By Jonathan Michael Dean
“He gave His life as a ransom for many” (Matt.20:28b).
Simon was brought onto the platform. As he gazed over the crowd men shoved each other to get the best spot for viewing. Simon couldn’t remember a time that he wasn’t a slave. He was being sold at auction once again. “This is the day”, he thought. “I wonder how much I’ll sell for?” And the bidding began.
The bidders battled back and forth! While two men refused to lose the bidding war, another man in the crowd calmly walked up to the auctioneer. He whispered in his ear. Simon saw him. “What is he saying?”
Suddenly the auctioneer stopped. “Sold!” Simon was surprised by the unexpectedness of the purchase. And he would have never expected what would happen next.
The slave handler approached Simon. He slowly took off Simon’s chains, one at a time. The man who had made the purchased stepped forward. Simon thought he was about to be taken away. But instead, the slave handler began putting the chains on the man. One chain at a time.
“What are you doing?” Simon said with shock. The auctioneer took Simon aside. “Simon,” he said, “that is your name, Right?”
“Yes,” Simon replied.
The auctioneer gave some thought to what he was about to say … “This man is the wealthiest man in town. He owns properly, cattle, and servants. He has offered to purchase your freedom in exchange for His own. He has given His life for yours. All of His property is now granted to you. You are free to go!”
Redemption was a word used on the ancient slave market. It means to buy back, or ransom. Romans 3:24 says, “And we are justified by his grace as a gift, through the REDEMPTION that is in Christ Jesus.”
We were enslaved to sin and death. Our fleshly passions offended God. Greed, pride, hate, selfishness, lust, envy and other crooked desires held us captive. Instead of finding satisfaction in Christ, we satisfied our sinful desires. But the things we thought would bring freedom brought bondage. We had to sin. We wanted to sin. And there was no way out.
Jesus gave up everything for you. He isn’t crossing His fingers in heaven hoping you will be saved. He did not die for the possibility to maybe some; He died for the certainty to save many (Matt.20:28, Heb.9:28). He knew those for whom He died. They were given to Him by the Father. He purchased them with His blood. Your name was on His mind when He died on the cross. According to His own eternal purpose, He awakened you to the cross and applied His atonement to your life. His death paid Sin’s ransom and Your debt. He set you free from the penalty and power of Sin!
“We have Redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses” (Eph.1:7).