2021 Christmas Advent Day 15: The Redeemer visits His people
- Main Passage: Matthew 1:21
- And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call His name JESUS: for He shall save His people from their sins.
- God has chosen to name His Son Jesus, which means “Salvation.” For Jesus, the angel said, “shall save His people from their sins.” In Psalms it is written, “Let Israel hope in The LORD: for with The LORD there is mercy, and with Him is plenteous redemption. And He shall redeem Israel from all His iniquities.” [Psalms 130:7-8] To redeem means to purchase or buy back, even as one in Israel could redeem themselves out of slavery, or redeem a plot of family land that had been previously sold. In the same way, Jesus has redeemed us from the slavery of sin. Jesus makes this clear in John,
- “Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on Him, if ye continue in My word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. They answered him, we be Abraham’s seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, ye shall be made free? Jesus answered them, verily, verily, I say unto you, whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the son abideth for ever. If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” [John 8:31-36]
- Jesus tells a short parable to explain His point: “The servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the son abideth for ever.” The servant of a house at some point, unless a bond servant, will be freed or redeemed. There were limitations in Israel on servants/slaves, so that Israelites could not keep their brethren in any type of bondage. So the servant doesn’t abide in the house forever, but a son does. The son of the Father abides forever and will inherit the house. And so if The Son (Jesus) makes you free (redeems you) you will truly be free. Consider the law in Leviticus,
- “And if a sojourner or stranger wax rich by thee, and thy brother that dwelleth by him wax poor, and sell himself unto the stranger or sojourner by thee, or to the stock of the stranger’s family: after that he is sold he may be redeemed again; one of his brethren may redeem him…” [Leviticus 25:47-48]
- Those Israelites who sold themselves to slavery were able to be redeemed by near kinsmen. This is a picture of what Jesus has done. We have sold ourselves to sin, to work lawlessness; but Jesus, God’s Son, was “made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons…Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.” [Galatians 4:4-5; 7] And Jesus is qualified to redeem us, Him being a Son, The Son of God, and also our brother; “forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same; that through death He might destroy him that has the power of death, that is, the devil; and deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” [Hebrews 2:14-15]
- Jesus has purchased us out of slavery, even as Hosea purchased Gomer, who had sold herself. “Then said The LORD unto me, go yet, love a woman beloved of her friend, yet an adulteress, according to the love of The LORD toward the children of Israel, who look to other gods, and love flagons of wine. So I bought her to me for fifteen pieces of silver, and for an homer of barley, and half homer of barley.” [Hosea 3:1-2] Or even as Boaz who redeemed Ruth from a life of barrenness and poverty, and said, “moreover Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, have I purchased to be my wife…” [Ruth 4:10]
- Jesus is our redeemer. He purchases us out of the hands of satan, out from underneath his authority, out of the world, out of bondage to sin. He did this for us through His death and resurrection. By this, and our belief in it, “our old man has been crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be annulled, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin.” [Romans 6:6-7]
- Once slaves to sin, we are now free: we are redeemed by Jesus, and are brought under the household of Israel, God being our very own Father. We are given grace by Jesus and therein victory over sin, “for sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law but under grace.” [Romans 6:14] And as a result, we are inhabited by God’s Spirit, by Jesus Himself, the very promised Seed. And He in us lives out the righteousness of God as we submit to Him. “He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil. Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for His Seed remaineth in Him, and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.” [1 John 3:8-9]
- Through Jesus we are free to live lives which exhibit that glorious victory of Jesus; that righteousness of God which was perfectly displayed in Him is available to us, for He lives in us. He living through us, gives us daily, by His grace, which we receive in submission and humility, the power to remain pure, to remain focused on Him, to love Him, to speak kindly, to think kindly, to have peace, joy, longsuffering, meekness, gentleness, etc. It is through Jesus, and it is because He has redeemed us. Praise be to God.
Questions for Day 15
- Because of Jesus, we no longer must obey the lusts of our bodies; we are gloriously freed through His atoning sacrifice. He has redeemed us out of slavery, just as Israel was freed from Egypt by the death of the firstborn. We are given the opportunity to live lives above this earth, even as the eagle flies above it. We are free to rejoice, free to have peace: we no longer must obey the complaints and lusts of our bodies, or give way to the vanity of this world, being discouraged. We are freed from condemnation, from anxiety, from worldly sorrow, from every ill which all who do not know Jesus are hopelessly bound, and which no man-made program, ritual, or religious tradition can ever save from. Do you experience the victory that Jesus offers? What needs to change so that we might? How can one experience the very life of Jesus flowing out from them as a fountain of waters?
- Reflect: 2 Corinthians says “for we which live are always delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.” [2 Corinthians 4:11] And again, Paul says that Jesus died for all “that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto Him which died for them, and rose again.” [2 Corinthians 5:15] See here that there are two things which define those “which live.” Those who are alive, who have the vibrant and joyful life Jesus promised when He said “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly,” [John 10:10] is defined for us here. The life Jesus spoke of was not to have a nice family and a good job; it was not to have all provision, no need, and to be moderately happy. Jesus spoke of real life – the life of dying to self, to putting to death your own desires and dreams and passions, and letting Christ live through you. To this Paul was well acquainted, and proclaimed in Galatians “Christ liveth in me.” [Galatians 2:20] Can you say that? If not, then remember, those which live are those who die, and those who live for Jesus, who as it were “hateth [their] life in this world.” [John 12:25]
- “Therefore brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die; but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.” [Romans 8:12-23]