Saturday, September 27, 2014

September 28, 2014

"Since you call on a Father who judges each man’s work impartially, live your lives as strangers here in reverent fear. For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect."  I Peter 1:17-19

There is an old story about a man by the name of John Griffith, who lived in Oklahoma in 1929. He had lost all he had in the stock market crash. He moved to Mississippi where he took a job as bridge operator for a railroad trestle. In 1937 he was involved in a horrible accident. One day his 8 year-old son, Greg, spent the day with his Dad at work. The boy poked around the office and asked dozens of questions - just like little boys do. The bridge was over a river and whenever a ship came John had to open the bridge to allow the ships to pass. The day the boy was there with his father a ship was coming so John opened up the draw bridge. After a moment or two he realized his son wasn’t in the office and as he looked around, to his horror, John saw his son climbing around on the gears of the draw bridge. He hurried outside to rescue his son but just then he heard a fast approaching passenger train, the Memphis Express, filled with 400 people. He yelled to his son, but the noise of the now clearing ship and the oncoming train made it impossible for the boy to hear him. All of a sudden John Griffith realized his horrible dilemma. If he took the time to rescue his son the train would crash killing all aboard, but if he closed the bridge, the boy we be crushed in the gears. John would sacrifice his son. He made the horrible decision, pulled the lever and closed the bridge. It is said, as the train went by John could see the faces of the passengers, some reading, some even waving, all of them oblivious to the sacrifice that had just been made for them.

Can you imagine being in that awful moment of having to decide between your son and a group of strangers?

I cannot.

God can. God did.

John Griffith sacrificed his son to rescue the lives on that train. God offered His Son to redeem every life on earth.

The term "redeem" is extremely significant. To be redeemed means to be "bought back". It denotes the payment of a ransom in order to release a captive. The original language paints the image of a slave who has been bought out of slavery and into freedom.

When God endured the horror of watching His only Son brutalized on a Roman cross He was paying the price to "redeem" you and me. We had been sold out by Adam's sin and held captive in the kingdom of darkness but Jesus, the Second Adam, offered His life's blood to pay our ransom! Jesus' shed blood was the price to buy us out of slavery!

John Griffith's son was crushed to save a few but God's Son was crushed to redeem all who will believe in Him.

You have been redeemed by the shed blood of Jesus on the cross of Calvary! You were bought out of the slavery of sin and into the glorious freedom of life - eternal life - through the Savior, Jesus Christ.

Through redemption you have:

Deliverance from the curse of the Law (Galatians 3:13; 4:46)
Total and complete forgiveness of sins (Isaiah 44:22; Ephesians 1:7; Hebrews 9:15)
Justification before God. (Romans 3:24)
Sanctification is possible through God's Spirit. (Ephesians 5:25-27
Basis for an eternal inheritance (Hebrews 9:15)
Basis for strategic victory in the spiritual realm. (Colossians 2:14-15; Hebrews 2:14-15)
Basis for adoption as His children. (Ephesians 1:5)

Redeemed, how I love to proclaim it!
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
Redeemed through His infinite mercy,
His child and forever I am.

Redeemed, redeemed,
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
Redeemed, redeemed,
His child and forever I am!

Redeemed, and so happy in Jesus,
No language my rapture can tell;
I know that the light of His presence
With me doth continually dwell.

Redeemed, redeemed,
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
Redeemed, redeemed,
His child and forever I am!