Freedom And Triumph
Redeemed means to be set free upon the payment of a ransom and the ransom in this case was the precious shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ upon the cross of Calvary.
Alright, thank you very much. And hello again my dear radio friend. How in the world are you? Yes, that little greeting establishes the fact that this is indeed, your good friend, Bob Cook, and you and I are back together again to look at the Word of God and just to chat awhile as good friends may. You know, there’s some people with whom you absolutely feel comfortable. Isn’t that true? The folk, you like them, but you’re a little wary. You have to watch your step. And still others it is true, probably as Jim Mercer said to me one time as I was admonishing him. I said, “Jim you shouldn’t hate him.” He said, “I don’t hate him, I just can’t stand him.” (Laughs) Well, all kinds of people to make the world go round, but you and I are together just now by way of radio. I’m so grateful that God has provided this ministry during these years. It’s precious to me and I know it is to many of you.
I ran across a little string of verses that would remind some of us who are still able to get around that we ought sometimes to make a call on folks who can’t. May I read it for you? It’s called “Solitary Soul”. “She sits there waiting patiently and wipes away a tear, wishing that a visitor would suddenly appear. Someone to say “How are you?” and greet her with a smile, someone to sit beside her and just chat a little while. It’s hard for her to understand that what she’s doing there and what happened to her family, and friends who used to care. How come she’s been abandoned like some old worn out shoe? What crime has she committed, what bad thing did she do? True, she has a bed to sleep in and she sheltered from the rain, but there are precious little else around to ease her loneliness and pain, and she’s only one of many in an oldster home today, who find the price for a longer life is much too high to pay.”
You know that picture could be quickly changed if all of us would spend some extra time just visiting a relative or friend who shut away from all the things that once were held so dear and needs to be reminded that at least someone is near to take her by the hand and say, “How are you?” with a smile and then sit close beside her and just love her for awhile. It reminds you, doesn’t it? Yeah.
My good friend, Lloyd Cory, son of Vic Cory, for whom I’ve worked for five years in Scripture Press, Lloyd was in the editorial department, he’s now retired. He lives down in the Ozarks, somewhere but he’s still a phrase master, he’s still good with a phrase and he knows that I’m interested in quotations. So in a little note that he wrote me awhile back, he included some quotations. (Laughs) I may use some of them now and again, He said, “a computer will never replace human beings in the office until it can learn to grovel.” (Laughs) That’s something, isn’t it?
“God often digs his wells of joy with a spade of sorrow.”
F.B. Meyer said, “To tamper with conscience is like killing the watchdog while the burglar is breaking in.”
Well, a compliment, do you know what that is? Verbal sunshine.
Here’s another one. He says “Some people are born on third base and go through life thinking they hit a triple.” (Laughs)
It’s like what I saw the other day. “She looked like someone who goes through life demanding to see the manager.” Well, there are folks like that, I guess.
If you’ve got a halo? Do you have a halo today? “A halo doesn’t have to fall but a few inches to become a noose.”
Here’s the last one I’ll read today. “It’s better to lend somebody a hand than a tool. You get the hand back.” (Laughs) That’s how it is.
You and I are into Ephesians chapter 1 and we’re told that our blessed God has chosen us in Christ and predestinated, I mean, He made plans for us. His plans involve being adopted into his family, being made possible for us to shine so that His glory and grace is praised, accepted in the beloved one in the Lord Jesus.
In him, verse 7, we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins according to the riches of his grace. We have redemption. The word redemption, apolutrosis, says which comes from two words, “apo”, off, from, and “luo”, a verb meaning to loose, or let go. And this word is always used. I’m told by my good friend Thayer’s lexicon, always used in terms of letting a person go after paying a ransom, liberated upon the payment of a ransom. Redemption through his blood. What was the price? The precious blood of Christ.
Peter said in his first letter, “For as much as you know you were not redeemed with corruptible things as silver and gold and your vain lifestyle received by tradition from your father’s.” Remember that passage? “But with the precious blood of Christ as of the lamb without blemish and without spot. “He verily was forordained before the foundation of the world,” same truth. “But was manifest in these last times for you who by him do believe in God…”
“Redeemed, how I love to proclaim it, redeemed by the blood of the lamb. Redeemed and so happy in Jesus, His child and forever I am.” It’s what the songwriter says and it’s true. Redeemed means to be set free upon the payment of a ransom, and the ransom in this case was the precious shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ upon the cross of Calvary.
Now, what’s involved in that redemption? First, the forgiveness of sins, forgiveness of sins. “There is forgiveness with thee,” said the Psalmist, “that thou mayest be feared,” “There is forgiveness with thee that thou mayest be feared.”
The lack of forgiveness leads to personal and interpersonal disaster. The Psalmist talks about this in Psalm 32, “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man onto whom the Lord imputeth not iniquity and in whose spirit there is no guile.”
Forgiveness involves three things. What is it? Whose sin is covered: that’s paying the price, the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, “He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities. The chastisement of our peace was upon Him and by His stripes we are healed,” Isaiah chapter 53 says that. The price is paid whose sin is covered.
Second: Unto whom the Lord imputeth not iniquity. This is the action of God in justifying you, making things right. He expunges the record of your sin and instead, according to the book of Romans, reckons to you His righteousness. “Unto him that worketh not but believeth on Him that justifieth, the ungodly his faith is counted onto him for righteousness”, Paul says in Romans.
And then there’s the personal working of God’s grace in the heart of the forgiven one in whose spirit there is not guile. God makes you finally right with him. You don’t have anything any longer to cover up; you don’t have anything to put on a front for. You don’t have to try to fool God or people because you’re out in the open with it all and God is forgiven you. In his spirit there is no guile.
Now, see, the person, the Psalmist says, who refuses to go this route, he said “When I kept silent…” He said, “I’m not going to tell anybody. I’m just going to keep quiet about this.” “When I kept silent even my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long.” Physically upset, what was this, arthritis or rheumatism. I don’t know. But he said, I really was in bad shape and it was a direct result of my refusal to come out and confess my sins to God. “Day and night Thy hand was heavy upon me,” things didn’t go right. “My moisture is turned into the drought of summer,” he had a dry time of it.
A small thought here. Are you experiencing kind of a drought in your own spiritual life? Look for something that needs to be cleared up between you and God. It has never failed. Now I can’t say that this is always true because I don’t have all the knowledge that God has. You and I are finite, so I’m not going to make a generalization here. But I can tell you about my own life. It has never failed in my own life that when I came upon a dry period, where things were dry and I didn’t have any spiritual life and the dew of heaven didn’t seem to be falling upon me and I was discontented and upset and weary of it all, a dry spiritual time, you know what I’m talking about don’t you? Because you’ve had it.
There has never been a time like that but then that, when I began to look for whatever was in the way between me and God and found it and put it under the blood of Christ by faith, the showers of blessings returned. Alright? “My moisture,” said he, “has turned into the drought of summer”; I’m having a dry time of it. Why? Because I’ve refused to confess my sins. So, Alright he, changed his mind now. He said, “I acknowledged my sin onto thee and my iniquity have I not hid. I said I will confess my transgressions onto the Lord and thou forgave us the iniquity of my sin. For this the joy of forgiveness shall everyone that is godly pray unto thee in a time when thou mayest be found.”
Forgiveness, what’s involved? The price paid for sin, the justification that God gives you – when he imputes not iniquity but righteousness unto you and the rightness of your spirit between you and God in whose spirit has no guile.
Yes, you may be having a dry time of it. Look, beloved friend, for something that God wants to operate on in your own heart and when He does you’ll find the showers of blessing coming. Yes, you will.
Redemption through His blood even the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace where hath He has abounded toward us all wisdom and prudence. I mentioned this the last time we got together. God’s dealings with your always on the basis of your grace not merit. You don’t give what you deserve. If you got what you deserved you and I would already be in hell. But he says wisdom, riches of His grace, he abounded in His grace, abounded toward us in wisdom and prudence. Wisdom is the original plan of God for you. Prudence is the efficient working out of that plan day after day.
And just at the risk of being repetative, let me remind you, beloved, that what is happening in your life, you may not enjoy it, you may not like it, you may even complain about it bitterly, because I’ve done so on occasion, I know. But God is working in your life. “It is God that worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure.” And if God planned for you before the foundation of the world, then what is happening in your life today, is part of His plan and you can trust Him to see you through it, not somehow, but triumphantly.
“Thanks be unto God which always causeth us to triumph Christ”, said Paul. You can be a winner today and every day by the grace of God.
Father God, have your way with us today and guide us in your grace according to your plan in Jesus name. Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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