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John 19:28-29


From the cross, Jesus uttered seven last words. For the next seven days, we will focus solely on these words.

Fourth Word: John 19:28-29

After this, when Jesus knew that all was now finished, he said (in order to fulfill the scripture), "I am thirsty." A jar full of sour wine was standing there. So they put a sponge full of the wine on a branch of hyssop and held it to his mouth.

In the darkness of the moment, in the darkness of mind and spirit, in the darkness of hell itself, Jesus becomes aware of his suffering body. He now feels the dehydration of crucifixion; he was consumed by an undeniable thirst. He was swept by waves of delirium. He could see before his eyes the cup in which they had offered him a sedative - which he rejected. We can only imagine what he imagined in his deep, unrelenting thirst - visions of seas and lakes and rivers; visions of walking along the Jordan river, splashing on his feet along the shore; visions of wells and springs of refreshing water. His lips parched, his tongue swollen; a drop of water was the most precious thing on earth.

Suddenly, above the sound of the voices below, quieted by the fear of the darkness that blanketed the land, there came an anguished cry, a cry of one seeking relief, merciful relief. Jesus said,

“I am thirsty.”

Let us pray: Almighty God, your dear Son, our Lord did not go up to joy before first He suffered pain; He did not enter into glory before He was crucified. Mercifully grant that we in faith may walk the way of His cross and find in it the way of life and peace through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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