"It is finished." (John 19:30)

When he had received the drink, Jesus said, "It is finished." With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. (John 19:30)

What does Jesus mean by 'it is finished'?

The word “finished” is being translated* from the Greek word, τελέω (teleō), which can mean, “to bring to a close, to finish, to end.” But it can also mean, according to Thayer's lexicon, “to perform, execute, complete, fulfill, (so that the thing done corresponds to what has been said, the order, command, etc.) with special reference to the subject matter, to carry out the contents of a command.”

Thus we find a deeper meaning in Jesus’ statement, rather than just that his physical body was finished. He is speaking of his service to the Supreme Being being completed as instructed by the Supreme Being:
“I love the Father and do exactly what my Father has commanded me.” (John 14:31)

What does 'gave up his spirit' mean?

The Greek word translated to 'spirit' is πνεῦμα (pneuma). According to the lexicon, this means, "the vital principal by which the body is animated." The lexicon goes further, stating:

"a spirit, i.e. a simple essence, devoid of all or at least all grosser matter, and possessed of the power of knowing, desiring, deciding, and acting... a life-giving spirit... a human soul that has left the body."

This is describing the essential person - the person who occupies the physical body for some time and then leaves it at the time of death.

Yes, this is what happens when each of us dies:

Do we all 'give up our spirit' at the time of death?

Death disconnects the spirit-person from the body. And upon the separation of the spirit-person from the body, the body no longer functions.

Then the body begins to decompose. Because there is no spirit-person animating the body.

This is confirmed clearly in the lexicon's definition of spirit above, "the vital principal by which the body is animated."

When the person - who is spirit in essence - is occupying the physical body, the body is animated. When that person leaves the body, the body dies.

This separation of the person with the body has been proven in over 100,000 case studies of clinical death. Clinical death occurs when a person's body clinically dies (i.e., their heart, breathing and brain waves stop) and then is resuscitated. After they are resuscitated they describe separating from the body and looking down upon it, looking at their unconscious body laying on the hospital bed or operating table.

Thousands of these cases have been authenticated by the patient accurately describing what took place in the room - and sometimes elsewhere in the hospital - while they were unconscious.

What about the rapture?

Today we find so many laughable interpretations of the rapture - the apocalypse - even though none of these words are actually used in the scriptures.

Some of these fictitious interpretations describe how beams of light will capture people's bodies and pull them up to heaven, while beasts devour the bodies of those who are not believers at some point in the future.

When is this supposed to happen? Despite continual warnings from fanatical teachers, we find that over and over they have lied to their followers. Consider, for example, the following list of predictions for the end of the world, or rapture, over the centuries:

Hilary of Poitiers: 365 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Martin of Tours: 375 to 400 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Hydatius (Bishop of Aquae) 482 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Sextus Julius Africanus: 500 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Hippolytus of Rome: 500 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Beatus of Leibana: 793 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Gregory of Tours: 799 to 800 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Thiota: 847 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Pope Sylvester II: 1000 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Gerard of Poehlde: 1147 AD (predicted doomsday date)
John of Toledo: 1179 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Joachim of Fiore: 1205 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Pope Innocent III: 1284 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Joachimites: 1290 and 1335 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Jean de Roquetaillade: 1368 and 1370 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Amaldus de Villa Nova: 1378 (predicted doomsday date)
Thomas Muntzer: 1525 AD  (predicted doomsday date)
Johannes Stoffler: 1524 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Hans Hut (Anabaptist): 1528 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Melchior Hoffman (Anabaptist): 1533 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Jan Matthys (Anabaptist): 1534 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Martin Luther (Augustinian monk): 1600 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Christopher Columbus: 1658 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Joseph Mede: 1660 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Sabbatai Zevi: 1648 and 1666 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Fifth Monarchists: 1666 and 1673 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Benjamin Keach (Baptist): 1689 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Pierre Jurieu: 1689 AD (predicted doomsday date)
John Mason (Anglican): 1694 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Johan Heinrich Alsted (Calvinist): 1694 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Cotton Mather (Puritan): 1697, 1716 and 1736 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Henry Archer (Fifth Monarchist): 1700 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Cardinal Nicholas of Cusa: 1700 to 1734 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Camisards: 1705 and 1708 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
William Whitson: 1736 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Emanuel Swedenborg (Lutheran): 1757 AD (predicted doomsday date)
The Shakers (Ann Lee): 1792 and 1794 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Cardinal Pierre d'Ailly: 1789 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Charles Wesley (Methodist): 1794 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Christopher Love (Presbyterian): 1805 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Margaret McDonald: 1830 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Joseph Smith (Mormon): 1832 and 1891 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Johann Albrecht Bengel (Lutheran): 1846 AD (predicted doomsday date)
John Wesley (Methodist founder): 1836 AD (predicted doomsday date)
William Miller (Millerites founder): 1843 and 1844 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
George Rapp (Harmony Society founder): 1847 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Harriet Livermore: 1847 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Ellen White (Seven Day Adventists): 1850, 1856 and "early 1900s" AD (predicted doomsday dates)
John Cumming: 1862 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Joseph Morris (Mormon): 1862 AD (predicted doomsday date)
John Wroe (Christian Israelite Church): 1863 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Jonas Wendell and other Adventist preachers: 1863, 1874, 1870 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Mother Shipton: 1881 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Wovoka (Ghost Dance): 1890 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Catholic Apostolic Church: 1901 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society (Jehovah's Witnesses): 1914, 1915, 1918, 1920, 1925, 1941, 1975, 1994 and others more recent. (predicted doomsday dates)
Margaret Rowen (Seventh-Day Adventist): 1920 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Spencer Perceval (Catholic Apostolic Church): 1926 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Wilbur Glenn Voliva: 1935 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Herbert Armstrong (Worldwide Church of God founder): 1936 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Florence Houteff (Branch Davidians): 1959 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Johann Bischoff (New Apostolic Church): 1951 and 1960 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Jim Jones (People's Temple cult): 1967 AD (predicted doomsday date)
George Williams (Church of the Firstborn): 1969 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Herbert Armstrong (Worldwide Church of God): 1972 AD (predicted doomsday date)
John Wroe (Christian Israelite Church): 1977 AD (predicted doomsday date)
William Branham (evangelist): 1977 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Chuck Smith (Calvary Chapel): 1981 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Pat Robertson (evangelist): 1982 and 2007 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Lester Sumrall (Pentecostal): 1985 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Edgar Whisenant: 1988 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Elizabeth Clare (Summit Lighthouse): 1990 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Rollen Stewart: 1992 AD (predicted doomsday date)
David Berg (The Family): 1993 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Harold Camping: 1994, 1995, 2011 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Ronald Weinland (Church of God): 2011 and 2012 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Aggai: 1997 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Marshall Applewhite (Heavens Gate cult): 1997 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Archbishop James Ussher: 1997 AD (predicted doomsday date)
James Gordon Lindsay (Christ for the Nations): 1999 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Jerry Falwell (evangelist): 2000 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Ed Dobson: 2000 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Lester Sumrall: 2000 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Jonathan Edwards (Congr. Protestant): 2000 AD (predicted doomsday date)
David Meade: 2017 and 2018 AD (predicted doomsday dates)

Why were they all wrong? They have misinterpreted the scriptures because they decided to use the Scriptures to further their ambitions. They manipulated texts and interpretations to make believe that Jesus was predicting the end of the world. They decided they would attract followers by predicting that date.

Today we refer to this as a cult. A cult is typically formed by a power-hungry leader who manipulates the truth in order to take advantage of others.

Because most people are afraid of dying, it is fairly standard to reign control over a large number of people by threatening that they will die if they don't follow the cult leader.

There are of course variations in this. In this case of predicting the end of the world, most of these cult leaders add in the threat that those who don't follow them and their institution will go to hell.

So not only are the followers threatened with death (end of the world), but also with going to hell after death.

That's a scenario that most simply will not want to change. So the cult gains many followers based upon these lies.

This is what has happened with many of the sects that are mentioned above, founded upon threats that the world will end - combined with threats that we will go to hell unless we join their institution.

That's what cult leaders do: They threaten people with false claims about the future in order to gain followers and control those followers' beliefs.

*Here is the translation of this verse from the Lost Gospels of Jesus:
Then when Jesus had received the vinegar he said, “It has been accomplished!” And he bowed his head and released his spirit. (John 19:30)