1 Peter 1:18-19 “For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.”
Redemption is the reason that God sent Jesus. There is nothing more important in this life than our salvation through the redeeming atonement of Jesus Christ on the Cross. Yet, I read how convincingly and persuasively we use the terms redeemed, redemption, and ransom. But what do they mean, and more importantly, what did Christ’s act of redemption mean? The 1828 Webster’s dictionary defines the word “redemption” as: the purchase of God's favor by the death and sufferings of Christ; the ransom or deliverance of sinners from the bondage of sin and the penalties of God's violated law by the atonement of Christ. One article states that there are three Greek words and their derivations are used in the New Testament to denote various aspects of this truth. In our text, “redeemed” comes from “lutroo”, which means to set free, buy back, or ransom. Christ’s innocent blood, sacrificed for us, bought us back. “By his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us” – Hebrews 9:12.
Redeemed from what? (1) From slavery to sin. Jesus taught, “Whosoever commits sin is the servant of sin” – John 8:34. (2) Thankfully, “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law” – Galatians 3:13. (3) The Greek word here is “exagorazo”, meaning to buy up, to ransom from the market place (agora), which could be called “the slave market of sin.” He redeemed us from the horrors of slavery to sin by His death on the cross. (4) He ransomed us from the wrath of God against our sin. “He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” - John 3:36.
The final word is “apolutrosis”, meaning “to ransom in full.” He has paid the full penalty! “It is finished” (John 19:30), He said as He died. In Him alone “we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace” – Ephesians 1:7. Each of us needs to appropriate His plan, “for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus”.