There have been quite a number of times when bank personnel asked me something I didn’t understand. It’s because they use familiar terms but with meanings I don’t usually encounter everyday like, maturity, principal, interest, etc… So I would often ask for clarification when I don’t understand something.
Once, I was about to close an account. The lady teller asked me, “Are you going to redeem the amount sir?”
I didn’t quite grasp what she meant. I know about depositing money and withdrawing it. But redeeming it? That was the first time I gave the term a thought. So I asked for her to clarify.
“I meant are you going to close the account, sir, and withdraw the whole amount?” she explained.
I understood what she meant right away. But at the same time, it felt like a bright spotlight turned on in my mind and focused on one word. I never looked at the word Redemption in the same way again.
Young believers like me (okay, that may not be accurate) throw around the word Redeem without giving it much thought. We describe the Lord Jesus as the Redeemer and assume that it is just the same as Saviour. But that time in the bank made me understand more what the Lord has done for us.
To be redeemed is to be taken ownership of.
Merriam-Webster defines redeem as “to buy back”. In the case of my money in the bank, before I took it, the bank was free to use it as it pleased. I had no control over it. All I had was a piece of booklet proving that I entrusted the money to the bank with the intention of getting it back one day. All I had was paper with ink on it. The money wasn’t really in my hands. If the bank closed for whatever reason, it will take my money down the drain with it.
Once I withdrew the amount, the money was no longer under the control of the bank. The money had been redeemed. And I am the money’s Redeemer. The money will no longer be spent according to the bank’s whim. It will be, from that point on, be used for my pleasure according to my wisdom. No matter how bad the economy gets, my money is safe with me.
Friend, that’s what Christ did for you. He has redeemed you from the world that had used you like a filthy rag all those years. When you surrendered your life to Jesus, your Redeemer came and he told the world, “This person is mine now and will spend the remaining days of his life according to my pleasure. You have no control over this person anymore.”
Whether you were an awful prostitute or an arrogant bigot in the past, once the Redeemer comes into your heart, things will change. It has to if your faith is genuine. Things will be different. You will, one day, suddenly realize that you are living a life you never knew you could. You will understand that the things you spent so much of your life on in the past, are nothing compared to being in the Redeemer’s warm, clean hands.
Have you been redeemed by the Redeemer? Are you living life knowing that the world around you has no control over you anymore? Or are you still just like everybody else, just one of the cold, filthy currency the world is using?