There seems to be some confusion in the minds of many who preach the gospel today, as to exactly what the LORD JESUS accomplished when HE died on Calvary’s cross. One of the most popular ideas that I hear being proclaimed far and wide is that by shedding HIS blood and dying HE made salvation a possibility for all men. Now this idea sounds plausible enough except that if it is true then no one is actually redeemed. No ones guilt is canceled, no ones sin debt paid. No one would have received any actual benefit from the death of CHRIST, in a substantial way. The only thing we would have is the potential to be redeemed. Something would be lacking, we would still be in our sins. The whole concept of redemption (buying something with a price) would have no real meaning. Now the scripture is quite clear that the LORD JESUS actually secured (obtained) something for us. If something is secured or obtained then there is no doubt as to its possession.(see Acts 22:28; 27:13) The definition of the word obtain which is used in our text is "to find for oneself, to procure, get, obtain, "with the suggestion of accomplishing the end which had been in view; so in Heb. 9:12,”(Vine's Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words). Now we are quite certain that the LORD JESUS had a certain purpose in mind when HE went to the cross.(see Mt.1:21; Rev.13:8) HE came into the world with this purpose and HE accomplished exactly what HE intended to do.(Heb.9:26-28; I Pet.1:18-20) The question we need to ask then is, what was it that our LORD obtained for us?
The simple answer to this question is that HE purchased our redemption, or that HE did all that was necessary to procure it for us. “But this man, after HE had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of GOD; From henceforth expecting till HIS enemies be made HIS footstool. For by one offering HE hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.” (Heb 10:12-14) To be redeemed is literally to be bought back (i.e., set free) from something we were held under. So what have we been bought back from?
- From the debt of sin. The law demands that those that break it must pay a price for having done so. The payment that is required is eternal death, because the crimes we have committed are against an eternal GOD.(see Ezek.18:20;Rom.6:23) So we have a debt that must be paid, but in order for us to pay it, we must be eternally separated from GOD. But the LORD JESUS CHRIST, having no sin of HIS own, and being the possessor of an eternal life of immeasurable value, has canceled this debt by paying the ultimate price of laying down HIS life as an atonement (i.e., reparation or compensation), becoming our substitute, and acting in our behalf to settle our debt. (see I Jn.2:2; 4:10) We are justified by HIS blood.
- From the curse of the law. ”Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us” (Gal 3:13). As the LORD died for us to cancel the debt of sin which we would ultimately have had to pay in the future, he has also canceled the curse of the law which could affect us in the present time. The law of GOD is not a curse (see Rom.7:12) but the law contains a curse for the lawbreaker.(see Rom.2:12, Gal.3:10). We have all sinned and therefore have brought this curse upon ourselves.(Rom.5:12) Guilt and despair are the fruits of this curse. The LORD JESUS CHRIST has removed this curse from us by HIS death having borne the curse of the broken law in our behalf. We who have been set free by HIS redemption no longer live under the dark cloud of guilt and impending doom. (see Rom.8:1, I Jn.3:20). The greatest enemy which we face as a result of the law’s curse is the fear of death. This fear has been taken away by our LORD.s death. “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to GOD, which giveth us the victory through our LORD JESUS CHRIST." (1 Cor 15:54-57)
- From the law of sin and death. “For the law of the Spirit of life in CHRIST JESUS hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, GOD sending his own SON in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the SPIRIT.” (Romans 8:2-4) Not only have we been set free from the debt of sin and the curse of the law but we have also been set free from the principle of sin which dictated the course of our actions in time past. We are no longer slaves and bondmen to sin, we owe no allegiance to that which held us in bondage. Our LORD died to “To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. And because ye are sons, GOD hath sent forth the SPIRIT of his SON into your hearts, crying, ABBA, FATHER“ (Gal 4:5-6)