Thursday, December 8, 2016

Ransomed, Redeemed , Restored

UV 2143/10000 Ransomed, Redeemed, Restored
For the LORD hath redeemed Jacob, and ransomed him from the hand of him that was stronger than he.
Jeremiah 31 v 11

Every human being needs a protector, a redeemer , a Saviour for sin, death, curses and the enemy of our souls who rules by these instruments is far more strong than any of us. The enemy is not only strong. He is also subtle and has a vast arsenal of weapons to use against us including our own inherent weaknesses and proclivities. Jacob the young lad fell a prey to the machinations of the enemy through the persuasion of his mother, Rachel. He indulged in deceit. He cheated his brother Esau of his inheritance as the first born. He then became fearful and fled his own house to escape the anger and vengeance of his brother. Jacob the free man who lived in his father’s house had become a captive to his own desire and evil intention. A person in captivity lives in fear. His freedom is restricted. He is not fed or clothed well. He is not able to do all that he wants to do. A man can flee from all things but he cannot flee from his own conscience- the record of his own wrongs. The Lord remembered His covenant promise to Abraham, Jacob’s grandfather and decided to meet him. Jacob encountered the Lord in the wilderness, first in a dream and then in his wrestling match with an angel of the Lord. Jacob entered into a covenant relationship with the Almighty at this point and acknowledged his dependence on His mercy. He sought to be blessed of God. His life changed at this point. The “ Peniel” point of his life’s struggles merged into “Bethel”- his being ransomed from the enemy of his soul and being inducted as a member of God’s household.

Jacob’s struggles did not end there but no longer did he have to struggle alone. He had the Saviour as Immanuel and Ebenezer- immanent God and helping, saving, redeeming God. Indeed, weakness is a part of our human nature but the power to overcome comes from the Lord. His love and grace is stronger than sin, death and every disease and curse. He redeems us by paying the cost or ransom- His own Son Jesus, the Anointed One to be sacrificed and to be resurrected to be King of Kings who rules over every redeemed sinner and turns them into winners. He pays the ransom to redeem us from evil and the evil one as He cannot compromise on His own standards of absolute holiness. Sin has to be paid its wages in terms of death. Eternal life is given as a free gift to everyone who believes like Jacob in the covenant promise of the Lord.

Jesus saved Jacob from all his predicaments, including the practical and earthly situations. He redeemed him from exploitation by his equally cunning father in law , Laban. He chose him as the founder of the nation of Israel. He prospered him in his flocks and multiplied his family and his descendants. He saved his family from death by starvation by raising ahead of time his own long lost son Joseph, ruler in Egypt. Therefore, salvation in Christ has many dimensions- eternal and earthly implications, physical, emotional, familial, filial, financial, social, cultural, economic, intellectual and political. The primary benefit to an abducted person on being ransomed is the restoration to his original freedom. We like Jacob are restored to our pristine, pre-fall nature when we could live in the lap of nature, enjoy the bounties of the earth as well as walk and talk with Almighty God, no longer just our Creator but our beloved Redeemer and Saviour. We should take care not to be deceived again, to return to captivity and bondage but to live in freedom and in union with God through Jesus.

Prateep V Philip

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