19th May 2017

The Divine Ransom 

“For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all people. This has now been witnessed to at the proper time.
1 Timothy 2:5-6 (NIVUK)
 

Earlier this week people woke up to discover that companies, institutions and individuals had been held to ransom. It was a cyber-attack, and the demand was that money be paid so that computer users might have access to their data again.

A ransom is an amount paid so that something can be restored. Kidnappers, for example, demand a ransom so that someone they’ve taken might be restored to family and friends. Ransomware is code that is covertly installed on someone’s computer with the intention of locking away (encrypting) data until such times as the user pays the ransom price.

Biblical writers use the analogy of a ransom being paid to explain the sacrifice of Christ on our behalf. It is as if our tendency and desire to sin, and the results of our sins, held us hostage so that we couldn’t fulfil what God intended for us, and someone had to pay the price so that we could be released. This what Jesus did: he paid the price for all people, as Paul notes above.

You could say that our spiritual potential was encrypted, if you wish – locked away without our being able to access it. Now, through the mediation of Jesus, who gave his life as a ransom for us, everything has changed. It’s not that we should carry on as before, but rather this restoration is to new life. And, this new life is not a patch on the old one, it’s completely different.

“…the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:28).

Prayer
Thank you, Father, that, your son, Jesus, gave his life as a ransom for all people.
Amen

Study by James Henderson

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About the Author:
James Henderson is the National Ministry Leader for Grace Communion International in the UK and Ireland. This weekend James is speaking in our Sheffield and Nottingham congregations.

Local Congregation:
You are welcome to attend any of our local congregations in the UK and Ireland. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Contact:
james.henderson@gracecom.church
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