The Ransom Has Been Paid


Acts 2:14a,36-41

1 Peter 1:17-23

Luke 24:13-35

Psalm 116:1-3, 10-17


In our times, we tend to think of a ransom as a payment to kidnappers, but in ancient times it was mostly a payment for a crime—a fine. As an example: Numbers 35:31; Do not accept a ransom for the life of a murderer, who deserves to dieNIV For the crime of theft, it was possible to pay a ransom as a substitute for serving time in prison. Every crime had a specific amount that had to be paid to avoid the unpleasant cell time. The ransom is not to be confused with bail. There was no bail.

The point is, Jesus did not bail us out. Instead, he paid for our time in prison; he did our time in our place. Picture a packed courtroom. The judges directs you to stand and announces your sentence for multiple murders. The sentence is death. Then, there is a commotion in the courtroom. A complete stranger steps forward and tells the judge that he will gladly stand in your place to be executed so that you can live. That is what Jesus did.

We do not know what happened to Jesus between his death and resurrection. The only hint we have is his prayer time in the garden when he asked God to let him out of the deal (Luke 22). Spending a few hours of torture before dying would be easy compared to the result—the salvation of the world. Jesus knew it was going to happen, and I believe he was happy to let it happen because it was something so simple. What he was not so sure of was going to Hell to do battle with the Father of Lies and the Angel of Death.

In our timeline, Jesus was only in the grave for part of three days, but he may well have moved out of time and engaged in a long war before returning to our time-based dominion. That is speculation, but if you consider that Revelation may have described at least part of what happened in those three days, it is possible.

Anyway, now, just two weeks after Easter, we need a reminder of the willingness of Jesus to stand in for us before the Judge. But, also note that God is both Judge and Father. So, as Paul wrote, You call out to God for help and he helps—he’s a good Father that way. But don’t forget, he’s also a responsible Father, and won’t let you get by with sloppy living. Your life is a journey you must travel with a deep consciousness of GodPhillips

Having my sins forgiven is not an excuse to sin. I am a son of God, baptized into the Son of God. I must strive to become aware of my sins and strive to stop doing them. Again, Paul, It’s because of this sacrificed Messiah, whom God then raised from the dead and glorified, that you trust God, that you know you have a future in GodMSG


Be righteous and do good.

Mike Lawrence

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