I know that my Redeemer liveth – Part 1
Text: Job 19:25
Those few words spoken by Job thousands of years ago have brought untold blessings to countless souls down the centuries. They are relevant in many situations, but our simple purpose just now, is to show how they also constitute the very essence of true Christian testimony, and, at the same time, point the way to personal experience of God’s saving mercy. We shall do this by considering the four key words in the statement. Each of them is very significant and helpful, when it comes to knowing Christ as personal Lord and Saviour.
The first of these is that word ‘redeemer’: “I know that my Redeemer liveth”. To redeem, we know, is to restore to original ownership by payment of a stipulated price, and the Bible has much to say about this. We can even say that, in matters of the soul, the idea of redemption is peculiar to the Christian message. Paul said, “We have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins” (Eph.l: 7; Col.1: 14). And there is the parallel word of Peter, “Ye were not redeemed with silver and gold, but with the precious blood of Christ” (1 Pet.1: 18, 19).
The Old Testament word for redeemer is particularly interesting and informative. The Hebrew word is ‘gaal,’ which is also frequently translated as kinsman, that is, relative. The reason for this is that, under the Levitical law, the right to redeem belonged to the kinsman and the two words became interchangeable. It meant that the one who was the “close relative” was authorised to buy back into the family heritage any property that had had to be forfeited for any reason. The whole book of Ruth, in the Old Testament, is a classical example of this.
This surely explains why Christ had to become a man, and enter into this world as man. He was becoming our relation, so that He could lawfully redeem us. We are also told that He was made sin for us (2 Cor. 5:21), and this was a still closer identification with us (see also Matt.3: 15). In these respects, then, He was fully related to us, and eminently qualified to be our Redeemer. Here is one of the marvels of the gospel. God has provided us with this perfect relative-redeemer, so that we may be fully restored to Himself (1 Pet .3:18). All praise to His Name!
The next key word is ‘liveth’; “I know that my Redeemer liveth”. Here, of course, we are at the very heart of all true Christian testimony; we have a living Saviour. Christianity itself is firmly based on this great historical event: Christ rose from the dead on the third day, and He is alive for evermore! (John 20:1-18; Rev. 1:18).
It is interesting to note that, when Paul was outlining the gospel, which he preached, most of what he had to say was about the resurrection of our Lord. Whilst just a few words sufficed to cover the glorious fact of Christ’s atoning death (1 Cor. 15:3), the main emphasis was that, after that death, Christ rose again and was seen by a whole succession of reliable and fully accredited witnesses (see 1 Cor. 15:1-8), so that the resurrection, too, was a fully-proven historical event!
A Christian, then, has good reason to testify, “I know that my Redeemer liveth”. He knows it from simple history and, better still, he knows it in his own inward experience. He can say with Paul, “Christ liveth in me”. And that, indeed, is the witness of Christ’s living church. The resurrection of Christ is something positively embodied in that church. Our Lord said, “Because I live, ye shall live also” (John 14:19). And there is the testimony. We must ask ourselves if we are giving out that testimony today?
Covenant Prayer Life Assembly, 6, Unity Crescent, off Olatunji Street, Ladipo, Oshodi, Lagos. Contact us on 08034849689, or e-mail: Covenantradiotv@gmail.com
No comments yet