God Redeems Us

A special attribute of our God is holiness. So, what exactly can it contribute to us? It is redemption. When speaking of redemption, it is not only of the soul, but also relating to our physical presence on earth. To believe and understand God as the holy being is to have the confidence to hope for His good pleasure on us. Though He disciplines and tests us, He never forgets us. This is His specialty and it is because He is holy. We who belong to Him can always be certain that when we seek Him He comes to our aid. Whether it is sin or suffering, He removes it so that we get into a deeper relationship with Him. The pure fact that He is holy signifies He is without sin, defect or injustice and is with love, forgiveness and justice. The people of God always know Him as the Good One, because He is known to them as “Our Redeemer, the LORD of hosts is His name, The Holy One of Israel” (Isa. 47:4).

God redeems us. It cannot be put any simpler. He wants us to know that He can redeem us. When the prophet calls Him the Lord of hosts, he explains His capability to redeem His people. He portrays Him as the most powerful by a language of war. Israel’s existence as a nation always included war. Through their battles against nations God fought for them and sometimes in their stead. Every time He stood for them, they won. Israel knew the power of ‘the Lord of hosts.’ And when the prophet called Him our Redeemer, they knew they will be saved. They knew they will see brighter days; they understood God has remembered them in their pain and agony. They knew the enemy will capitulate. So, what does it mean to us who are called to establish our existence apart from war? It still means the same, i.e. God redeems us, because He is the same omnipotent God. Nothing is out of reach to Him. He is able to redeem us from all our troubles, anxieties and weaknesses; He provides. Even in the case of Israel, had it not been for Him in their midst, they would not have lasted as a nation but for a moment. It is only the law that changed by which we are redeemed, not the ‘the Lord of hosts.’ When He changed the law, He did it to avail a greater and better help to us. He desired to be the one who does everything for our joy and comfort. And, He came in the flesh. “This beginning of His signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory, and His disciples believed in Him” (John 2:11).

Now, our part is to believe in Him or entrust to Him under any situation. The God who came in the flesh is our Redeemer. We can begin our belief in Him by following Him or obeying His call and purpose. As we watch Him execute His works for us, our belief sharpens. This is what transpired in the disciples from the wedding in Cana. What God wants from us, under the law of liberty, is to just believe Him with His unlimited power for all the things He promised us. One thing that always fascinates me is how naïve many can be regarding the works Jesus did on earth. They limit them to His time on earth and thereby, wittingly take away the important factor that defines His continual existence with power. What this has done is that it did not allow them to look past the Jesus that lived on earth. In other words, they are unable to look to the Jesus that lives. They are totally missing the awesome intimacy God prepared for them in Him. One interesting point in the above verse is: Jesus began His works in Cana of Galilee. The Word never says He ended them. If He ended them, He ended manifesting Himself and men cannot believe in Him; we too cannot continue in Him, since our belief of Him as our Redeemer becomes obsolete. But, He lives on and God raised Him from the dead that He comes to the aid of those that entrust to Him. There is always seen in the Word the guarantee that He works for us. The last work He does for us is giving victory over death.

Christ manifests His glory, i.e. the majesty and power of God to us. He never stops it until all that God planned toward us is fulfilled. To say that He no longer manifests Himself is denying that He works for His people. Again, it is denying the belief that should appear in men. Then, a number of things will not happen through Him. Just as the disciples needed to believe in Him then, even so, it is needed for men to believe in Him now to be saved. Paul having understood this said “Is this blessing then on the circumcised, or on the uncircumcised also? For we say, ‘FAITH WAS CREDITED TO ABRAHAM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS’” (Rom. 4:9). God who manifested Himself to Israel intended to do the same and more mightily in the person of Christ. When our lawless deeds are forgiven and our sin has been removed in Christ, we are bound to be blessed by God. To be blessed by Him is to have Christ perform works for us. Consider Abraham. When his faith was credited to him as righteousness, i.e. his sin was removed by God he went on to live by the works of God. Therefore, he had a son and received him back from the dead. All he did was entrust himself to God, the same act God wants to see in us through Jesus. Then, it is certain the Redeemer manifests His glory to us.

Paul entrusted himself to God and knew what faith in Christ supplies. He knew it to be the protection that helps him complete his journey on earth. Numerous times he was redeemed by God from various troubles, needs and enemies. Those that wittingly set aside Christ’s willingness to perform works for His people have not seen the power of God for redemption; let alone being equipped by the Spirit to do His works. They are enemies of Him and the message concerning Him. They set aside the very message in the gospel. “And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:19). The very nature of our Redeemer is to care for us. He cannot restrain Himself from it, because He is holy. When we entrust ourselves to Him, we do not worry as to how He supplies us; for the one who worries cannot fully believe in Him. Whatever be our needs, physical or spiritual, He fulfills them through the people He chose. An example is the incessant joy, confidence and peace we receive by the message of the Word.

Usually it is men and women walking in the flesh that set aside the gospel’s message. For the sin in them inspires them for futile thoughts and compels them to make ways for executing them. God in Christ does not get involved with them. Yet, they move forward in their life through the deluding influence He sends upon them. They do not understand the reason for Christ to manifest His glory to believers. That reason is explained as God equates believers with Abraham: “for he was looking for the city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God” (Heb. 11:10). When our eventual home is heaven, everything necessary to finish our journey on earth has to come from Him. All that Abraham possessed in life by the blessings of God made him to look forward for a heavenly place. He was able to envisage the beauty of living in eternity with God. This kept him going in His will.

So, know that God redeems you when you turn to Him for help. That He does not reject you is illustrated by the following. “Another angel came and stood at the altar, holding a golden censer; and much incense was given to him, so that he might add it to the prayers of all the saints on the golden altar which was before the throne” (Rev. 8:3). He listens to your supplications. Not only does He listen to them, but He adds His emotions to them so that He takes charge to redeem you. In fact, He gives you confidence for it by emotionally strengthening you to hope in Him. It is His nature; for His very identity includes love, forgiveness and justice. At times it might take longer than your estimated time to obtain His help. Sometimes the state which you are in makes it difficult to hope in His promise to redeem you. Again, the conclusions of men from unpretentious reasoning can make you anxious of His willingness to redeem. But, wait on Him and you will have joy. He has certainly heard you; He will not forget. Do not ever think His faithfulness can be nullified. Corresponding to this, Paul in the Spirit said, “May it never be! Rather, let God be found true, though every man be found a liar, as it is written, ‘THAT YOU MAY BE JUSTIFIED IN YOUR WORDS, AND PREVAIL WHEN YOU ARE JUDGED’” (Rom. 3:4).

Posted in 2013, Archives.