Seven times, Jesus spoke from the cross. His seventh utterance is recorded by the physician: “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” (Luke 23:46, ESV).
We can suppose that a doctor, like Luke, had seen many men die. Some fought death and cursed God. Others, with their dying breath, begged with fear-filled eyes, asking the grim-reaper to go away. A few others passed from this life, into everlasting life, with confident faith and peaceful hope. This was the passing of Jesus.
Seven is the perfect number, the number of completion. On the seventh day, the Creator rested. On the seventh day, the Creator commanded His creatures to rest. And with this seventh saying, Jesus relaxed, with total tranquility, He rested.
David had a confident assurance. “The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want... Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever” (Psalm 23:1-6, ESV). And “in you, O LORD, do I take refuge; let me never be put to shame; in your righteousness deliver me! ... For you are my rock and my fortress; and for your name’s sake you lead me and guide me ... Into your hand I commit my spirit; you have redeemed me, O LORD, faithful God” (Psalm 31:1-5, ESV).
You didn’t miss that, did you? David sang, “Into your hand I commit my spirit.”
It must have been an exceptionally powerful moment when Jesus spoke His last words. The record says, “Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, ‘Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!’ And having said this he breathed his last. Now when the centurion saw what had taken place, he praised God, saying, ‘Certainly this man was innocent!’ And all the crowds that had assembled for this spectacle, when they saw what had taken place, returned home beating their breasts” (Luke 23:46-48, ESV).
Standing beneath the cross, the Centurion, a skilled and hardened soldier, an officer in the Roman army, responded. He “praised God” and testified to Christ’s obvious innocence. The crowds that had recently reviled and mocked, walked away remorsefully “beating their breasts.”
Jesus lived a sinless life, unique among all mankind. And Jesus’ passing was like none other.
But think about the statement itself...
“Father!” Such affection! Such respect and honor!
“Father, into your hands...” It was His hands that fashioned the universe. It is His loving hands that form a child in the womb ... Strong and gentle hands.
“Father, into your hands I commit...” Trustfully devoted to His eternal plan!
“Father, into your hands I commit my spirit” His inner-most being, His Spirit...
Shouldn’t that be our prayer, today and every day! “Father, into Your hands, I commit my spirit!”