The Seven Last Words of Jesus #4 “I am thirsty.”

Are these words significant or merely a historical fact in the story of Jesus’ final hours? Who is Jesus, who died on the cross? The emphasis for most believers is that He is “the Christ” and “Son of the living God!” (Matt 16:15-17) He was the Son of God, in the flesh, who’d come “to take away the sins of the world,” “the Lamb of God,” the ultimate and final sacrifice. (John 1:14-15, and 1:29-30)

However, when we consider Jesus’ words,

“I am thirsty” (John 19:28),

we have a tiny glimpse of a vital truth. Jesus was completely, in the flesh, a human being. Though He was God, the source of living water, He became flesh to experience all the human limitations that you and I know well. The only perfect Son of Man gave up the privileges of His infinite being and identified with and became one with the human plight.

Jesus knew only what the Father revealed to Him (Mark 13:32, John 5:20). He understood temptation (Hebrews 4:15), He felt the frustration of not having His needs met (Mark 11:12-14), and He felt the anger of violation (John 2:14-17). His body was limited and needed proper nutrition, vitamins, minerals, water, and air to function properly.

In His final hours on the cross, Jesus experienced complete separation from His Father, the source of life and goodness. As Jesus’ body failed physically, he “thirsted, not only in the flesh but also in His spirit. He knew the complete fulfillment of unity in His relationship with the Father and Spirit. As Jesus hung on the cross, His Father, and source of life, turned away. Death was imminent. And Jesus, isolated, lonely and removed from fellowship with the Father, experienced the fullness of God’s condemnation. (Prov 30:4, John 3:13)

Jesus became fully human to demonstrate that God entered into and can relate to our human experiences. He understood the thoughts, ideas, feelings, and questions of living in the adversary’s domain. And concerning the broken experiences of all of humanity, He promised,

“I am the Way… Follow me…” (John 14:6).

His last words, “I am thirsty,”

are a small reminder of a vital Truth: Jesus understands and has experienced the longings and needs which you and I face daily. (Heb 4:14-16) And it’s because of His human experience Jesus offers grace and the way of hope as no other. 

John 19:28, Mark 11:12-14, John 2:14-17, Hebrews 4:14-16, Prov 30:4, John 3:13, John 14:6, John 19:28-19