Did you know that before you placed your trust in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ
for the forgiveness of your sins, and the gift of eternal life, you were a slave of sin? You were under
the power of the evil one, Satan, and you had no choice but to yield to his bidding. You were born a
slave of sin. But when you made the decision to trust in Jesus Christ alone for your salvation, you
were born again and became a child of God. You were redeemed by the blood of the crucified and
risen Jesus Christ. “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our
trespasses, according to the riches of His grace” (Ephesians 1:7).
The word, redeemed, is packed with meaning for us as believers. The Old Testament book
of Hosea records the tragic, yet gracious, story of a prophet who married a harlot named Gomer.
She was an unfaithful wife, who had children through her harlotry. Hosea and Gomer eventually
separated and she became a slave. Hosea saw her in the slave market and the Lord God commanded
Hosea to love her and purchase her back with the pledge that she would not return to her lovers. The
picture of this tragic marriage is the marriage of God and Israel. Israel was an unfaithful wife who
served idols instead of the God who had redeemed her when Moses led Israel out of Egypt.
One of the New Testament words for redemption, exagoradzo, means “to purchase out of
the slave market, never to return again”. The other word is loutromai, which means “a ransom”.
We were all slaves of sin and we were without any hope until God sent His Son to die in our place.
His blood paid the ransom. His blood purchased us out of the slave market of sin. Now that we are
redeemed, we have a choice to sin or not to sin. Paul addresses that in Romans 6:16, “Do you not
know that when you present yourselves to someone [as] slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the
one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness?”
Some believers take advantage of God’s grace and continue to obey their previous master, sin. Paul
reminds the Roman believers, and us, “having been freed from sin, you became slaves of
righteousness” (v. 18). Then he exhorts us with these words, “I am speaking in human terms
because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves to impurity
and to lawlessness, resulting in [further] lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to
righteousness, resulting in sanctification. For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard
to righteousness. Therefore what benefit were you then deriving from the things of which you are
now ashamed? For the outcome of those things is death. But now having been freed from sin and
enslaved to God, you derive your benefit, resulting in sanctification, and the outcome, eternal life.
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Let me ask you a question, “Does it make sense to you, that having been a slave of sin, then
redeemed, to go back to be a slave of sin?” It is like a dog going back to its vomit! Yet that is what
we do when we choose to put ourselves under the slavery of sin. It is the nature of swine to grovel
in mud. You can hose them down, but if you let them back in the ‘pigpen’ they will go right on
grovelling in the mud. It is their nature. Before we were born again, it was our nature to grovel in
sin. Now that we are redeemed, we are slaves of righteousness and we do not have to go back to
grovelling in sin.
As believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, we have the freedom to choose the object of our
obedience. We can be slaves of sin, which results in death, or we can be slaves of righteousness,
resulting in sanctification. We become more holy. We become more like Jesus.
This is a no brainer! Choose today, who your master will be. Will it be sin and Satan, or will
it be righteousness and the Lord Jesus Christ, the One who redeemed you? If you have been serving
sin, confess it right now. Receive His forgiveness. Thank Him that He redeemed you. Tell Him that
you choose to serve Him in the power of the Holy Spirit.
Bill Olsen, Elder