Redemption Through HIS Blood
Pastor David L. Brown, Ph.D.
Sermon Delivered 2/19/05
"Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: 13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: 14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:" Colossians 1:12-14
When we were doing family research recently, we discovered that some of our early relatives owned slaves! That really should come as no surprise since slaves were brought to America early in our history and continued in the north until after the Revolutionary War and in the South until the conclusion of the Civil War. African slaves were bought and sold as property at the owner’s whim. A 1662 Virginia law assumed Africans would remain slaves for life, and a 1667 act declared that Christian "Baptism doth not alter the condition of the person as to his bondage or freedom." By 1740 the SLAVERY system in colonial America was fully developed. A Virginia law in that year declared slaves to be "chattel personal in the hands of their owners and possessors for all intents, construction, and purpose whatsoever."
This point really came home to me when we visited Fredricksburg, VA. There on one of the corners was a pillar of stone marked as the location where slaves were brought and sold.
Now, perhaps you are wondering why I am talking about slavery, especially because this message is about the biblical doctrine of redemption. It is because, outside of Christ, men and women are slaves, spiritually speaking. Let me explain.
Before a person trusts Christ as personal Savior he or she is a slave in the dominion of darkness, Satan’s dominion (Colossians 1:13). Galatians 4:3 it is described as being "…in bondage under the elements of the world." The word "bondage" is a translation of the Greek word dedoulwmenoi dedoulomenoi (de-doulo-men-oi), which means to be made a slave. Those who are not saved are slaves to the principles and practices of the world, according to this verse.
There’s more. Turn to Romans 6:17 "But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you." The word servants is a translation of a similar Greek word, douloi douloi, which means a slave. Simply stated, all unsaved people are slaves of sin, or as Romans 7:14 says, "sold under sin." That phrase means, "entirely under the control of sin."
Perhaps the most basic definition of redemption is "liberation because a payment is made." (Basic Theology; Charles Ryrie; p. 290). The word redeem is a term that has it roots in the world of commerce or business. In fact, it was a term specifically used in the slave markets describing the act of buying a slave from the market in order to give the slave freedom. When you redeemed someone it included both the idea of deliverance and the price paid for the slave also called the ransom. Bancroft says it this way: redemption "is borrowed from the transactions among men, such as the release of a captive upon the payment of a ransom, or the release of an imprisoned debtor by liquidating his debt." (Elemental Theology; Emery H. Bancroft; p. 127). When you understand these concepts you can see that New Testament redemption is "deliverance from the enslavement of sin and release to a new freedom by the sacrifice of the Redeemer, Jesus Christ. The death of Christ is the redemptive price." (Handy Dictionary of the Bible; Merril C. Tenny; p. 127).
In order for us to understand biblical redemption we need
to look at the three words associated with redemption in the
New Testament. These three words demonstrate the three aspects of
redemption. The three words are…
exagorazw exagorazo (ex-ag-or-ad’-zo)
lutrow lutroo (loo-tro’-o)
agorazw - agorazo
We will begin by taking a look at the agorazw – agorazo. This word is used 31 times in the New Testament. Three times it is translated redeem and twenty eight times it is translated bought or buy. This word means to buy in the market place. Agorazo pictures the Lord Jesus Christ going into the slave market of this sinful, fallen world and paying the full price to redeem men. The natural question is, "What was the price to redeem us?" For the answer, turn to 1 Peter 1:18-19 "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; 19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:" Turn to Hebrews 9:12 "Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us." As the song states, Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb!
Agorazo appears in the following verses –
1 Corinthians 6:20 "For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."
1 Corinthians 7:23 "Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men."
Revelation 5:9 "And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;"
The first aspect of redemption is this. The Holy,
Harmless, Son of God left the splendors of Heaven to come into this cursed
world, this slave market and paid the full price to redeem us, to buy us.
Now, let’s move on to the second aspect of redemption.
As you can see, this is a similar to the previous word we looked at. The key difference is that the Greek preposition ex is added to the front of the word. Ex means out from. Therefore, the word means to buy out of the market. So, what are the ramifications? Jesus Christ not only paid the purchase price to for us, but He also completely removed the believing sinner from the dominion of Satan and the position being a condemned slave. I like what Bancroft says about it – "The redeemed are never again to be exposed for sale." (Elemental Theology; p.128).
Exagorazo appears in Galatians 3:13 "Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:" Next, turn to Galatians 4:5 "To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons."
Hence, we are purchased (agorazo) and
then brought out of devil’s dark dominion. Not that brings us to
the final aspect of out redemption…
This Greek word means to loose, to set free by paying a price. As I just told you, we are purchased (agorazo). Then we brought out of devil’s dark dominion. Then we are set free to live a life of spiritual freedom in Christ. Though the word redeemed is not used in John 5:24 this verse catches the excitement of being set free. "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life."
Titus 2:14 "Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works."
1 Peter 1:18 "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;"
Ephesians 1:7 "In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;"
I can’t imagine why anyone would want to remain being a
slave when the price of their freedom has already been bought and paid
for! The Savior is inviting you to receive Him. If you will confess that
you are a sinner and turn to Jesus Christ and call upon His name to save
you, He will save you from the guilt, penalty and power of sin this very
moment. Why remain a slave when you do not have to be?