Sermon: ‘Redemption Through His Blood’
Sunday, March 19, 2017
Almost every one of us wants something to get better. Some of us want the economy to get better and others want to get a better job. Some of us want our grades to get better and others our children’s grades to get better. Some of us want our health, or the health of a loved one, to get better and others want certain relationships to get better. Some of us want ourselves to get better. We’re not happy with who we are and we want to get better. Can things get better and if so, how?
For some of us, things like our grades could get better if we would buckle down and study a little harder. But there are other things that are beyond our power or ability to make better. In such situations we have to pray and depend upon God to help us. So again my question is – “Can things get better and if so, how?”
This morning we’re going to look at how God is going to make things better and it revolves around one word; the word ‘redemption.’ What does the word ‘redemption’ mean? A very simple definition of redemption would be to take something that is in a bad situation and put it in a better situation. In order for us to fully understand God’s process of making things better, we have to look at four Greek words found in four different Bible passages. Each of these words give a little different angle to God’s process of Redemption.
I. Agorazo –
First of all let me say that things are eventually going to get better. “When?” some of you might ask. At the end of time.
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; 10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests and we shall reign on the earth.
The first Greek word we’re going to look at is the word ‘agorazo’ and it’s translated as ‘redeemed’ here in this verse.
Revelation 5:9 … for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood…
As many of you know, the book of Revelation has to do with End Time events. This event we have just read about will occur just before the beginning of that terrible seven-year time period known as the Tribulation. To understand the purpose for the Tribulation Period, look at chapter 11.
Revelation 11:15 And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever. 16 And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God, 17 Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned.
To put it in a nutshell, during the Tribulation Period and a time known as the Day of the Lord, Jesus is going to redeem back to His Father the creation that has been under the curse of sin and Satan’s power since the fall of man way back in Genesis chapter 3. When Jesus returns, things are going to get better.
But there’s another redemption that I want to call your attention to this morning.
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…
The word used here for redemption is our first Greek word – ‘agorazo.’ During ancient times, the agora was the marketplace where men and women bought and sold their goods. It was the Walmart of their day. You could buy almost anything in the agora, even human beings. At the back of the agora was a terrible place where men and women were often sold as slaves. Agorazo means to purchase something in the agora. Revelation 5:9 says that Jesus entered into the agora and by His own blood, He purchased our salvation.
This brings us to our second word: ‘exagorazo.’
Perhaps you will notice that the word ‘exagorazo’ is the word ‘agorazo’ with the prefix ‘ex’ added to the front of it. The Greek prefix ‘ex’ means out of. That’s not hard to understand. The word ‘exit’ means to go out.
There’s an amazing story in the Old Testament about a prophet named Hosea. God told Hosea to marry a prostitute. Why in the world would God tell a righteous man to marry a harlot? God told Hosea, “This will illustrate how Israel has acted like a prostitute by turning against the LORD and worshiping other gods.” (see Hosea 1:2) Hosea was to marry a prostitute to illustrate Israel’s spiritual prostitution against God. There was also a second reason why Hosea was to marry this prostitute. It was to illustrate God’s willingness to forgive.
Hosea married the woman and together they started a family. But just as things were going good, Gomer did a terrible thing. She left her husband Hosea and started living with another man. She went back into her prostitution. Eventually that man got tired of her and sold her as a sex-slave. Time went on and Gomer went from one man to the next until finally one day God told Hosea to go back to the agora and to purchase Gomer out of her sex slavery. “Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another man and is an adulteress. Love her as the LORD loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods…” (Hosea 3:1)
Would you do that? Would you go and purchase your unfaithful mate out of their sexual slavery? Many imagine that by this time in the story, all the life and vitality has been drained out of Gomer. The hard life she had been living was written in the wrinkles of her face. Perhaps as she stood there on the auction block, no one made a bid. No one wanted this tired old woman. But then a voice was heard from the back of the crowd. It was the voice of Hosea as he called out his bid to redeem his wife.
Spiritually speaking, Jesus came and went to the very back of the agora, the place where slaves were being sold and He purchased us so that He could deliver us out of our spiritual slavery.
Galatians 3:10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.
The Bible tells us that we are under a curse; the curse of the law. What does that mean? The law refers to God’s perfect moral standard given through Moses. It’s the Ten Commandments and a whole lot of other stuff. The law demands perfection and it condemns imperfection. “Cursed is every one that doesn’t do everything contained within the law” the Bible says. Have you done everything in the law? Have you obeyed it completely? Have you fulfilled the Ten Commandments? The Bible says that we all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. (see Romans 3:23) We’ve all broken God’s perfect law and therefore we all under the sentence of death.
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:
Christ hath ‘redeemed us’ (ex-agorazo) from the curse of the law. Like Hosea that purchased Gomer out of her sin, so the Lord has come to purchase us out of our sin. He has come to redeem us. Notice how the Lord has done this.
“…being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree…”
What is ‘lutroo?’ It’s the ransom price paid to purchase a slave. This is the word Jesus used when He said, “For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:45) Jesus gave His own life as the ransom price (lutroo) in order to purchase us out of the slave market of sin.
Peter writes –
1 Peter 1:18 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed (lutroo) 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:
As amazing as the story of Hosea’s redemption of Gomer is, the story of Christ’s redemption of us is even more amazing. Not only would Jesus be willing to come to the slave market of sin and purchase us, He was willing to pay the highest price anyone has ever paid for anything. Nothing in all the world has ever cost more than it cost Jesus to redeem us. It cost Him His precious blood. It cost Him His life. Earlier we read from Revelation 5 – “…for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood…” The word ‘slain’ means to be butchered. It refers to death through some sort of violence. The spotless Lamb of God was violently put to death so that He might redeem us back to God.
Why would Jesus do this? We come now to our last word.
Like the word ‘ex-agorazo’, the word ‘apo-lutrosis’ is a word with a prefix added to it. Apolutrosis is lutroo (the price paid to ransom a slave) with the prefix ‘apo’ added to the front of it. What does ‘apo’ mean? It means to ransom in order to set free. Look with me at Colossians chapter 1.
Colossians 1:13 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 (apolutrosis) through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:
Jesus gave His life in order to set us free from the penalty of our sin. That’s what the word forgiveness means. It means to be released from bondage or imprisonment. Hosea did not purchase Gomer in order to condemn her. He purchased her in order to love her. What an act of forgiveness that was.
Jesus also gave His life in order to deliver us from the power of darkness and to translate us into His own kingdom. Hosea did not purchase Gomer in order for her to go back into prostitution. He purchased her to come home and be his wife. Jesus gave His own life in order to release us from slavery to sin and to live for Him.
Here are some facts found in the Bible we all must face.
1) We All Have Sinned
The Bible says that we all have sinned and fallen short of God’s intended glory. (see Romans 3:23) That’s a truth many people don’t want to face, but it’s a true we must accept and admit if we’re going to be redeemed. We’ve all been on that slave block sold into sin.
2) Every Sin Must Be Judged and Punished
Every sin that is committed must be judged and punished. The question that each of us must answer is – ‘Who is going to bear my punishment?’ According to Revelation 20, the day is coming when mankind will stand before God and be judged for every sin they have ever committed. For the most of mankind, they themselves will bear their own punishment.
But there is another way. Jesus came to bear our punishment for us.
Peter writes – “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree…By his wounds you have been healed.” (1 Peter 2:24 ESV)
4) To Receive God’s Forgiveness of Sin, We Must Receive Jesus as Our Savior
The Bible says – “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Romans 10:9-10)
The Bible says that we must believe in our heart that Jesus is God’s sacrifice for our sins, and we must confess Him as our Savior.
Have you done that? If not, would you like to do so today? If I can be of help to you, please contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org