Redeemed By Jesus Christ

 

Described

 

Redemption refers to God purchasing us through Jesus’ death from the demands of His own perfect justice and holiness. This results in us being freed or liberated from our old masters – sin, Satan, eternal condemnation and eternal separation from Him – and in us becoming His slaves.

 

We were redeemed by Jesus’ death

 

When we were unsaved sinners, we had unknowingly sold ourselves as slaves to sin, guilt, eternal punishment and Satan. Because of our sin, we had a debt which we owed to God’s justice and holiness. This debt was a punishment involving being separated from God’s Presence eternally in hell.

This debt was unpayable because there is nothing good we could do as condemned sinners which God would accept as equivalent to this debt we owed Him. But as Supreme Ruler and Judge, God mercifully decreed that the death of Jesus Christ was the price God required to pay this debt.

Jesus’ death purchased believers from their slavery to sin, lawlessness, guilt, eternal condemnation and Satan. As a result, believers are now God’s exclusive possession or greatly loved slaves. Every aspect of our lives as believers is now owned by God.

In Galatians 3:13, Paul declares Christ’s death has purchased us out of our previous bondage of living under a Divine sentence of being cursed because of our disobedience to the Law of Moses: “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree’).” Deuteronomy 28:15-68 lists all of the terrible curses that should come upon people who disobey the Law of Moses. It is only because of God’s grace, both in Old and New Testament times, that many of these curses were or are delayed in being fulfilled in unbelievers’ lives.

In Galatians 3:13, Paul reveals that through Jesus Christ being our substitute – taking the equivalent of the punishments or curses we deserved because of our disobedience to the Law of Moses, and thereby becoming a curse in place of us – we have been purchased and therefore set free from slavery to sin, condemnation and curses.

 

The results of redemption

 

1 Corinthians 1:30 states Jesus Christ is our redemption: “But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us…redemption.”

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 and 7:22-23 say we “were bought at a price”. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 says: “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

In 1 Corinthians 7:21-23, Paul speaks of believers being bought at a price, like slaves at slave markets, and becoming slaves of Jesus Christ as a result: “Were you called while a slave? Do not be concerned about it; but if you can be made free, rather use it. For he who is called in the Lord while a slave is the Lord’s freedman. Likewise he who is called while free is Christ's slave. You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of men.”

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 and 7:21-23 contain the basis of the marvellous revelation of how, as slaves of God, we no longer own any of our time, money, possessions, job, interests, recreations, entertainments or anything else relating to ourselves. These are now owned totally by God, as His exclusive possession, to be used in ways He directs and for His glory. The words of 1 Corinthians 6:19 “you are not your own” reflect this wonderful truth and its outworking in our daily lives.

 

The future aspects of Jesus’ redemption of believers

 

Ephesians 1:14 and 4:30 refer to a future day of redemption at Jesus’ Second Coming when the fullest manifestation of the benefits of His redemption of believers will occur. Romans 8:23 refers to the future redemption of our bodies at the resurrection.

 

A common false teaching about redemption

 

One common false teaching is to imagine only a small minority of supposedly “special” Christians need to live as though all their life, time, money and desires are owned by God and that it is not normal Biblical practice for all believers to live this way. This false view suggests living in this way involves a special but optional sacrifice of ourselves to God. But the New Testament word “redemption” means every believer has been totally purchased by God and, as a result, He has 100% owner’s rights over them.

 

Not redeemed in practical experience

 

People who have had easy believism “conversions” in which they did not receive Jesus Christ as Master or Lord have not been redeemed in experience. They have only been potentially redeemed by Jesus’ death. Being redeemed in experience means being freed by God from having sin and lawlessness as our masters and being enslaved by Him as our new Master and Owner.

Some preaching about redemption only emphasises one side of it – being freed or liberated from sin, from the unyielding demands of the Law and from Satan and death. But preaching which does not also stress that redemption involves being enslaved by God to Himself is Biblically imbalanced.

Only God can perfectly judge who is redeemed and who is not. But note that Christian leaders should not give the subjective assurance of redemption to those who show no signs or fruit of having received Jesus Christ as Master or Lord.

 

 

Bible Study Questions

 

1.         Describe what redemption is.

2.         What was the price or payment God required to redeem the human race?

3.         What does Galatians 3:13 teach us?

4.         Explain what 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 and 7:21-23 teach about the redemption of believers.

 

 


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