What Is Redemption. Adult Sunday School Manual.

What Is Redemption. Adult Sunday School Manual.

 

 

WHAT IS REDEMPTION?

 

 

Memory Verse 1 Peter 1:18-19

 

Ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold. But with the precious blood of Christ(KJV).

 

Central Truth

 

Redemption from sin is the salvation theme of the Bible.

 

Learning Objectives

 

At the end of this lesson, students will be able to:

1. Understand the biblical background for doctrine of redemption.

2. Appreciate the fact that a price was paid to redeem humanity from slavery of sin.

3. Understand that redemption sets people of God apart as His own.

 

The Lesson Outline

 

1. Redemption from Bondage

A. Redemption Price for Slavery

Leviticus 25:47-49

B. Redemption Price for Sin

1 Peter 1:17-19

 

2. Redemption of the Firstborn

A. Firstborn Belong to God

Exodus 13:1, 2, 14, 15

B. Christians Belong to God

1 Corinthians 6:19, 20

 

3. Redemption of God’s People

A. God Will Redeem

*Exodus 6:5-8*

B. Set Apart for God

*Deuteronomy 7:6-9 1 Peter 2:9, 10

 

Introducing the Lesson

 

Slavery was practised during the time periods covered in the Bible. Some people were enslaved because of wars. Others were forced into slavery because they could not pay their debts. Some Old Testament laws kept slavery from completely dehumanising its victims. In some circumstances, slaves could be redeemed, that is, a price could be paid to free them.

 

Many passages in the New Testament speak of or to slave. Slavery is neither condemned nor condoned in the New Testament but dealt with as a reality of life. Serving God faithfully whether one was a slave or a free man is what the New Testament focuses on.

 

The New Testament declares that all people are slaves to sin. But it also shows how God made a way for us, as slaves of sin, to be redeemed. This lesson will help us come n understand the biblical background for the doctrine of redemption.

 

The Holy Scriptures

 

*Leviticus 25:47.* “`And if a sojourner or stranger wax rich by thee, and thy brother that dwelleth by him wax poor, and sell himself unto the stranger or sojourner by thee, or to the stock of the stranger’s family:

 

48. After that he is sold he may be redeemed again; one of his brethren may redeem him:

 

1 Peter 1:18. Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;

19. But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:

 

Exodus 13:15. And it came to pass, when Pharaoh would hardly let us go, that the LORD slew all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the firstborn of man, and the firstborn of beast: therefore I sacrifice to the LORD all that openeti the matrix, being males; but all the firstborn of my children I redeem.

 

1 Corinthians 6:19. What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

20. For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

 

Deuteronomy 7:7. The LORD did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people:

 

8. But because the LORD loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers, hath the LORD brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.“`

 

Commentary and Application

 

1. Redemption from Bondage

A. Redemption Price for Slavery

Leviticus 25:47-49

The Book of Leviticus was written as instruction for the priests to guide the people of Israel in holiness. This included principles that affected everyday life, guiding the behaviour of both rich and poor people in the land. The practice of slavery could easily reduce a person’s standing in society. Some people could have been tempted to look at slaves solely as property, leaving them open to being mistreated.

 

The people of Israel had come out of brutal slavery in Egypt. So God established laws to protect the rights of the slaves. He did not want the Israelites to inflict what they had endured in Egypt on those who were less fortunate.

 

In ancient Israel, a poor person could sell himself to pay for a debt. Leviticus 25:47-53 provides an example of and instructions about this practice. If a non-Jewish settler had become rich and bought a Jewish slave, the law stated that the slave could be redeemed his freedom – could be purchased for a set price. The redemption price could either bo paid by the man himself or by one of his relatives, a kinsman-redeemer. No human was to be considered mere property, but always retained certain rights.

 

The background for this practice is found in Israel’s redemption from bondage in Egypt. God had freed His people. He did not want them to be slaves again. However, knowing the reality of the world in which His people lived. He provided ways to be redeemed for those who had to turn to slavery because of their poverty.

 

Question for Application

 

How might we be able to apply the instruction found in Leviticus 25:47-49?

 

Perhaps the best way to apply these verses today is to gain an understanding of the nature of God. God does not desire people to be in bondage to sin. He cares about people who are in sin’s bondage so much that He provided the way for them to be redeemed through the blood of Christ. We can also deduce that God cares about those who have sold themselves again to be slaves to sin and desires for them to be set free once again (see James 5:19, 20).

 

B. Redemption Price for Sin

1 Peter 1:17-19

The world in New Testament times did provide a similar redemption from slavery as God had done for ancient Israel. There was a price to pay so one could buy his or her freedom. However, redemption began to mean much more to the Early Church. It came to mean the spiritual freedom a sinner finds through the power of Christ’s blood to cleans sin. The apostle Peter used slavery as an example when writing to believers in Northern Asia Minor (that is, modern Turkey).

 

In 1 Peter 1:17, Peter challenged Christians to live lives of holiness in an unholy world (see verse 16). He gave two reasons for this. First, as God’s children they were to have reverent fear of God because He is the impartial Judge. This knowledge would affect their lifestyles.

 

Secondly, they were to live in holiness and reverent fear because of how God had redeemed them (verses 18, 19). It was not merely gold or silver that paid the price for their freedom. These seem valuable, but they will perish. The believer’s redemption and freedom from sin came through the blood of Christ, the perfect sacrifice, This also would affect the way these Christians (and Christians today) lived.

 

When we consider the price that was paid so we might have redemption, it is at times over- whelming. God is so good and truly does not desire that anyone die in slavery to sin. So Jesus Christ, God’s Son, was sent to pay the price to redeem us from slavery to sin with His blood.

 

It would have seemed enough to a slave to have a relative pay a sum of money to grant his freedom. This freedom would have been like receiving a new life. What would any of us give to receive a new life, to be free from sin and bondage to old habits? Yet no amount of money can buy that freedom. It is offered through Christ alone. Only His blood can grant us the freedom from sin that we need.

 

2. Redemption of the Firstborn

A. Firstborn Belong to God

Exodus 13:1, 2, 14, 15

The death of Pharaoh’s firstborn was the final blow to his stubborn heart. Calling Moses and Aaron into his presence, he sent them away telling them to take their people and go and worship their God. It was this event and its significance that led the people of Israel to dedicate each of their firstborn to the Lord.

 

God spoke to Moses and gave him instructions for the Israelites regarding the firstborn (Exodus 13:1, 2). They were to sanctify or set apart their firstborn males as sacred to the Lord, both humans and animals. Fathers were to pay a redemption price to free firstborn sons. (Numbers 3:47 set the price at 5 shekels).

 

The sanctifying of the firstborn was tied to the Feast of Unleavened Bread. It was during this celebration that the reason for sanctifying the firstborn was explained to the children.

 

Question for Application

 

How did the Israelites use questions to teach their children?

 

Questions were often a means of instruction in Bible times. Questions would be posed during sacred events at various times of the year, and the answers would reinforce the learning process. When the question arose concerning this practice of setting aside the firstborn, a father was to respond by recounting God’s mighty deliverance of the Israelites from Egyptian bondage (Exodus 13:14). They were to remember that Pharaoh had refused to release them, and the Lord had killed the firstborn of the Egyptians. This had helped secure the freedom of the Israelites. So they dedicated their firstborn and redeemed them to remember God’s gracious actions on behalf of the Israelites (verse 15).

 

The firstborn son of each Israelite was to be redeemed. In this way God’s deliverance was remembered with each firstborn son. For us, God’s one and only Son became our redemption, freeing us from sin. Every time a person believes and is freed from sin, we are reminded of the price that was paid for our freedom.

 

B. Christians Belong to God

1 Corinthians 6:19, 20

 

Questions for Application

 

What comes to mind when you think of a temple?

 

Temples are thought of as being places that are sacred and revered. Often, only select people can enter temples, such as priests or special initiates. Sometimes secret rituals are practised within their walls, sacred words and acts kept private from all but a select few. These practices suggest. that the purpose of a temple is not common use but for holy service.

 

In Paul’s time, pagan temples could be found in almost all major cities. In Corinth, temples existed for many Greek gods, including Apollo and Aphrodite. But the place the one true God dwells is not in buildings, but in His people whom He has redeemed. Paul wrote to the Christians in Corinth to consider their bodies as sacred temples because the Holy Spirit dwelt in them (1 Corinthians 6:19). Those who “are bought with a price” are to glorify and honour God by living as people who are set apart as His. They are God’s! He bought them with the blood of Christ.

 

This is like the firstborn males of Israel being set apart. The Israelites had been delivered from the bondage of Egypt. Christians have been delivered from the bondage of sin. They are called to glorify and honour God with their bodies in order to live lives that reflect a sense of thankfulness and praise to Him for His redemption. As a temple is kept sacred, so Christians are to live lives. not polluted by the world. They are not meant for common use, but for God’s holy purposes.

 

Question for Application

 

How can Christians honour God in their daily living?

 

Some people view holiness as religious arrogance, but holiness should be expressed in humility and a spirit yielded to God. What should stand out most about a Christian walking in holiness is godly character and spiritual fruit that matures with time. Simply doing good deeds is not enough. Holiness will be evidenced by love displayed through words, actions and attitudes.

 

3. Redemption of God’s People

A. God Will Redeem

Exodus 6:5-8

 

Questions for Application

 

_What might it be like to be freed from the oppression of slavery after your family had been enslaved for 400 years?_

 

None of the Israelites alive at the time of Moses knew the taste of freedom. They had been born, lived and died as slaves for some 400 years. It was the only life they had known. Yet many held to the promise that one day they would leave the chains behind.

 

Those years in slavery had been spent in anguish and tears, with groans and cries for help that God did not ignore (Exodus 6:5). He never forgot His covenant to bring them into the Promised Land.

 

In His perfect time, God raised up Moses in the household of Pharaoh to help redeem His people. God instructed Moses to tell the Israelites that He had heard them and was going to release them by His power and devastate Egypt by His judgement (verse 6). His oath to Abraham was to be fulfilled when God brought His beloved people out of Egypt and into the Promised Land (verses 7,8).

 

God had made a promise to Abraham to redeem his descendants from their slavery after 400 years. Through Moses, God let the Israelites know He was working to honour His promise to redeem them. Through this deliverance, Abraham’s descendants would come to know that God had taken them to himself as His people.

 

Question for Application

How does someone become one of God’s people today?

 

When a person puts his faith in Jesus Christ and receives Him as Saviour, that person becomes a child of God (John 1:12). This is a promise from God that He will honour just as surely as He did His promise to Abraham.

 

The redemption God provided for the Israelites released them from slavery to a life of freedom. In the same. way, Christ brings freedom from captivity to sin. God’s plan has always been to redeem people from sin and the pain it inflicts. Redemption brings freedom for those who call on Christ; They become the people of God.

 

B. Set Apart for God

Deuteronomy 7:6-9; 1 Peter 2:9, 10

Holiness is an attribute associated with God and godly things. For something to be considered holy, it must be separated from common use for use specifically for God’s honour. God told the Israelites they were to be a holy people, set apart from all other people on the Earth as His own (Deuteronomy 7:6). It is important to note that the Lord did not chose the Israelites because they were greater in number or power than other nations (verse 7). Rather, the Lord chose them because of His love and because of His promise to bring them out of slavery by His mighty acts (verses 7, 8). God is faithful and can be trusted to keep His promises for generations of those who love Him (verse 9).

 

The Israelites were God’s chosen people. They were called to live holy lives that would show forth as a light to the Gentiles. The apostle Peter wrote that the Church reflects these same characteristics in her calling (1 Peter 2:9, 10). God calls Christians because of His grace. Some of the Israelites were set apart as priests in service to God.

 

But all Christians are set apart as priests to serve Him in His glory. They belong to God as His people, for they were called out of the darkness of sin and brought into the light of His life. As the Israelites became God’s people by His merciful intervention, so Christians become God’s people because they have obtained mercy. Those who accept Christ as Saviour are redeemed from sin and are strengthened by the indwelling Spirit to live for God.

 

If we are saved, now as part of those God has redeemed, we are to “show forth the praises of him who hath called (us) out of darkness into His marvellous light” (verse 9). By His mercy, we have been set free from bondage and have become the people of God. Let us rejoice in our salvation.

 

Call to Discipleship

 

Throughout Scripture, the story of redemption unfolds. In the Old Testament, it is seen in the deliverance of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt. In the New Testament, it is observed in the accounts of lives bound by sin finding freedom in Christ through His shed blood. Redemption is freedom brought by God alone.

 

Many people are bound by sin today. Sometimes, even those who serve Christ struggle to find freedom from sin that entangles them. God is still listening for the anguished cries of people who are bound. He will answer those who cry out to Him and set them free.

 

As Christians, we need to proclaim the message of redemption to others. Then, they can be set free by the mercy and power of God. Then, they will come to know God and be empowered to live for Him.

 

Ministry in Action

 

The message of redemption needs to be heard by those who are without Christ. Some in your class may not know the Lord. Use these last moments to extend to them the message of God’s grace through the work of Christ on the cross.

 

Daily Bible Readings

Mon: Redemption from Evil. Genesis 48:8-16

Tue: Redemption of Vowed Persons. Leviticus 27:1-8

Wed: Redeemed out of Ruin. 1 Kings 1:28-34

Thur: Blessing God for Redemption. Luke 1:67-75

Fri: Redemption Drawing Near. Luke 21:25-33

Sat: Song of Redemption. Revelation 5:9-14

 

 

 

Action Point
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I know you might agree with some of the points that I have raised in this article. You might not agree with some of the issues raised. Let me know your views about the topic discussed. We will appreciate it if you can drop your comment. Thanks in anticipation.

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