A redeemer is the one paying the price to buy back or purchase redemption for something or someone.

In the OT there was an understanding of a divine Redeemer (Job 19:25; Ps 19:14, 78:35). Yahweh (God) is Israel’s Redeemer – the one who promises to defend, rescue and bring deliverance to His chosen people (Ex 20:2; Ps 82:4; Dan 6:27; Jer 20:13; Ezek 34:10-12,22).

This is graphically portrayed in the life of the widow Ruth, when Boaz, a male relative, acted responsibly on her behalf as a kinsman-redeemer (Ruth 3:1-4:22). Such a person could deliver or rescue both people and property from trouble, danger or need (Gen 48:16; Ex 6:6; Lev 27:9-25, 25:47-55).

Because of sin all humanity is doomed to eternal death (damnation and separation) from a holy God for “The soul that sins, it shall die” (Ezek 18:20). There was only one way out of this predicament; this was predicted some 700 years before it came to pass (Isa 53:1-12). Jesus became our redeemer by dying in our place (Col 1:13,14). Although He potentially took the sin of the whole world, it is only those who repent of their sin and ask forgiveness who are justified or cleansed, freed from the penalty, and so experience eternal life. Those who don’t become followers of Christ “Will die in their sin” and suffer eternal damnation because of their refusal to acknowledge and believe in Jesus who is humanity’s only way out of this dilemma (Act 4:12).

Why was the sacrifice of Jesus so significant? He was sinless and had lived a life that was perfect in every way (Heb 7:26,27; 1 Jn 3:5). He alone lived up to the demands of God, and so was the only one who could satisfy the requirements to be our substitute, having the right to release us from the sentence of eternal death (Gal 3:13,14). Jesus substituted His life for ours so that we could be fully restored to relationship with God. When He went to the cross, He became our kinsman-redeemer, doing for us what we were incapable of doing for ourselves by paying the price for our sin.

We have been redeemed “by the blood of Christ”, that is, His sacrifice (1 Pet 1:18,19; 1 Jn 1:7). Blood represents the life of an animal or human, death occurring when the blood is drained (Lev 17:11).

Because Jesus voluntarily paid such a high price in our place, we rightfully belong to God and should always be so grateful

He gave His life for mine. Do I live my life for Him?

and do all we can to make Him known while living lives that please Him (Rom 6:13, 12:1; 1 Cor 6:19,20; Gal 2:19,20). We have been recipients of His mercy and grace – not receiving what we deserve but instead what we don’t deserve.

See also: blood, Boaz, eternal damnation, eternal life, grace, justification, kinsman redeemer, mercy, redeem, Saviour, substitution.




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