealwho He isandwhat He is doing.
And He utters the words, “ I thirst.” At first glance, we might be tempted to think that this saying is not as important as the other sayings such as “why have you forsaken me?” or “it is finished.” But this phrase actually reveals a great deal about Jesus and the nature of His work on our behalf.
- First, that Jesus suffered physically.
- And that Jesus provides for our thirst.
- Let’s begin by considering the first revelation: That Jesus Suffered Physically.
- It means that Jesus’ declaration of thirst comes at the tail end of His sacrifice on the cross.
- His work of dying a sacrificial death was nearly complete.
- Just like we feel the feeling of sleep coming over us when we lay in the bed at night, Jesus begins to feel the wave of death crashing toward Him.
Consider how the German theologian Friedrich Krummacher describes this thirst in his book,The Suffering Savior:“ The blood vessels of His sacred body are almost dried up.
His tongue cleaves to His jaws.
As we will see, there is beautiful spiritual significance behind this phrase, but Jesus was not pretending to be thirsty to illustrate these truths.
He suffered as a real man.
And on the cross, he bears this suffering acutely, experiencing the full effect of what we have caused by our sin as he bears them on the cross.
Try to imagine what Jesus felt, what he experienced, what this feeling of thirst was like.
However, the experience of “thirst” was not a random effect of the fall that Jesus experienced.
Jesus Fulfilled Scripture Look back at verse 28 with me.
This qualification is helpful because we probably wouldn’t naturally think “fulfillment of Scripture” when we read Jesus saying he thirsts.
First, Psalm 22 .
In the fifteenth verse of this chapter, the psalmist says, “ my strength is dried up like a potsherd,and my tongue sticks to my jaws;you lay me in the dust of death.” The psalmist’s experience of suffering and a sense of forsakenness is described as a loss of strength, an unquenchable thirst, and a feeling of death.
- Second, Jesus fulfills Psalm 69.
- For the waters have come up to my neck.
- I am wearing with my crying out;my throat is parched.
- The psalmist goes on to say that he looked for pity, for relief for his thirst, but was only given sour wine to drink.
- I looked for pity, but there was none, and for comforters, but I found none.
- Look with me in verse 29, “ A jar full of sour wine stood there, so they put a sponge full of the sour wine on a hyssop branch and held it to his mouth.” Jesus fulfilled Psalm 69.
Therefore let us look to Christ on the cross as the One who fulfilled the Scriptures.
Everything was going according to plan.
Be encouraged that this is the God we worship- who makes promises- and who fulfills them- all the way to the finest detail.
Why wasthirsta part of Scripture that needed fulfillment in the first place?
Jesus Provided for Our Thirst To understand this point, we have to go back to the beginning, where God created Adam and Eve.
Beautiful scenery, and plentiful water.
Until they disobeyed God by eating of the one tree He commanded them not to eat from.
All of these things pointed to their broken relationship with Him- what they had lost.
This nation was the nation of Israel, with whom God made a covenant- a promise- to be their God and they be his people.
These would lead to covenant blessings if kept, but if disobeyed, they would lead to covenant curses.
In Deuteronomy 28:48,God warns the Israelites that they will be sent into exile if they break the covenant, where they will serve their enemies inhunger, and nakedness, andthirst.
God’s people forsake Him, which Jeremiah describes as forsaking the fountain of living waters and digging their own cisterns which can hold no water (Jeremiah 2:13).
God sends them into exile, where Jeremiah describes their judgment by highlightingthirstof the children (Lamentations 4).
But there’s hope.
When the suffering servant comes, the invitation of Isaiah 55:1 is given, “ Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters” And for those who come, God promises, “ shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail”(58:11) (58:11).
It was a sign of our broken relationship with God.
It was a physical representation of our spiritual dehydration.
Our need for someone to bear our thirst- curse and give us living water.
That is who Jesus is.
The drink that I will give him will become in him a fountain of water welling up to eternal life.” Also in John 6:35, Christ declares, “Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” We learn something new about ourselves as a result of Jesus’ words, “I thirst,” in that He is giving what the curse of bodily thirst alludes to: our spiritual hunger!
That is, he becomes thirsty in our place, even though he has fully fulfilled God’s instructions, in order for God to provide us with a “well of water welling up to eternal life,” even though he has done nothing wrong.
And even if He dies, He will rise from the grave, ascend to the right side of the Father, and provide eternal life to anyone who repents of their sins and places their confidence in Him and his work on the cross, regardless of their race, gender, or sexual orientation.
That’s the source of eternal life, a spring of water bubbling up from the ground.
Have you taken it at face value?
Have you placed your faith in Christ, who died on the cross to pay for your sins?
If that’s the case, put your faith in Him!
And, if you place your faith in Christ, take comfort in the knowing that He has taken on the form of our thirst-curse.
Enjoy it, think about it, and give thanks to the One who provides us with this life water.
At first glance, the tale of Jesus’ hunger in the account of his crucifixion may appear to be a small footnote in the narrative.
As we’ve seen, it reveals that Jesus suffered physically during his life.
And I’d want to close by challenging you to appreciate, adore, and follow Jesus even in the midst of our tribulations in this world, which includes all we are currently facing right now.
However, we have seen today that Christ was subjected to these consequences in order to eventually eliminate them in eternity.
Consider what the book of Revelation says of our home and individuals who have placed their faith in Christ: “They are before the throne of God, serving him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will shield them with his presence.
Because the Lamb who sits in the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will lead them to springs of fresh water, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.
In the end, Jesus, who provides us with the waters of eternal life, will take us home to a place where these things will no longer exist.
I invite you to join me in celebrating and delighting in this reality today, and to keep pressing forward toward the day when we shall enter our everlasting home, where he will continue to guide us by springs of living water for the rest of our lives. Amen.